What does GetQuorum do?
GetQuorum is an online proxy voting and AGM notice distribution service that helps condo corporations reach quorum, pass bylaws, and save on printing costs.
What is Quorum?
Quorum is the minimum number of condo units required to participate in an Owner's Meeting, like an Annual General Meeting (AGM), in order for its proceedings to be deemed valid. Under Ontario’s Condominium Act, 1998 (the Condominium Act) quorum is 25% of condo units.
What is a Bylaw?
Bylaws are legally binding rules that govern how a condo is run. Bylaws are proposed by the Board of Directors and approved by a majority of owners at a Meeting. Bylaws (which are found in the Condominium Declaration, which is like the constitution of a condo)) detail the responsibilities of condo directors, how annual general meetings are run, the collection of condo fees, the maintenance and use of common elements, and responsibilities of the unit owner. In order for bylaws to be passed, more than 50% of all units must vote in favour -- and in order to even hold a vote for the bylaw, at least 50% of units must be in attendance.
What is an Annual General Meeting (AGM)?
Under the the Condominium Act, a condo corporation must hold an AGM annually. During an AGM, the owners have the opportunity to review the audited financial statements and ask questions of its auditors, approve proposed amendments and bylaws to the Condominium Declaration, elect directors, hear about any outstanding or arising corporation issues, and receive updates on current or past projects. Voting is dependent on the number of units and not the number of owners.
What does it mean when an AGM is adjourned?
If quorum is not achieved (25%), then the AGM cannot proceed and must be reconvened at a later date. If not enough owners are present to hold a bylaw vote (50%), then that vote cannot proceed. Rather than cancelling a failed meeting or bylaw vote, adjourning a meeting allows the condo corporation to retain and count the current owners in attendance (in-person or by-proxy) towards quorum at the reconvened meeting at a later date. In this way, it is hoped that it would be easier to achieve quorum at the future meeting.
What is a proxy?
A proxy is a person who is physically present at a meeting that is not the owner, but represents the owner and votes on behalf of that owner. To appoint a proxy, an owner must fill out a proxy form casting their vote(s), and appoint a proxy holder. An owner is free to appoint anyone to be their proxy, but if the proxy does not attend the meeting then their vote is deemed not valid. For this reason, most proxy forms also appoint backup proxy holders such as the President or other Director in the Corporation.
What is the difference between a proxy vote and an in-person vote?
A proxy vote and an in-person vote hold the same value -- each is a means for an owner to cast their vote(s) during an AGM. The only difference between a proxy vote and an in-person vote is the method in which the AGM receives it. An in-person vote is a formally indicated choice by an owner physically present at an AGM and is typically done anonymously. A proxy vote is documented and indicated on a legal form and is not anonymous -- this is because a proxy vote must be reliably identifiable back to the original owner for fraud protection reasons.
Do you handle AGM Meeting Notice distribution? Do you print/mail AGM Packages?
Yes, GetQuorum will handle the online distribution as well as the physical distribution (printing and mailing) of AGM Packages. We highly recommend clients use us for printing because we can easily send packages only to owners who have not opted in through our eConsent campaign -- thereby saving considerable amounts of money on meeting costs.
How much time does GetQuorum need to get started?
We require at minimum three (3) business days to process and setup our system before serving notice. However, in order to best utilize our service, we recommend contacting us at least thirty (30) days prior to your meeting date. This will allow us ample time to setup, run a pre-consent campaign for online distribution thereby reducing your printing costs, and comply with the Condo Act on service of notice of your meeting.
What are the required documents that we need to provide GetQuorum?
We require the following documents at least three (3) business days prior to your required date of service.
- The list of emails and mailing address of your unit owners in Excel or CSV format.
- The finalized AGM package to be distributed - compiled in a single PDF file in the order it should be printed. The package will be printed double-sided in black ink on white paper unless otherwise instructed by you.
To best utilize GetQuorum’s pre-consent feature, we recommend providing the owner’s list at least seven (7) days prior to your required date of service.
Do you provide a certificate confirming that notice was served?
Yes, we provide a certificate showing the date that service was completed. IMPORTANT: we require three a minimum of (3) business days to process and begin serving notice. You are responsible for providing us with the required documents sufficiently in advance in order to comply with your region’s Service of Notice requirements. For example, under Ontario’s Condo Act, owners must be served notice of an AGM at least 15 days prior to the meeting, you would need to provide us with your documents at least 3 business days prior to it. We cannot guarantee compliance if the documents are not provided within our required timelines.
What is a pre-consent / eConsent campaign?
A pre-consent email is the first email communication owners receive from GetQuorum. This email asks for the owner’s consent to receive their AGM package electronically. Generally between 50%-66% of owners opt-in for online distribution. This has led to a dramatic drop in the costs associated for printing and mailing of AGM Packages.
Is your service compliant with the Ontario Condominium Act? Are online proxies legally valid?
Yes, we have received a legal opinion from Miller Thomson LLP, a top Condominium Law Firm in Toronto, which provides that GetQuorum’s online proxies comply with Subsection 51 and 52 of the Ontario Condominium Act, 1998.
Do you guarantee quorum?
GetQuorum cannot guarantee the actions of individual voting owners and therefore cannot guarantee quorum. Historically, the ease of our software has resulted in achieving quorum for all of our clients.
How does GetQuorum distribute notice of meeting and the packages?
We send an email to owners informing them of the meeting details as well as instructions to download the package through our cloud hosted software. It's really easy, just a simple click is needed.
How does GetQuorum collect online proxies?
We periodically remind owners to complete their online proxy with a series of automatic email reminders. It's really simple and only takes a few minutes to complete.
Can we (the Condo Corp) customize the emails sent to owners for solicitation purposes?
Yes, we recommend a custom email solicitation campaign for meetings involving a bylaw vote. However it is your responsibility to provide the contents of the emails. You can use GetQuorum to send your emails, but we do not take responsibility or liability for the content of the emails sent through our system.
What if we need help creating an effective solicitation strategy?
If you are interested in help creating custom communications for your campaign, GetQuorum will happily refer you to our partners specializing in email solicitation.
How much time does GetQuorum need to be effectively utilized before the AGM?
According to the Condominium Act, owners must be served notice of an AGM at least 15 days prior to the meeting. For best results, GetQuorum recommends potential clients to contact us at least 30 days prior to their next AGM. This will allow us ample time to setup, run a pre-consent campaign for online distribution thereby reducing your printing costs, and comply with the Condo Act on service of notice of your meeting. However, clients have benefitted from only utilizing our Online Proxy Voting Software after they have already served notice themselves. Contact us for more details about this.
How do you handle proxy fraud?
We take a number of measures to screen for fraud including providing each owner with a unique access code, IP address tracking, and other methods.
How do we (the customer) get the completed proxies?
We provide a dashboard for you to track and download completed proxies in real-time. Proxies are also emailed to you the instant an owner completes it.