Month: March 2011

Use Licensed Structural Engineer to Assess Concrete Cracks in Condo Building

Concrete cracks. They're a fact of life. Some cracks might not need attention, while others could have serious structural consequences. But how can you tell the difference? Much of the time you can't, and expert advice is required. After the beating your condominium building probably took this winter, you may notice cracks beginning to form in your façade or at other points in your building.

Association Lien Superior to Tax Lien Before Recorded Date

Facts: A member became delinquent on his assessment payments to the condo association starting in November 2008. The member had also failed to pay federal income tax, and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) assessed his tax obligation on March 17, 2008. The IRS didn't record a notice of federal tax lien until January 2009. And during this time, the member remained delinquent on his association assessments.

City Not Responsible for Condo Roads

The city of Brookfield, Wis., does not have to plow, maintain, or repair the private roads in condominium developments, the 2nd District Court of Appeals found in a recent decision.

Member Liable for Unpaid Dues and Late Fees

Facts: An association filed a small claims action against a member, seeking unpaid dues and late fees. The member filed a counterclaim alleging slander and defamation against two board members. At the hearing, the member admitted that he had not paid dues since 2007, but claimed that the association could not collect, because it was not a legal entity capable of initiating a lawsuit. The member argued that the association is in violation of several provisions of Indiana state law relating to associations.

Use Well-Drafted Architectural Review Form to Minimize Disputes

There are times when members may want to make modifications to their homes. In these instances, the concern for associations is that these changes may affect the harmonious design of a community, decrease property values, and increase liability. For example, low-quality construction can drive down property values, increase the premiums on your community's liability insurance, or even render important warranties void. Some types of work, such as a new roof deck, if not done right, can lead to injuries and increase your community's exposure to personal injury liability.

Association Can Foreclose on Condo Without Bank Intervention

Facts: A condominium association brought a foreclosure action against a member for unpaid maintenance fees and assessments. The member had purchased two condominium units in the building and had added an internal stairway to connect the two units. The units retained their separate addresses, and the upper unit had no loan recorded for it.

Underinsured Association Liable for Limited Flood-Related Damage

Facts: A member sued his condominium association for negligence for failing to pursue a claim on his behalf under the association's flood insurance policy. The member owned a basement condominium unit. The association held a flood insurance policy on the building, and the member held a separate, secondary flood insurance policy on the condominium. The member's policy contained a clause stating that it provided building coverage for flood-related damage in excess of the policy issued to the association.