REPOSSESSION OF A DWELLING: CONDITIONS, TIME LIMITS AND NOTICES



    MONTREAL, Nov. 23 /CNW Telbec/ - The Régie du logement would like to
remind everyone of the main legal provisions pertaining to the repossession of
a residential dwelling. Anyone wishing to acquire a residential building or a
house which has already been leased to a tenant must have a good knowledge of
the rules that apply to repossession and of the legal time limits to be
complied with.
    A landlord may repossess a dwelling if he is the only owner of it or if
there is only one other co-owner who is also his spouse or de facto spouse,
whether of the opposite or same sex. The owner of the dwelling that is the
target of the repossession must also be the lessor of it.
    Under these conditions, the owner may repossess the dwelling upon
termination of the lease for the following purposes:

    
    - to live in it himself;
    - to house his first-degree ascendants or descendants (father, mother,
      children);
    - to house any other relative or person connected by marriage or civil
      union who is supported mainly by him;
    - to house a spouse supported mainly by him after a divorce, a separation
      from bed and board or the dissolution of a civil union (this does not
      apply to de facto spouses).

    The owner must first of all give the tenant a written notice of his or her
intention to repossess the dwelling, within the following time limits:

    - at least six months before the expiry of the lease, if the term of the
      lease is greater than six months;
    - at least six months before the date on which he wishes to repossess the
      dwelling, if the term of the lease is indeterminate;
    - at least one month before the expiry of the lease, if the term of the
      lease is six months or less.

    For instance, for a one-year lease expiring on June 30th, 2008, the owner
must notify the tenant no later than December 31st, 2007.

    The notice must indicate:

    - the intended date of repossession;
    - the name of the person who will occupy the dwelling;
    - the degree of relationship or the tie between the owner and the person
      who will occupy the dwelling.
    

    The tenant has one month from the date on which he receives the notice to
advise the owner of whether or not he intends to comply with it. If the
tenant's response is that he does not wish to vacate the premises, then,
within one month, the owner may ask the tribunal (the Régie) to authorize him
to repossess the dwelling.
    A tenant who does not respond to the owner's notice is deemed to have
refused to vacate the premises. Then, within one month of the expiry of the
period the tenant had to respond to the notice, the owner may apply for
authorization to repossess the dwelling.

    If the owner does not apply for authorization to repossess the dwelling,
then the tenant may continue to live in it.

    At the hearing before the tribunal, the owner must demonstrate that he or
she truly intends to repossess the dwelling for the purpose mentioned in the
notice to the tenant and that the repossession is not a pretext for some other
purpose.
    When the tribunal authorizes repossession of a dwelling, it may impose
conditions it deems fair and reasonable, including an indemnity for the
tenant's moving expenses.
    A tenant can recover damages resulting from repossession in bad faith,
whether or not he consented to repossession.
    Note that co-owners of a rental building acquired before 1988 have vested
rights regarding repossession. It is strongly advised to find out about them
from the Régie du logement.

    Should you require any additional information, please visit the Régie du
logement's Website at www.rdl.gouv.qc.ca.
    The Régie can also be reached by phone:
    Montréal, Laval and Longueuil areas: (514) 873-2245
    Other areas: 1 800 683-2245
    -%SU: SOC
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For further information:

For further information: Jean-Pierre Le Blanc, Head Office, (514)
873-6575

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Régie du logement

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