Does the Law Allow Eviction of a Tenant During Winter? A Brief Guide to The Urban Myth Misperception Regarding Wintertime Eviction of a Residential Tenant
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Is It True That a Tenant Cannot Be Evicted in the Winter?
The Belief That a Tenant Cannot Be Evicted In the Winter Is Urban Myth Often Based on a Misperception of the Hardship Discretion Sometimes Used By the Landlord Tenant Board.
The urban myth belief that a residential tenant cannot be evicted in winter likely arises because of a misinterpretation between what may happen and what actually does happen. There is actually nothing specifically stated within the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006, S.O. 2006, Chapter 17 (the "RTA"), as the law in Ontario that governs residential tenancies issues to prevent eviction during winter. However, the RTA does contain section 83 which allows an adjudicator, being the decision maker of the Landlord Tenant Board, to decide cases using discretion. Accordingly, the adjudicator may choose to refrain from issuing an Order to Evict during the winter months or may choose to issue an Order to Evict with a delayed eviction date. It seems that whereas an adjudicator may refrain from issuing an Order to Evict because it is wintertime, the urban myth was born that a tenant cannot be evicted during the wintertime. Of course, this is a false truth, meaning a perception based on misunderstanding. The misunderstanding arises when people misinterpret the reason that an adjudicator may refrain from issuing an Order to Evict in the wintertime whereas such a decision is a choice based on a discretion. The adjudicator may choose such a discretion out of concern for the hardship that a wintertime eviction would cause rather than because of any mandate in law.