Citizens’ landscaping suffered substantial damages during works on the aqueduct system.

The owners submit that, at the time, an employee of Arrondissement de Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce had assured them that their property would be repaired by the borough. After many months of follow-ups, however, the borough told them to do the repairs themselves and to subsequently submit a claim to the City, which they did.

The Bureau des réclamations (Claims office), rejected the claim because it had been submitted after the expiry of the time limit: the delays for suing the City are, indeed, very short. This right to sue had already expired when the citizens received the information that they had to do the work themselves and then, submit their claim.

Our investigation revealed that shortly after the completion of the municipal works, the borough adopted a new procedure in virtue of which citizens are now systematically informed, in writing, of the procedure to follow, if their property is damaged during City works. The new documents clearly states that the City will not do the repairs and that citizens must submit a claim to Ville de Montréal’s Claims office with an estimate of the costs, within 15 working days following the date on which the damages were caused.

However, this policy was not in effect at the time of events. Moreover, in the present case, the plaintiffs’ version of events appeared credible, both to the OdM and to the borough.

The borough accepted, therefore, to compensate these citizens. Which was done, to their satisfaction.

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