E-Proxies vs. Electronic Voting – what’s the difference?

Recently, there’s been much news in the condominium marketplace about electronic voting options that came into effect with the revisions to the Condominium Act, 1998 on November 1, 2017.  Specifically, the Protecting Condominium Owners Act, 2015 amended Section 52 of the Condominium Act, 1998 to allow voting that is “indicated by telephonic or electronic means, if the by-laws so permit.

This means that with the 2017 changes to legislation, Condominium Corporations can update their By-laws to allow voting electronic voting options. This process comes at a cost to the Corporation – for preparation of updated By-laws, registration of same, and holding an Owner’s meeting to approve the new By-law.

Even if a Corporation does not elect to pass a new By-law allowing electronic voting, the option of electronic proxy collection is a good one for any Corporation struggling to achieve quorum or to collect enough votes for important decisions for their community.

Electronic proxy collection is different than electronic voting as it is just a manner of collecting proxy forms for a meeting. The actual vote still takes place during meeting, using the proxy issuers instructions to the representative they have chosen for the meeting. Therefore, a new By-law to allow the electronic collection of proxies is not required.

Of course, Condominium Corporations must be aware that both options come with ongoing costs to use the electronic tools. Boards must consider if either tool provides benefit to their Corporation, most often if they struggle to achieve quorum for meetings or are looking to accomplish specific goals such as By-law updates.