The Régie du logement (rental board) is changing names! On August 31, 2020, it will become the Tribunal administratif du logement. There will also be a few changes to its rules of procedure.
New name, same mission
The tribunal’s name is changing, but its mission will remain the same, namely to:
- promote conciliation between landlords and tenants
- render decisions on cases involving landlords and tenants
- inform people about the rights and obligations involved in residential leases
Some new rules of procedure
The tribunal will follow almost all the same rules of procedure as the rental board, but there will be a few changes.
More detailed rules about conciliation
The rental board already offers a conciliation service that enables people involved in a conflict to meet with an impartial person, known as a conciliator. The service is free and confidential. The conciliator does not render a decision, but tries to help people to reach an agreement to end their dispute. The tribunal will continue to offer this service, but will now have more detailed rules as to when it is offered and how it proceeds.
You will now have 45 days to file proof of notification of an application
When you file an application against someone at the tribunal, you have to let the person know you filed it. This allows them to understand your request, and to prepare for the hearing. This is known as “notifying” someone of an application. You have to keep proof of this, for example a bailiff’s report, or proof of receipt via registered mail.
You will now have 45 days, after filing your application with the tribunal, to transmit this proof of notification to the tribunal. If you fail to do that, your file may be closed.
Address changes now even more important!
If a person involved in a case at the tribunal does not attend the hearing, a decision is usually rendered against them in their absence. If the person had a valid reason not to attend, they can request that the decision be cancelled and that a new hearing be held. However, the law now states that, if the notice of hearing was sent to an old address because the person failed to inform the tribunal of a change of address, this will not be considered a valid reason for cancelling a decision.
So, once you have filed an application with the tribunal, or you have been notified that an application against you has been filed, you must inform the tribunal of any change of address.
To learn more about the changes that will come into effect on August 31st, go to: https://www.rdl.gouv.qc.ca/en