In the Niagara Region, many knew the name Browne and Associates Legal Services as a provider of excellent legal services. Angela Browne and her team have been providing legal services for nearly three decades. They have been known for providing high-quality results for their clients for many years.
The years of 2021 and 2022 were a time for a change in many businesses and it was the same for us. The pandemic brought an increasing set of legal problems for the people of Niagara.
The company started from a cramped office with a law clerk and assistant to an office with multiple legal representatives. From representing primarily residents in the Niagara area, we have been able to expand to representing residents across the province. Our paralegals are taking on challenging cases in a wide variety of specialties and the clientele has grown correspondingly. The business grew in terms of demand for different specialties, starting with 2019, and then the pandemic hit. Like many businesses, the pandemic brought a lot of interesting challenges, initially layoffs, then spurring growth in all sorts of areas. Read more… “Why Invictus”→
How the Pandemic has Brought These Issues to Light
During our brush with a global pandemic, we heard from various groups and their human rights. Many complain that public health restrictions have been an infringement on their ‘human rights’. Many of these groups have since filed cases in court to challenge these restrictions, although it is not clear yet that any court has ruled in their favour.
Some litigants in these cases conflate ‘human rights’ with Charter rights, the latter of which is constitutionally protected by law. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms are restricted only to state-controlled entities, such as governments, public health departments and the police. Further, each case is assessed by the Courts to determine if a law, an action, a public protection order (such as a lockdown or masking order) or process, infringes one’s rights. Read more… “What Are Human Rights and What Can I Do to Enforce Them?”→
Bill 184 is comprised of at least in part changes to the Residential Tenancies Act, the law governing relations between residential landlords and tenants in Ontario. Prior to the Bill’s passage, many tenant groups protested and warned us all that thousands of tenants will be evicted without a hearing. In fact, nothing much at that end has changed, other than allowing landlords and tenants to make private arrangements outside the Landlord and Tenant Board that can be enforced in the same way as if they attended mediation on Hearing Day.
Can a Tenant be Evicted Without a Hearing Under this New Law?
First, we need to discuss facts about the existing Act before Bill 184 came into place. As someone that has represented hundreds of parties before the Board over the years of its existence, the Act always had an option for what is called an ‘ex parte’ hearing. The Landlord and Tenant go to a Hearing but, before the hearing they sort out their issues with the help of a Mediator. After they arrive at an agreement, they attend before the Adjudicator and ask for a consent order. A Consent Order is what makes the agreement enforceable and less likely to be overturned on review. Read more… “Evictions Under Bill 184: Are They Really Easier?”→
Many prospective investors have asked me if it was worth their while becoming a Landlord. They read the horror stories in the newspapers about tenants that overstay their ‘visit’ for months at a time. These tenants squat while their landlords continue to pay the bills. They read about tenants that have left their newly renovated properties in such a wreck that one wonders how they can find good tenants that would care for their property as they have done.
Prospective landlords also want to know how much to ask for in rent, as they do not want to overcharge or lose money. Asking for too little over the long term might seem worth it to attract tenants, but over time expenses might absorb most or all of it. Asking too much might not attract many tenants, or it might put one at risk of tenants falling behind in payments. Striking that fine balance is a business decision all landlords have to make. It is important to know that most tenants are decent people who will treat your property with care and pay their rent on time. Read more… “Pros and Cons of Becoming a Landlord in Ontario”→
Our office receives calls from Tenants who are bewildered after getting an eviction notice when they never got a Hearing at the Landlord and Tenant Board. They ask me if it is legal to do this. My answer to this as always, is “it depends”.
I will often ask the Tenant if anything had taken place between them and the Landlord recently. Was there a Board appearance, a mediation, or did they sign an agreement to terminate (N11)? We have been told by Tenants that their Landlords put them to duress to sign a form to say they will move by a particular date. Many Tenants are not aware of what these Forms are. When I ask them if they signed any forms, they often say, “Yes, I did. Did I do something wrong?”.
No. As a Tenant, you did nothing wrong. You probably did not know what you were signing. Many Tenants have not planned to move from their rental units before their Landlords came in to get them to sign. One concern is if the Tenant does not in fact leave by the date set in the form, they can be evicted. There will be no Hearing. There will be no opportunity to present their side of the story to the Board. Read more… “TENANTS – A NEW EVICTION TRICK BY SOME LANDLORDS”→
At Invictus Legal Services in St. Catharines,our Paralegals pay close attention to your legal issues and desired outcomes and we focus our years of legal and practical experience on resolving your matter(s). We offer a broad range of paralegal services to residents of our practice areas.
You need results. We deliver!
We begin by listening and understanding what you wish to achieve. Then we craft our advice to your needs and your fact scenario. For you, results matter and the same is true for us. Results for us are happy clients. Or maybe we should say satisfied clients who have achieved their anticipated results. Because we take on the matters that matter to you, results matter.