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How to locate someone who is in jail in Toronto?
January 19, 2014 6:57 PM   Subscribe

My tenant has not been home for 2.5 weeks and when I called the police on Friday to report him missing I was informed he is currently in police custody, awaiting trial. Since my tenant owes me over four months' rent (soon to be five), and I've discovered that his apartment is a disgusting, filthy mess, this is the last straw. I need to talk to him right away to find out whether he'll agree to let me into his apartment to pack up his stuff, clean, paint and repair the apartment and find a new tenant for March 1st, or whether he wants to drag this out and force me to evict him. I don't know where he is being held or what the charges are, or whether/when he's being allowed visitors. How can I find this out? I'm in Toronto and presumably my tenant is being held somewhere in Toronto or at least in Ontario.
posted by orange swan to Law & Government (20 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
When is a home considered "abandoned" by a tenant in your area?
posted by JujuB at 7:11 PM on January 19


What do the police say when you contact them? What contact information do you have for your tenant--place of employment, emergency contact number, etc.?
posted by dfriedman at 7:13 PM on January 19


When is a home considered "abandoned" by a tenant in your area?

I would have to serve notice that I consider it abandoned and wait 30 days, and if my tenant should come home in that time I would be back to square one. I want to get working on the apartment ASAP, so I don't want to go that route.

I am going to call the Landlord and Tenant Board tomorrow and find out what my options are for eviction, so probably no need to offer advice on that aspect of this situation.
posted by orange swan at 7:16 PM on January 19


If there is rent due, there must still be substantial evidence of abandonment before the landlord can re-rent the unit or deal with the tenant’s property that is remaining in the unit.

The landlord should make reasonable efforts to contact the tenant to determine if they have left the unit (for example, by writing the tenant or calling them at different times each day). The landlord should give the tenant a reason to reply to a letter and should keep notes of the times and dates that they telephoned. The failure of the tenant to respond to the letters and telephone calls should be consistent with the abandonment of a unit and not with a tenant who is on vacation or out of town on business.

If the unit has been abandoned, in accordance with subsection 42(1), the landlord may dispose of any of the tenant’s property found in the unit provided that one of the following conditions is met:

1. The landlord applied to the Board and obtained an order terminating the tenancy based on the abandonment of the rental unit.

OR

2. The landlord gave a notice to the tenant and to the Board stating that the landlord intends to dispose of the property if the tenant does not claim the property within 30 days of the notice being given.

If either of these conditions has been met, the landlord may immediately dispose of anything unsafe or unhygienic and, after 30 days following the issuance of the order or the giving of the notice, may dispose of any other tenant belongings. If a tenant does claim the belongings within the 30 day period, they must pay the landlord any arrears of rent and any reasonable costs of moving, storing and securing the property.
Landlord and Tenant Board Ontario
posted by JujuB at 7:20 PM on January 19


What do the police say when you contact them? What contact information do you have for your tenant--place of employment, emergency contact number, etc.?

The police simply told me my tenant is in custody. I asked what he had done and how long he would be held, and they said they couldn't tell me what he had done and the length of his jail time would be up to the judge. I didn't think to ask where my tenant was or whether I could visit him. My tenant's phone number is out of service. I contacted his brother when I was looking for him, and his brother didn't know where he was until I told him, so his family knows less about this than I do. My tenant works for his father's company so his "employer" will be no help either.

I really just need advice on how to find and talk to my tenant here.
posted by orange swan at 7:26 PM on January 19


Start your eviction procedure now, so it can run simultaneously while you try to locate and talk with your tenant. That way if you can't find him, or can't talk to him, you are not out time on the eviction process.
posted by Ardea alba at 7:33 PM on January 19 [9 favorites]


I don't know how it is in Toronto, but in California where I live, when I need to find out if someone I need to get a hold of is in jail, I make a list of the jails and call them til I find him. They just go in the back and check if my guy is there and tell me. I don't think there's an expectation of privacy in one's incarceration status.
posted by fingersandtoes at 7:35 PM on January 19 [1 favorite]


The police simply told me my tenant is in custody. I asked what he had done and how long he would be held, and they said they couldn't tell me what he had done and the length of his jail time would be up to the judge.

It sounds like you didn't ask the police where he was or if you could visit. Maybe try calling back with those specific questions?
posted by sparklemotion at 7:36 PM on January 19 [4 favorites]


Here's a link to Ontario jails

A prisoner's support forum I found suggested calling Toronto East (one of the facilities on that list) was the best way to find an imate if you didn't know which jail he was in. Here is their number: Tel.: 416-750-3513
posted by layceepee at 7:37 PM on January 19 [3 favorites]


You should be able to search the court hearing lists for his name and see if he's had his first appearance. That might also show the name of his lawyer. If you get his lawyer's name (either from the court site or from the police), that person can be helpful as a liaison. I've done this when trying to reach incarcerated folks for other reasons and it worked well.
posted by Pomo at 8:37 PM on January 19


When I wanted to know what was up with someone in jail - I called the jail and asked for the person's parole officer. It's unlikely this guy is in for the first time so he probably also has a parole officer. Then when I got the parole officer's number they spoke freely with me about what the person was allowed to do (that was my question). They were very helpful.
posted by cda at 10:48 PM on January 19


Call the Landlord Self-Help Centre before you go to the Board - they can give you legal advice on how to deal with this. Staff at the Board can't give you legal advice, just information about your options.

416-504-5190
posted by iona at 4:18 AM on January 20


I've located my tenant at a detention centre here in Toronto. It took two phone calls. First I called the general number and was put through to someone who suggested that I call the main detention centre for my area because they'd probably have him. I called there and they confirmed that he was there and told me what the visiting hours are. I will likely be visiting him tomorrow morning. Both people I talked to were incredibly pleasant, friendly, and helpful. Thanks all!
posted by orange swan at 9:20 AM on January 20 [5 favorites]


Get any agreement in writing. Good luck!
posted by Dasein at 2:47 PM on January 20 [2 favorites]


Oh yes, I have prepared two sets of forms to take with me tomorrow: Form N11, which is the Agreement to Terminate a Tenancy form; and Form N4, which is the Notice to End a Tenancy Early For Non-Payment of Rent form. If my tenant will not sign the first, he will be served with the latter. But I am hoping he'll be reasonable and we can work this out amicably.
posted by orange swan at 4:15 PM on January 20 [1 favorite]


Arghh, I was all ready to leave for the prison this morning when I called ahead to make sure I would be able to visit. Turns out my tenant had a court date today, so I wasn't able to visit today. Now I'm going to have to wait another day before I can do anything. Don't know what will happen after today or how soon I will be able to talk to my tenant now. He might be released which will mean he'll be coming home, he might be returned to the detention centre, or he might be transferred to another facility.
posted by orange swan at 10:18 AM on January 21


I called again yesterday to find out if I could visit, and was told my tenant made bail on Monday. But he hasn't come home. Now how do I find him?
posted by orange swan at 4:51 AM on January 23


Start with his brother/employer again. And:

1. The landlord applied to the Board and obtained an order terminating the tenancy based on the abandonment of the rental unit.

Apply to the board ASAP.
posted by sparklemotion at 7:37 AM on January 23


I served my tenant with a notice of abandonment on January 17 by slipping the letter under his door and sending a duplicate of the letter to the Landlord and Tenant Board. If he does not come home or pay the rent by February 16th, I may change the locks, take possession of the apartment and do whatever I want with all his stuff. If he does come home before then, I'll be serving him with a Notice to End a Tenancy Early for Non-Payment of Rent, but that's a much longer process.

I wonder where the hell he can be. He has no money to pay for accommodations anywhere else.
posted by orange swan at 5:17 PM on January 23 [2 favorites]


My tenant contacted me this morning. He is with his surety. He did come home yesterday to get some clothes. He has agreed to end his tenancy effective the end of February, though he will not be living in the apartment between now and then, and he will allow me immediate access to clean, paint, and repair the apartment so I can get it rented out March 1st. We've agreed on the amount that he owes me and he's promising to pay some back each month until it is repaid. I told him I wanted him to sign some documentation this effect, and he agreed that he would. He's also promised to pick up his belongings as soon as he can.

I spent five hours this afternoon sorting through the contents of the apartment bathroom and kitchen, and though those rooms are still filthy, I have his stuff packed and the garbage disposed of. Tomorrow I will clear the bedroom, and after that begin to clean, paint and repair the apartment one room at a time. So, it seems to be working itself out.
posted by orange swan at 5:03 PM on January 24 [3 favorites]


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