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No purrfect evidence: B.C. tribunal dismisses complaint against neighbours' cats

Jaime Lee Metcalfe alleged her neighbours' cats entered her unit and caused damage to her property by peeing and pooping.
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The tribunal found the applicant failed to prove the respondents' cats caused any damage to their property.

B.C.’s Civil Resolution Tribunal has dismissed a complaint from a woman who alleged her neighbours’ cats damaged property by entering her unit and urinating and defecating there.

In an Oct. 30 decision, tribunal member Nav Shukla said complainant Jaime Lee Metcalfe and respondents Jamie Major and Corbin Major live in the same house. 

Shukla said Metcalfe also alleged there were flies in her unit because of the cat urine.

“The applicant says that this has caused issues for their entire family including vomiting, headaches, and severe dizziness,” Shukla said.

Metcalfe claimed $5,000 in damages for alleged property damage and pain and suffering.

The Majors said there was no way their cats could have entered Metcalfe’s unit and caused any alleged damage. They further said any flies were likely due to garbage left around by Metcalfe.

They asserted she had fabricated her claims and asked that the dispute be dismissed.

The Majors provided evidence that a connecting door between the two suites was sealed with a vapour barrier. And, the landlord said there was no way the cats could enter the suite as the door is closed.

Further, the landlord said, flies Metcalfe complained about were likely from garbage she leaves by the front door as she always leaves the front door open.

“I find the applicant has failed to prove that the respondents’ cats have caused any damage to their property,” Shukla said.

“I also find it unproven that the respondents’ cats have caused the applicant to suffer from any alleged headaches, vomiting, or dizziness,” Shukla said. “As a whole, I find the applicant’s claims, including their claimed damages, unproven.”