Community Association Governance

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

Court Says Short-Term Rentals are “Residential Purpose”

We’ve covered several cases over the past couple of years where state courts found that an association’s residential use restriction prohibited short-term rentals. But now the South Dakota Supreme Court has held otherwise. That court concluded that the definition of the term “residential purpose” includes short-term rentals (Wilson v. Maynard). “This is a different interpretation…

Surfside Update: The Call for Condo Safety Reforms, Part 2

In the first part of our two-part article on the Miami-Dade County grand jury report on the Surfside condo collapse, we examined some of the report’s most noteworthy recommendations and the implications for condo association boards. Now we take a look at what those recommendations might mean for managers and how the recommendations are likely…

Condo Board Can Negotiate Building Sale Without Owner Approval

In a previous article, we dove into the upswing in condo deconversions in some parts of the country, with multi-unit buildings that were converted from apartments years ago reverting back to rental units. The Illinois Court of Appeals recently issued an important ruling addressing owners’ ability to challenge such moves (Glazer v. The Private Residences…

How Associations Can Protect Their Board Members — And Keep Them on Board

Board member burnout isn’t new, but recent events also have members concerned about their potential liability, only compounding the effect on board retention. “It’s just been a really tough time for boards, and it already wasn’t a glorified position,” says Jennifer Biletnikoff, a shareholder in the Naples, Fla., office of Becker & Poliakoff. “I have…

Deconversion: Coming Soon to a Condo Near You?

Various parts of the country are seeing an uptick in condo deconversions, with multi-unit buildings that were converted from apartments years ago reverting back to that status. Owners may have dollar signs in their eyes and dreams of avoiding the costs of long deferred maintenance or modern upgrades, but they need to have the full…

Could You Be Liable for Neighbor-to-Neighbor Harassment?

A federal district court is allowing a former resident to pursue a lawsuit against an HOA and its management company alleging liability for an owner’s racial harassment. “The meat and potatoes of this case is really the hostile environment claim and whether the association and manager did enough to stop it,” says Kevin Hirzel, managing…

Repeat Offender Dog Can Be Asked To Leave, Court Concludes

A California HOA’s governing documents supported its board’s decision to order the removal of a dog with a history of injuring both humans and other dogs. “I love this case because it supports an association’s right to enforce its covenants by requiring removal of a dog,” says Sandra Gottlieb, a founding partner of California homeowner…

Rec Equipment Decisions Can Lead To Bias Allegations

The state of Maryland recently passed a new law after an HOA’s demand for the removal of basketball hoops raised questions of racial discrimination. The Maryland law generally prohibits condo associations and HOAs from imposing “unreasonable limitations” on the location and use of portable basketball hoops on an owner’s property. A state legislator initiated the…

Deconversions on the Rise: What You Need to Know

Various parts of the country are seeing an uptick in condo deconversions, with multi-unit buildings that were converted from apartments years ago reverting back to that status. Owners may have dollar signs in their eyes and dreams of avoiding the costs of long deferred maintenance or modern upgrades, but they need to have the full…

Court Allows Claims Against HOA, Manager for Neighbor-to-Neighbor Racial Abuse

A federal district court is allowing a former resident to pursue a lawsuit against an HOA and its management company alleging liability for an owner’s racial harassment (Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana, Inc. v. New). “The meat and potatoes of this case is really the hostile environment claim and whether the association and manager…