Strata corporations can now hold general meetings virtually

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Strata corporations can now hold general meetings virtually

Saturday, February 20, 2021

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KINGSTON, Jamaica —Strata corporations have been given the greenlight to conduct their general meetings via video conferencing in light of the restrictions on public gatherings due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Supreme Court made the order on February 16, following an application by the Commission of Strata Corporations in late 2020.

Chief Executive Officer of the Commission of Strata Corporations, Sandra Garrick said, “The commission sees this as a good decision for the administration of the affairs of strata corporations.”

“It will allow corporations to continue to manage their affairs in a timely manner, as these meetings are key to the collaborative efforts of proprietors and the effective management by executive committees,” she added.

Garrick explained that Under the Registration (Strata Titles) Act, strata owners are required to vote in person, however, the ruling now stipulates that persons can participate 'in person' via electronic means.

“Each proprietor is entitled to vote at an Annual General Meeting (AGM) or Extra Ordinary General Meeting (EGM) providing all their fees are paid up. A proprietor may also exercise his or her right to vote if absent from the meeting by the appointment of a proxy,” she shared.

Garrick highlighted that the two most important decisions, which are usually taken at AGMs are: the sum of maintenance contribution to be paid by proprietors, which is determined by the budgeted expenses of the corporation and passed at the meeting; as well as the election of the executive committee of the corporation (three to nine proprietors) to oversee the management and administration of the property.

The Commission of Strata Corporations is the government regulator of strata corporations in Jamaica. Its duties include: to monitor, regulate and supervise corporations; maintain a register of such corporations; facilitate the resolution of disputes; and enforce by-laws.

Strata corporations, typically consisting of apartments and townhouses, are so registered at the Office of Titles under the Registration of Titles Act.

Under this arrangement, the proprietor owns the inner portion of the unit while everything outside of the unit is considered common property, with a monthly maintenance fee applied for upkeep.

— JIS


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