Recent Court Rulings

Recent Court Rulings

Board Could Install Chairlift in Common Area

January 14, 2016    

Facts: A condominium building’s board of directors voted to install a chairlift in one of the two stairwells to make the building more handicap accessible. A unit owner objected to the installation and voiced her concerns to the board. However, it applied for a building...

Trial Needed to Determine Responsibility for Condominium Easement

December 22, 2015    

Facts: A unit owner slipped and fell on a driveway leading to his condominium complex. He sued the association, seeking damages for injuries he suffered. The driveway, also known as the “east access road,” is located on property owned by a third party. The...

Board of Directors Not Liable for Maintenance Decisions

December 22, 2015    

Facts: The association and its management company were responsible under the association’s governing documents for maintaining the common areas of a condominium building. But the management company failed to waterproof areas of the building, leading to water intrusion and...

Special Assessment for Roadwork Wasn’t Deceptive

December 9, 2015    

Facts: A homeowners association used funds from a special assessment to complete roadwork in a subdivision of the planned community. Each homeowner was asked to pay $7,500. One of the homeowners paid his portion on time but later sued the association, seeking to recoup that...

Association Recorded Improper Lien on Townhouses

December 9, 2015    

Facts: The owner of two townhouse units performed renovations that were not permissible under the association’s governing documents. The association charged the owner several thousand dollars in penalties and fines. When the owner didn’t pay, the association imposed...

Purpose, Not Style of Structure Determined Declaration Compliance

November 10, 2015    

Facts: A homeowners association declaration permitted garages that are attached to a home, and accessory structures that are not used for storage and that are deemed acceptable by the design review committee. Two homeowners’ request to build a detached “garage...

Homeowner's Claim of Retribution Didn't Excuse Late Assessments

November 10, 2015    

Facts: A townhome owner failed to pay two years’ of association assessments due on the property. The association filed a small claims action seeking damages for the unpaid assessments, including late fees and attorney’s fees.

Covenant Allowed for Home-Based Daycare Businesses

November 10, 2015    

Facts: An association discovered that two homeowners in the community were operating daycare businesses in their homes. The association asked a trial court for a declaration that this was in violation of the restrictive covenant, and an injunction—that is, an order from...

Link to Governing Documents Wasn't 'Notice' of Rule Amendment

November 10, 2015    

Facts: Two homeowners moved into a planned community in 2009. The association fined them for bringing their dog into the clubhouse. The homeowners contested the fines. The homeowners argued that the fines were wrongly imposed because they hadn’t been properly notified of...

Arbitration Award in Favor of Association Wasn't Appealable

October 14, 2015    

Facts: A corporation owned several units in a condominium building governed by an association. After the corporation stopped paying assessments for its units, the association resorted to arbitration, in accordance with its bylaws. A representative of the corporation didn’t...

New Unit Owner on Hook for Existing Special Assessment Debt

October 14, 2015    

Facts: Condominium unit owners owed several thousand dollars in unpaid assessments, including their share of the cost of a special assessment. The special assessment could be paid by unit owners in a lump sum or split into a several-year monthly payment plan. The unit owners had...

Association Management Company Wasn't 'Debt Collector'

October 14, 2015    

Facts: The management company for a homeowners association sent a letter to a homeowner who was delinquent after failing to make several monthly payments to the association. The letter was a notice that the association, pursuant to its governing documents, held a lien on the...