Update on Landlord and Tenant Law: Eviction Suspension Lifted and Changes to Eviction Process
(Current as of: August 4, 2020)
The COVID-19 pandemic eviction ban was lifted in Ontario on August 4, 2020. This means that evictions can once again take place. Recent changes to the Residential Tenancies Act have also changed the process for eviction in most residential tenancies and made other changes including the following:
- Evictions can now be fast tracked at the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) if the tenant agrees to a repayment plan with their landlord but then misses a payment. It is very important for tenants to get legal advice before agreeing to repayment plans because not following the terms of a plan could lead the landlord to get an eviction order without a hearing at the LTB. If a tenant receives an eviction order in these circumstances, they have only 10 days to request a hearing.
- Tenants facing eviction for rent owing must now provide written notice to their landlord if they want to raise various issues at the eviction hearing including issues related to repair problems in their units. Before the changes were made to the law, tenants could automatically raise these issues.
- If a tenant does not challenge an illegal rent increase within 12 months, the new rent now becomes legal and cannot be disrupted.
- Landlords now have 12 months to bring former tenants to the LTB for issues such as rent owing. Before the changes were made to the law, landlords had to take former tenants to Small Claims Court. As Small Claims Court has much stricter rules than the LTB to ensure tenants are made aware of hearings, there is concern that former tenants will not learn of the hearings at the LTB.
While the changes to the law are being challenged in court, the changes are currently in effect. We will provide an updated when we have more information about the court challenge.
If you are a non-English speaking tenant and speak one of the languages in our client communities (Vietnamese, Laotian, Khmer, or Chinese), please call our legal clinic at 416-971-9674. If you are an English-speaking tenant, you can call your local community legal clinic.
For more details about tenant rights in Ontario, see our publication on Tenants’ Rights.
Ontario’s Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) applies to most rental housing in Ontario, such as rooms, apartments, houses, mobile home parks, and retirement homes.
But some rental housing is not covered by the RTA. For example, you might not be covered if you live in a place that is supposed to be used for business, share a kitchen or bathroom with the owner or a close family member of the owner, or live in some types of temporary or seasonal housing. The RTA also does not cover some types of shared living, such as roommates (i.e. when you are renting from another tenant.
If your housing is not covered by the RTA, the information in this page does not apply to you. You should always consult a lawyer or community legal clinic for legal advice on your rights as a tenant.
This factsheet has been adapted from HALCO July 30, 2020 update