Community Association Governance

Governing Documents, CC&Rs, Bylaws, Rules and Regulations

On the Radar: Current Issues Confronting Community Association Managers

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…

Watch the Words: HOA’s Court Victory Doesn’t Assure Recovery of 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…

The Last Straw: How the Nuisance Provision Can Help Your Clients Deal with Residents’ Extreme Behaviors

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.” Extreme circumstances call for extreme…

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…

Foreclosures Require Strict Attention to All the Details

A Florida HOA didn’t provide an owner it was trying to foreclose on with documents required by the declaration. The result? The case is going to trial. The HOA filed a foreclosure action against an owner, alleging that he hadn’t paid outstanding quarterly assessments and costs. It asked the court to rule in its favor…

New Emergency Powers (and More) in Florida

A far-reaching new piece of legislation targeting community associations, Senate Bill (S.B.) 630, took effect in Florida on July 1, 2021. “It’s a mixed bag,” says Donna DiMaggio Berger, a shareholder in the Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., office of Becker & Poliakoff. “There’s some good stuff and some not so good stuff.” Good or bad, though,…

Emotional Support Animal vs. Severe Pet Allergies – Who Wins?

A no-pet policy. An owner who requests an emotional support animal (ESA). Another owner with severe pet allergies. What’s your client to do? A recent ruling by the Iowa Supreme Court demonstrates just how dicey this situation can be — even when a board tries its best to accommodate everyone. The case involved tenants in…

To Be or Not to Be: Vaccination Mandates for Owners and Vendors

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. Here’s what they need to know before they decide whether to require vaccinations of owners wishing to use amenities and third-party vendors coming on the property. Mandates for Amenities As is…

A Vivid Example of Why You Need Good Records

Poor recordkeeping can undermine the results of even the most amiable and productive board or membership meeting. When a meeting is contentious, insufficient records can prove even more disastrous. A community in Pennsylvania learned that the hard way. A trial court described the community as mired in utter chaos, nonstop disagreement, and a continuing power struggle…

Foreclosure Fundamentals: Follow All the Rules

A Florida HOA didn’t provide an owner it was trying to foreclose on with documents required by the declaration. The result? The case is going to trial (Pash v. Mahogany Way Homeowners Ass’n). Read on to learn some important lessons about how to handle foreclosures. Budget Procedures Matter The HOA filed a foreclosure action against…