2017 Harvest

2017 Harvest

Monday, February 8, 2016

OMB awards costs to Municipality where landowner's claim for expropriation compensation denied

The Ontario Municipal Board ("OMB") has awarded costs to the County of Simcoe in a case where a landowner unsuccessfully claimed compensation for injurious affection.  The OMB's decision is recounted in my blog post from June, 2015 - OMB dismisses claim for injurious affection where no taking - on merits and on basis of limitation period.

The OMB has discretion under Section 32(2) of the Expropriations Act to award costs in favour of the expropriating authority.  In this case, the County of Simcoe had incurred a discounted amount of $165,176.55 consisting of legal and appraisal costs.  The County's claim for costs was made on the grounds that, "if the Claimant had conducted itself in a reasonable and prudent manner, it would never have brought this claim and that the way in which the Claimant governed itself throughout this claim unjustifiably increased costs which otherwise could have been avoided."  The OMB's reasons also disclose that the County had actually made an offer to the landowner of $15,000 to settle after the landowner retained counsel for the matter.

The County claimed "party and party" or "partial indemnity" costs in the amount of $113,922.48.  The OMB decided that the landowner's conduct in refusing the settlement offer was unreasonable and, therefore, that it should be responsible for some of the costs of the County incurred in defending the claim.  The OMB awarded $86,943.20 to the County.

Read the decision at: Willies Car & Van Wash Limited v. Simcoe (County).