Acts and Regulations

Retirement Homes are governed by the following acts and regulations:

The Retirement Homes Act (RHA)

The Retirement Homes Act was passed in 2010 and is being gradually phased in, with the final phase to come into effect in 2014. Generally, it provides for:

  • Requirement of retirement homes to possess a licence to operate
  • Residents’ rights
  • Setting care standards and staff training requirements
  • Protections against abuse and neglect
  • Inspections and powers of inspectors
  • Offences, penalties, appeals and enforcement

You can read the act here and the related regulations: Ontario Regulation 166/11 and Ontario Regulation 53/12.

The Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority is the regulatory agency created as a result of the Retirement Homes Act. Their duties are:

  • To license retirement homes
  • Inspect retirement homes, oversee compliance and enforce the Retirement Homes Act
  • Maintain a public register of information about applicants and licensees
  • Inform the public and educate the retirement home sector and residents about the Act, regulations and role of the RHRA

The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA)

The Residential Tenancies Act applies to most residential rental units including retirement homes (referred to as care homes). Some of the key aspects for care homes:

The home must give every new tenant a Care Home Information Package, which includes:

  • A list of the different types of accommodation provided in the home and any alternative packages of care services and meals
  • Charges for the different types of accommodation and for any alternative packages of care services and meals
  • Minimum staffing level in the home and qualifications of staff
  • Details about the emergency response system
  • A list and fee schedule for any additional services and meals available from the landlord on a user pay basis
  • A description of any internal procedures for dealing with complaints
  • The home must give the tenant at least 90 days’ notice in writing of any increase in rent and the rent can only be increased once every 12 months
  • The home must give the tenant at least 90 days’ notice in writing of any increase in fees for care services (no restrictions on these fee increases)
  • The tenant must give the home at least 30 days’ notice to end their tenancy

Other provincial legislation and regulations that may apply:

Health Care Consent Act and Substitute Decision Act

Occupational Health and Safety Act

Workplace Safety and Insurance Act

Personal Health Information Protection Act

College of Nurses Standards

Health Protection and Promotion Act

Ontario Fire Code

Ontario Fire Protection and Prevention Act

Smoke Free Ontario Act

Labour Relations Act

Employment Standards Act

Regulated Health Professionals Act

Health Care Consent Act

Nursing Act