Check your condo insurance policy!

Condominium owners take note. In most condominiums, there is a blanket insurance policy for the common elements, and the individual unit owner’s policy. An individual owner’s policy should include “chargeback coverage”. Under the Ontario Condominium Act, 1998, a condominium can pass a bylaw to allow the insurance deductibles on the condominium’s blanket insurance policy to be charged back to individual owners where the negligence of those unit owners has caused damage to the common elements. Water damage is a good example. If you leave water running in your unit and it leaks out, causing damage to the common elements, there can be a $5,000 or $10,000.00 deductible that the condo can charge back to you. If your individual policy does not provide coverage for this chargeback, you’ll be paying this cost out of pocket. If you can’t pay it, the board can register a lien against your unit. This issue is important since the amount of the deductible varies from condo to condo depending upon their claims history. On an annual basis, please ensure you are aware of what the deductible is on your condominium’s blanket policy so that you can assess whether your insurance coverage is adequate or not.

Guest post by Kerry Fox