Converting a Property to Divided Co-ownership
In which all dwellings are occupied by of undivided co-owners (Another guide is available for other types of conversion)
NOTE : This document is intended mainly to explain how to complete an application and prepare supporting facts for a hearing. For more information on the rules and conversion steps, we suggest reading the Régie du logement's publication entitled Divided Co-ownership...and the Tenants.
- Required Authorization
Under the Act respecting the Régie du logement (R.S.Q., c. R-8.1), any person who wishes to convert one or a number of properties to a co-divided ownership must apply for authorization to the Régie, when the property has, or had in the last ten years, at least one dwelling.
Under the law, a "dwelling" means a premise rented for residential purposes, offered for rent or that is vacant after having being rented.
- Application for Authorization
The application shall be submitted along with the fee required by regulation which will vary according to the number of dwellings.
Given the complexity of the procedure, applicants are advised to consult a notary or lawyer for help preparing the application and in relation to the hearing. When a notary assists an applicant, the notary shall see that the application is signed by the applicant and may act only as a witness for the applicant; a notary may not be considered a representative, in accordance with the requirements in Sections 72 and 74 of the Act respecting the Régie du logement.
The Régie shall notify the applicants of the location, date and time of the hearing.
The applicants must attend the hearing. Failing this, applicants may mandate a spouse or may be represented by a lawyer. When there is valid reason, applicants may also mandate a relative, relation by marriage or friend.
Because the hearing is not a mere formality, it is important to know that failure to provide any required evidence may lead to a postponement of the case and additional waiting periods.
Applicants or their representatives should be able to prove all the facts related to the application and all circumstances surrounding the conversion by means of testimony and material evidence. When an applicant is being represented and the representative is not personally aware of the facts, the applicant should ensure that there are witnesses able to relate the facts.
- Posting of Notice
The law stipulates that a notice shall be posted before the building. The Régie asks for the cooperation of landlords concerning the logistics of the posting. The posted notice includes the statement that any person may make a written representation in relation to the application within ten days of posting or of the publication of a public notice, as the case may be.
The Régie may, if it considers it expedient, hold a public hearing or hear any person who has made a representation.
- Registration of the declaration of co-ownership with the Bureau de la publicité des droits (known as the Bureau d'enregistrement prior to 1994)
Once authorization to convert has been obtained, landlord have one year to have the declaration of co-ownership registered in the property records. The Régie's decision to authorize the conversion must accompany the declaration of co-ownership.
Once this period has elapsed, the authorization becomes null and void. Applicants may, for valid reason, apply for an extention, provided the application is conveyed to the Régie before expiry of the period.
It is important to be aware that any interested party, including the Régie, may apply to the Superior Court to have any declaration of co-ownership that has been registered without the Régie's authorization removed, when such authorization is required, and to have any contract arising from this registration cancelled.
DETAILS OF THE APPLICATION AND REQUIRED DOCUMENTS
This kind of application often requires several pages of text, especially when there are a number of parties, long cadastral designations, and so on. Accordingly, we do not recommend using the standard Régie form (with carbon copy), which is not suitable for this kind of application. It would be more practical to complete the application on ordinary 8½ X 14 paper. Feel free to follow the Application Model in Part III of the present document.
- Parties to the Application
The application must correctly identify the landlords and give their addresses and postal codes. It would be useful to include the telephone number and fax number, where applicable.
The application must include the cadastral designation of the building or buildings that the applicants wish to convert, in accordance with Sections 3032, 3033 and 3037 Q.C.C. The designation must be complete, up-to- date and official, i.e., it must correspond to the designation entered in the land records on the date of the application. Any subsequent changes to the cadastre must be conveyed to the commissioners at the hearing.
The application shall also give the street address of each building and the number of swellings.
The ownership title of the co-owners (e.g., contract of purchase, assignment of undivided shares, etc.) must be submitted.
When available, a map or certificate giving the location of the property is considered a relevant document.
- The Régie's Criteria/Information Required in the Application
When examining the application, the Régie, considers mainly the aspects related to the rights of tenants who have lived in the building for a number of years, particularly, the right to remain in the premises. moreover, each co-owner should be able to prove that he occupies a dwelling in the building through testimony, driver's license, power or telephone bills, etc.
In short, the Régie is required under the law to refuse authorization when :
- work was done to a building in order to prepare the building for conversion and to evict a tenant;
- a dwelling was repossessed illegally by the landlord or was repossessed in order to convert the building to divided co-ownership;
- in the five years preceding the application, the landlord was found guilty of harassing a tenant of the property in question, and has not received a pardon.
The application must provide details of the above aspects and the applicant must be willing to provide all relevant information in relation to these aspects at the hearing.
It is also important to be aware that when an application for conversion is refused for one of the above three reasons, another application for the same building may not be submitted for another three years.
Other information or documents may be requested by the tribunal. The applicant must agree to provide this information within the required time limit.
Identification of co-owners - applicant(s)
APPLICATION FOR AUTHORIZATION TO CONVERT (A) PROPERTY(IES) TO DIVIDED
CO-OWNERSHIP (Sec. 51, Act respecting the Régie du logement (R.C.S., c.
The applicant declares the following :
SECTION I - Description of the Property(ies)
Description of all properties concerned by the conversion application, with the address, number of dwellings and cadastral designation of each.
SECTION II - Root of Title
Statement of the root of title (from whom, and when each property was purchased) for all properties concerned by the application.
SECTION III - Background of occupancy for each undivided co- owner.
Give all pertinent details pertaining to the occupancy of each co-owner.
SECTION IV - Statement that there was no :
- work in preparation for conversion for the purpose of eviction;
- guilty verdict in the last five years in relation to a harassment charge (Sec. 112.1 Act respecting the Régie du logement), for which a pardon was not granted;
- illegal repossession of a dwelling.
WHEREBY, the applicant requests the tribunal's authorization to convert the abovementioned property(ies) to divided co-ownership.