Risk Management

Court Upholds HOA’s Right to Tiki Bar on Access Easement

Your clients and their owners probably think they understand the rights that so-called access easements convey. “It sounds pretty self-explanatory,” says David Wilson, who heads up the South Carolina community association department at the law firm Black, Slaughter & Black, P.A. But, as a North Carolina court recently found, an access easement isn’t limited solely…

How to Deal with Hoarders, Part Two: 5 Steps to Take to Tackle Hoarding

In the June 2020 issue of Community Management Association Insider, we explained why owners’ hoarding should matter to their associations and highlighted several red flags for such behavior. Now we dig into just what an association can do in such circumstances. “You need to be very careful with how you approach the situation because of…

Mediation Can Help Preempt Liability for Neighbor-to-Neighbor Harassment

Few community association board members ever want to get involved in neighbor-to-neighbor disputes — but, under a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) rule, sticking their heads in the sand could result in association liability for harassment under the Fair Housing Act (FHA). “The HUD regulations were adopted in October 2016,” says Brendan…

How Associations Can Avoid Liability for Neighborhood Harassment

Several years ago, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued a final rule that makes community associations potentially liable under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) for harassment committed by third parties based on a protected characteristic — including neighbor-to-neighbor harassment. “The HUD regulations were adopted in October 2016,” says Brendan Bunn, a…

How to Combat the Risks of Reopening

When the severity of the coronavirus became apparent this past spring, many community associations responded by shutting down their common area recreational facilities, whether required by governmental order or not. As time has passed and governmental restrictions have been rolled back, they’ve had to figure out how to proceed with their facilities. Making facilities available…

Proceed with Caution: What to Consider When Reopening Facilities

As stay-at-home orders have lifted or at least eased, community associations have faced difficult questions about how to reopen the recreational facilities they shuttered after the coronavirus (COVID-19) hit. And they could find themselves in the same position later this year or next if the expected second wave of the virus materializes. Making facilities available…

Recognizing the Telltale Signs of Hoarding

When owners volunteer for their associations’ boards of directors, they probably don’t expect that their responsibilities will include dealing with mental health issues, but they can and increasingly do — for example, when an owner appears to be a hoarder. While your clients may prefer not to get involved in such situations, that would be…

How to Deal with Hoarders, Part One: Identifying the Problem

Hoarding is more than just fodder for reality TV fans. The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has formally recognized it as a disorder that affects an estimated 2 to 6 percent of the population. According to the APA, sufferers excessively save items that others may view as worthless, leading to clutter that disrupts their ability to…

Owner Sues Manager and Board Over His Own Tenant’s Behavior

Owners renting their units can lead to all sorts of complications for a community, but, just when you think you’ve got your arms around the potential issues, another one can pop up. The manager and board of directors for a condominium association in New York City, for example, probably never considered the possibility that an…

For the Dogs (and More!): HUD Issues New Guidance on Assistance Animals

Requests for assistance animals continue to dog many associations. How can they balance their obligations to owners with disabilities with the interests of their neighbors? The process is riddled with potential pitfalls. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently released new guidance that can help your clients understand the kind of inquiries…