Posted on January 28, 2010 by HSC
In November 2009, the Ontario Court of Appeals decided that landlords cannot require tenants to complete snow removal tasks as a condition of their leases.
The situation began when a tenant commenced a legal action against a respondent landlord for damages after she slipped and fell on the premises. The tenant claims that she slipped on ice on the walkway leading to her basement apartment. But in his defence, the landlord argues that the tenant is “responsible for keeping their walkway and stairway clean (including snow removal)” based on the Condition of Lease.
Well, Ontario Court of Appeals made a decision on the case, Montgomery v. Van. The Court found that landlords cannot require tenants to complete snow removal tasks as a condition of their leases as it violates the Tenant Protection Act. The Residential Tenancies Act Regulation 517/06 seems to impose similar maintenance obligations on landlords. If landlords want them to clear their own walkways, driveways, etc., they must enter into a separate contract with the tenants for snow removal.