eAlerts


New Case Highlights That Parking Availability Can Be a Safety Issue

The California Court of Appeal recently ruled that a condominium association didn’t have a duty to provide adequate on-site parking for invitees and therefore wasn’t liable for injuries a guest sustained after parking off-site. But the court left the door open to an association’s liability for off-site injury in some circumstances. One evening in June…

When Resolving Conflicts, Stick to the Facts

Conflicts, whether between the board and owners or among owners themselves, are inevitable. But successful resolution isn’t. Some of our experts have advice on how managers can help their boards handle these disputes so they don’t spin out of control. “You have to get rid of the emotional baggage,” says Michael Kim, of counsel with…

When Is a Closed Session Appropriate?

Closed sessions are among the most frequently abused governance tools in community associations, according to Kelly Richardson, a partner in the law firm Richardson Ober De Nichilo in Pasadena, Calif. “I frequently see boards conducting discussions in closed session where the topic really should be reserved for open session,” he says. Richardson says closed sessions…

Tunnel Vision Leads To Contentious Communities – How To Turn Things Around

Community associations that harbor acrimony and hostility are among the most difficult to manage and govern. With the country seemingly at odds more than ever, managers need to step up and do their part to promote healing in divided communities. “Associations are becoming more polarized,” says Brad van Rooyen, national VP of HOA management for…

Business Judgment Rule Protections Can Vanish Amid Conflicts of Interest

Conflicts of interest can strip board members of the protections they otherwise might have under the business judgment rule. A case involving a California HOA recently drove that point home. “The case really demonstrates the limits of the business judgment rule and how it’s very easy to step outside the limits of the law if…

What Community Association Managers Worry About These Days

With COVID-19 vaccinations widely available and government restrictions dramatically loosened, community association managers have more bandwidth to deal with matters that might have been neglected during the pandemic. We asked some of our experts about the issues they were now turning their attention to. Unfortunately, while COVID concerns have receded, they’ve been replaced with a…

Don’t Get Stuck Paying Attorney’s Fees

When associations sue owners, they typically rely on language in the governing documents that provides the owner must pay the association’s costs if it prevails. But the Missouri Supreme Court recently ruled that an HOA that successfully sued an owner over unapproved construction was on the hook for its own nearly $84,000 in attorney’s fees.…

Nuisance Provisions Can Help Curb Behaviors That Go Beyond Mere Annoyance

It’s one thing when a tenant occasionally doesn’t clean up after his dog. It’s another, says Scott Weiss, of counsel for the Nashville, Tenn., law firm Ortale Kelley, “when you have repetitive violations of the governing documents, drug dealing, loud parties, or damage to common elements or other owners’ property.” The natural step when a…

These Days, Are Safety Measures More About Protection From Lawsuits?

The media have been blasting headlines about rising crime, but the message doesn’t seem to be getting much traction with many community associations. While they may have implemented what ostensibly are security tools, these associations are deploying them more to monitor residents than to combat crimes against people or property. “Security these days is less…

Can Your Clients Impose Vaccine Requirements?

If your clients are facing pressure to both re-open amenities and keep their residents safe from COVID-19, they might be considering imposing vaccine requirements. As is so often the case, boards find themselves in a difficult position when it comes to safely managing indoor common areas this summer. “It’s a tricky business,” says Donna DiMaggio…