Month: May 2009

Association Allowed to Hold Special Meeting

Facts: A dispute arose between a member and her neighbors regarding access to the member's air conditioning unit for servicing through a trapdoor in a fence separating their two properties. As the dispute intensified, the neighbors circulated two letters to other members of the association to have the member removed from the association's board of directors. The letters accused the director of abusing her position as chair of the architecture and landscape committee and lying to other members of the board.

Association Must Sue Individuals of Dissolved Company for Construction Defects

Facts: A Washington condominium association sued the limited liability company that developed the condominium for construction defects. However, after the building was completed, the company ceased active operations and did not pay license fees or file reports as required by law. Eventually, the secretary of state administratively dissolved the company.

Association Not Liable for Defamation

Facts: In a rural California homeowners association with 16 members, one member witnessed two dogs attack his pet goat. He chased them off and followed them to their owner's house. The member told other members in the area, including the association president, about the attack.

Arbitration Required for Rental Restriction Dispute

Facts: An Ohio condominium association adopted an amendment to its governing documents that reduced the number of rental units allowed in the community. A group of owners filed for a court declaration, alleging that the amendment was invalid because it affected the fundamental purpose of the owner's unit. They argued that according to the governing documents, 100 percent of the members had to approve it rather than the 75 percent who did, because the amendment affected a fundamental purpose of a condominium unit.

Association Not Liable for Discrimination

Facts: An association member enlarged his front stoop and the back patio of his townhouse in violation of the governing documents. The association fined him $500, ordered him to restore his property to its original condition, and suspended his voting rights as a member of its board of directors for 60 days.

Fannie and Freddie Roll Out New Loan Fees, Appraisal Reform

The two government-sponsored mortgage giants, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, are raising their loan fees and implementing a new program to cut down on abusive appraisals.

Latest on Sex Offender Registration and Residency Restrictions

The possible presence of a sex offender within a community gives rise to unique issues. Oftentimes, associations' governing documents impose duties on the board of directors to maintain “safe” conditions for association members. Thus, the board of directors may have a duty to act once board members learn of a sex offender living within the community.

How to Prepare Your Community, Management Office for a Pandemic Flu

A pandemic flu is a global outbreak of disease originating from a new flu virus. Since most people have little or no natural immunity to these new flu strains, pandemic flus are likely to be more severe than seasonal flus with greater risk of hospitalization and death.