I am a real estate agent based in Toronto and I was looking over a lease agreement that a friend of mine signed. I noticed that 5-7 out of the 25 clauses in the agreement were in direct contravention of the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (the primary piece of legislation governing rules for tenants and landlords).

Now I was curious, as these clauses which are not legal aren't in relation to the core of the agreement (if there is such a thing), so would the fact that there are multiple clauses in contravention if the act, albeit minor, mean that he contract lacked lawful object?

I apologize in advance if I've muddled terminology here, as you can imagine, I'm not a lawyer.

1 Answer 1


I think you're asking if the presence of some illegal conditions invalidates the entire contract. It doesn't: the courts will strike those clauses out and make sense of the rest. That assumes that the remainder of the clauses can be interpreted without the tenancy law. The Residential Tenancies Act says

4 (1) Subject to subsection 12.1 (11) and section 194, a provision in a tenancy agreement that is inconsistent with this Act or the regulations is void.

(Subsection 12.1 says

(1) Every tenancy agreement that is entered into in respect of a tenancy of a prescribed class on or after the date prescribed for that class of tenancies shall comply with the following requirements:

  1. The tenancy agreement shall be in the form prescribed for that class of tenancies.

  2. The tenancy agreement shall comply with the requirements prescribed for that class of tenancies.

and 194 is about mediation).

  • That's exactly what I'm asking, thanks for rephrasing it so succinctly! Sep 2, 2017 at 1:32

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