- Self-Insurance Fund : Self-Insurance Fund
Definition : Self-Insurance Fund
Fund dedicated to the payment of the deductible that the syndicate of co-owners is required to pay in relation with the insurance coverage of the co-ownership. This fund is also dedicated to the repair of the damage caused to property in which the syndicate has an insurable interest, when the contingency fund or an insurance indemnity can not provide for it (e.g. in the case of a insurance limit, underinsurance or of an exclusions etc.). It is the duty of the Board of Directors, after consultation with the General Meeting of the Co-owners, to fix the amounts to be paid into the self-insurance fund.
August 27, 2022 — On June 22, 2022, the Government of Quebec published in the Gazette officielle du Québec a regulation amending the Regulation to establish various measures in matters of divided co-ownership insurance. The by-law amends the terms and conditions for establishing the minimum contribution to the self-insurance fund of an immovable held in divided co-ownership so that a contribution bringing the balance of the fund to more than $100,000 may be reduced. Nevertheless, a syndicate of co-owners may always decide to deposit in the auto insurance fund an amount greater than this amount, and this, according to its financial forecasts.
Le fonds d'auto assurance est devenu obligatoire le 15 avril 2022, en vertu de l’adoption du projet de loi 141, en 2018, qui a notamment créé l’article 1071.1 du Code civil du Québec. Il était devenu nécessaire, en raison d’une augmentation substantielle des franchises (déductible) d’assurance. Le montant de ces franchises était auparavant négligeable la plupart du temps, alors qu’aujourd’hui, il peut atteindre des dizaines, voire des centaines de milliers de dollars.
Le fonds d’auto assurance, qui a trait aux couvertures d’assurance d’une copropriété, est destiné au paiement des différentes franchises (déductibles) que le syndicat de copropriétaires doit acquitter suite à un sinistre. Ces franchises touchent l’assurance du bâtiment et l’assurance responsabilité civile du syndicat, des administrateurs, des officiers d’assemblée et du gérant. Ce fonds doit également servir à réparer le préjudice occasionné aux biens pour lesquels le syndicat a un intérêt assurable (ex.: le paiement du coût des travaux de réhabilitation de l'immeuble qui ne sont pas indemnisés par l'assureur), lorsque le fonds de prévoyance ou une indemnité d’assurance ne peut y pourvoir (ex. : dans le cas d’un plafond de garantie, de sous-assurance ou d’exclusions).
Le fonds d'auto assurance deviendra obligatoire le 15 avril 2022, en vertu de l’adoption du projet de loi 141, en 2018. Dans cette capsule vidéo, l'avocat émérite Yves Joli-Coeur explique les détails.
The basis of the management of divided co-ownerships, the financing and accounting of syndicates of co-owners must be mastered both by those who must establish the accounts and by those who have to report to the co-owners. A syndicate of co-owners has the obligation to account for its operations by funds. The Civil Code of Québec requires the creation of a general fund, a contingency fund and and since April 2022 a self-insurance fund. The general fund for current operations is also sometimes referred to as an administration fund or an administration fund.
Le fonds d’auto assurance est affecté au paiement des franchises prévues par les assurances souscrites par le syndicat et d'un montant additionnel raisonnable
Questions : Qu'est-ce qu'un montant additionnel raisonnable? Comment fait-on pour connaitre la somme additionnelle? On doit se fier sur quoi exactement pour définir la somme additionnelle?
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At our last annual co-owner's meeting, the board of directors informed us that it was going to take $10,000 from our contingency fund to set up a self-insurance fund. To justify their decision, the directors said that this will allow to avoid putting up a special assessment. Several co-owners seemed to agree.
Question: Can the board unilaterally decide to use part of the sums accumulated in the contingency fund to set up a self-insurance fund without consulting or obtaining the approval of the co-owners? And if so is this a good way to manage the funds of our co-ownership?
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Almost every insurance policy includes deductibles, the amounts of which vary depending on the risk insured. For example, the deductible for water damage is usually higher than that for fire. The amount of the deductible will be deducted from any compensation paid. Its purpose is to make the insured responsible, by making him take charge of part of the repairs of the damage caused by the disaster. The advantage for the syndicate is to see its premium reduced. In co-ownerships, deductibles are a factor in the Building insurance, and in the third party liability insurance of the syndicate, directors, meeting officers, co-ownership manager and of the condo manager. Regarding co-owner’s insurance, generally each home insurance policy contains one or more deductibles for various amounts according with the nature of the loss.
The syndicates of co-ownership must set up a self-Insurance Fund to anticipate and finance, in particular, the expenses relating to the carrying out of future work following a loss. This fund is mandatory since April 15, 2022 following the adoption of the Bill 141, in 2018, which notably created section 1071.1 of the Civil Code of Québec. It had become necessary due to a substantial increase in insurance deductibles. Most of the time, the amount of these deductibles was formerly negligible, whereas today, it can reach tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
After being victims of a loss, the members of the board of directors and the affected co-owners are often caught off guard. How will things unfold? There is no need to worry or panic, because in principle, once the notice of loss completed, various stakeholders get involved: the insurer of the syndicate, but also that of co-owners and lessees, who will respectively designate their own claim adjuster. Generally the co-owners affected by a loss, as well as the syndicate, believe that making a claim is always the right thing to do. This is true in many cases, but sometimes the syndicate might want to refrain from doing so.
Preparing a forecast annual budget is an unavoidable task in co ownership. Its preparation, preliminary examination and adoption will ensure the proper functioning of the syndicate of co-owners. It is up to the Board of Directors to define its terms, in view of the expenses that will have to be paid to allow a syndicate to meet its obligations. The budget also makes it possible to fix the amount of the contributions of each co-owner to the expenses of the co-ownership.
It will be prepared by the Board of Directors or property manager, based on the amounts spent in preceding financial periods, as well as anticipated non-recurring expenses. The preparation of the budget forecast requires time and rigor.
When you buy a unit in divided co-ownership, you do not only acquire an apartment. You also join a group of co-owners responsible for the accounts to be paid to maintain and preserve the building. It is therefore important to be careful and to check, upstream, the financial statements and the good management of the syndicate. To get a clearer picture, the two basic questions to ask are: Have the directors put in place an appropriate management? And do they have a good control of its financial component? To find out, you should ask questions to your vendor and the syndicate. This will allow you to see whether the condominium follows rigorous accounting methods or not.
The Law and the overwhelming majority of declarations of co-ownership require that syndicates of co-owners insure their building. This may seem surprising at first glance as the syndicate does not own the private portions nor the common portions. However, its main object is to ensure the preservation and the longevity of the building and to manage and administer it diligently following rules of the trade. This is why the legislator has given to the syndicate an insurable interest and has made it compulsory that it subscribe building insurance.