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Vernon Okanagan
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Michael has practiced exclusively in civil litigation since his call to the bar in 1988 with extensive experience in complex civil litigation at the trial and appellate levels in British Columbia and the Yukon as well as in mediation and arbitration.  In his general litigation practice, Michael advises and represents strata property managers, strata corporations and strata owners in a wide variety of disputes under the Strata Property Act and under the home warranty and REDMA provisions.  Among other areas of law, his practice has an emphasis in construction/corporate/commercial disputes, expropriation, family law cases, professional negligence, employment, and personal injury.

Notably, Michael has 15 years of extensive experience in strata property matters and disputes including highly complex land use and cost sharing easement issues and construction deficiency/warranty insurance claims throughout the lower mainland.  To the extent that he acts on behalf of strata property managers and numerous strata corporations, he provides representation not just as litigation counsel appearing at the superior Courts of British Columbia, at arbitration, mediation and administrative tribunals such as the Human Rights Tribunal, Employment Standards and City Variance hearings, but also as legal advisor in the strata and real estate regulatory fields as well as all other areas of the law.  These include extensive past and ongoing experience in the following:

·         Numerous home warranty and construction deficiency claims against warranty providers and builders in complex construction deficiency claims worth substantial millions of dollars;

·         Complex cost sharing and land use disputes involving multi-use towers and associated reciprocal easements situate throughout Vancouver and Victoria;

·         Interplay between common property, limited common property, strata lot property issues including duty to maintain and repair and easement, lease and license issues;

·         Insurance issues as between Strata Corporation and Owner’s insurance re: deductibles and indemnity provisions under the bylaws;

·         Various compliance issues involving Strata Corporation, Strata Council, Strata members, property manager, owner-developer, warranty provider and rental pool manager under Strata Property Act, Real Estate Act, Real Estate Development Marketing Act, Homeowner Protection Act, Insurance Act and Human Rights Code;

·         Bylaw enforcement including court actions and injunctions;

·         City of  Vancouver board of variance issues involving proposed encroachments on Strata property;

·         Human Rights Tribunal experience in the context of Strata bylaws and operations, the most recent of which occurred in 2015 resulting in the dismissal of the complaint against the Strata Corporation in preliminary application;

·         Strata issues also engage full spectrum of common law and equity issues including fiduciary principles, libel and slander, torts and contractual remedies;

·         He has appeared at as well as conducted numerous Annual General Meetings and Special General Meetings on behalf of strata corporations.

Michael is a member of the Canadian Bar Association and the Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia.


  • Undergraduate Degree: University of British Columbia, Bachelor of Arts – Economics and History
  • Law Degree: University of British Columbia
  • Year Called to Bar: British Columbia, 1988

Areas of Practice

  • Civil litigation (emphasis on commercial disputes)
  • Strata property issues
  • Personal injury 
  • Family law

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