Elaine T. McCormack, J.D.
Barrister & Solicitor
Suite 350, 500 Sixth Avenue
New Westminster, BC V3L 1V3
YEAR OF CALL TO THE BAR: 1993
Elaine T. McCormack, co-founder of Wilson McCormack Law Group, is an experienced barrister, solicitor, arbitrator and mediator. Her previous experience includes practicing as a general practitioner at a small law firm, being an entrepreneur running a boutique law firm, and as the head of the strata and dispute resolution departments at a large provincially based firm.
Ms. McCormack was called to the Bar in 1993 and practices primarily within the strata community. As a lawyer, Ms. McCormack passionately works for strata corporations, management companies and individual owners to establish proper governance, resolve disputes and to collect amounts owing. As an arbitrator and mediator, Ms. McCormack has worked with parties outside of and within the strata community.
Ms. McCormack has represented clients in Small Claims, the Supreme Court of British Columbia, at the BC Court of Appeal, and on human rights matters, privacy matters and in mediations and arbitrations. For instance, she obtained various orders for an owner of a commercial strata lot regarding parking and excess user charges resulting in the strata corporation being ordered to pay damages (B.P.Y.A. 1163 Holdings Ltd. v. The Owners, Strata Plan VR 2192, 2008 BCSC 695). She also obtained a court order for a group of owners so that unit entitlement was reduced for those strata lots without basements in Smith v. The Owners, Strata Plan LMS 1821 et al, 2007, BCSC 402 (S.C.). She successfully defended a strata corporation bylaw restricting the age of residents to 19 years of age and older in Drummond v. Strata Plan NW 2654 (2004), 34 B.C.L.R. (4th), 359 (S.C.). Ms. McCormack was co-counsel in a case that defined the transitional provisions between the Condominium Act and the Strata Property Act regarding the allocation of repair costs (see The Owners, Strata Plan LMS 1537 v. Alvarez (2003), 17 B.C.L.R. (4th) 63 (S.C.).). She has also successfully argued to uphold a strata corporation’s rental bylaw and payment of fines in Strata Plan NW 375 v. Izowski (2002), BCSC 924 (S.C.).
She has been a Chartered Arbitrator since 1998 and has adjudicated various disputes under the Strata Property Act, including matters concerning bylaw enforcement, use of property, rentals, rental pools, and allocation of costs between sections.
Ms. McCormack has extensive mediation training and is a member of the Mediate BC Roster. She has experience in many different types of mediations, including construction, employment, strata, and disputes between owner/developers and strata corporations.
Ms. McCormack believes it is important to educate the various stakeholders in the strata community. For owners, she is a regular speaker for the Condominium Home Owners Association (CHOA) and writes for the CHOA Journal and Strata-Sphere. She teaches seminars annually for CHOA. The seminar topics include bylaws, collections, and insurance. For strata managers and other professionals, Ms. McCormack has written for The Scrivener and is also a regular speaker for the Professional Association of Managing Agents (PAMA). She has taught the E&O Legal Update since 2014 in the Vancouver Lower Mainland, Victoria, Kelowna and at the PAMA Real Estate Conference in the Sun in Mexico. She also speaks frequently at Buildex for PAMA on current topics.
Ms. McCormack has also been a featured speaker and educator for the British Columbia Arbitration and Mediation Institute and the Construction Sub-Section of the Canadian Bar Association. She has held an executive position on the British Columbia Arbitration and Mediation Institute Board of Directors, as well as taught the professional training course on legal procedure to arbitrators and she has also taught strata law to mediators. She currently serves on the British Columbia Law Institute Strata Property Law Project Committee.