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AL: Homeowners’ associations face scrutiny

A state task force is looking into homeowners’ associations and whether they’re too restrictive. One Montgomery resident says he knows the issues firsthand.  Read More……

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Recovering Attorneys’ Fees in HOA Election Disputes

The California Court of Appeal’s recent ruling in a case underscores how crucial it is for HOAs to strictly comply with the Civil Code’s election procedures and requirements.  The court in That v. Alders Maintenance Association (2012) applied Civil Code

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AZ: Class Action Filed Against AZ HOA Management Companies

Class Action Lawsuit Filed by Arizona Homeowners Against Arizona HOA Management Companies Alleging Millions of Dollars of Damages for Violations of Federal Debt Collection Laws and Arizona Law  Read More……

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Florida Bar committee asks for opinion on community associations

The Florida Bar’s committee on the unlicensed practice of law approved a request Thursday for an advisory opinion on whether certain actions taken by community associations should be completed only by attorneys.  Read More……

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Court orders new trial in Florida hurricane case

A federal appellate court has reversed a $7.2 million judgment and ordered a new trial in a Florida hurricane insurance case. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeal issued the ruling Thursday in Atlanta based on a May opinion by the Florida

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Australia: Whole new storey: strata laws with less red tape, more people power

There’s a saying in politics that you don’t ask a question unless you know the answer. A discussion paper released at the weekend by the Fair Trading Minister, Anthony Roberts, offers almost 70 pages of possible answers for a proposed

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Rogers Towers: Defeating Homeowner’s Association Claims for Unpaid Assessments in Foreclosure Cases

When is a first mortgagee not liable for any unpaid HOA assessments that came due prior to taking title? Judging solely by the text of § 720.3085(2)(b), it would seem that a first mortgagee that takes title to property through

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Court opinions could change residential lending

The landscape for residential lenders in Oregon and Washington is changing quickly. Three recent appellate court opinions have the potential to significantly impact how residential lenders do business in the Pacific Northwest.  Read More……

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Seattle floating homes and the U.S. Supreme Court

On the legendary first Monday in October, the U.S. Supreme Court in the Other Washington will hear arguments in a Florida case with important implications for inhabitants of the most famous residences in Seattle.  Read More……

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VA: Community Associations and the Power to Adopt Rules and Regulations: Is it more limited than we think?

Community Associations that have adopted rules and regulations that permit the association to avail itself of the enforcement capabilities found in Va. Code Ann. § 55-79.80:2 or § 55-513(B) should have counsel review the governing documents or condominium instruments, as

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CO: Senator Newell’s Town Hall Meeting Highlights Challenges of Self-Managed HOAs

On Saturday morning, State Senator Linda Newell, who represents most of the South Metro Denver area, held a phenomenal Town Hall Meeting which focused on homeowners’ associations (“HOAs”) and related issues. The turnout for the meeting was excellent and the

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MS Supreme Court Finds Nothing in Covenants Restricting Use of Land for Church

Long Meadow is a subdivision of forty-eight lots. The lots were developed in three phases. The first two phases had restrictive covenants that limited development to single-family residential units. The third phase lots did not have such covenants recorded so

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Legislators say new ISLA bill offers developers “stability”

New York’s representatives to the United States Senate and House of Representatives early last month introduced a pair of bills intended to exempt condominiums from the Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act, or ILSA. Read More……

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Court Decisions May Make it Harder for Condominium Associations to Restrict Free Speech Rights of Owners

In condominiums as in society generally, laws and legal theories change over time as technologies, economies and stoical structures evolve. The changes are usually slow, often (though not always) welcome, and occasionally jarring. An apparent change in condominium law falls

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Virginia: Complaint Procedures for Community Associations

The Common Interest Community Ombudsman has approved final regulations for the required Complaint Procedure which are effective July 1, 2012. Community associations have until September 29, 2012 to adopt a Complaint Procedure.  Read More……PDF

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Indiana AG files lawsuit against three board members of The Harbours

“Today’s lawsuit is the first of its kind under a new state law allowing the Attorney General’s Office to regulate homeowner associations,” said Gabrielle Owens, director of the Homeowner Protection Unit and Licensing Enforcement Unit of the Indiana Attorney General’s

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FHA Signals Release of New Condominium Guidelines

FHA officials have confirmed to CAI their intention to release revisions to existing condominium approval guidelines prior to September 1. The new requirements are pending final approval by FHA Acting Commissioner Carol Galante  Read More……PDF

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Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Change Short sale Requirements

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have announced changes to short sale policies to help more borrowers  avoid foreclosure and stabilize neighborhoods. Mortgage servicing companies will begin using the new short sale procedures in early November. Read More……PDF

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Treasury Department Announces Further Steps to Expedite Wind Down of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

The U.S. Department of the Treasury today announced a set of modifications to the Preferred Stock Purchase Agreements (PSPAs) between the Treasury Department and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) as conservator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Government

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Kent County considers HOA changes

Kent County Levy Court is considering a package of ordinance changes designed to help the county’s nearly 200 homeowners associations operate more smoothly. County planning officials have been working for months with a group of citizens and developers to craft

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IL: Amendments to Common Interest Community Assn Act (HOA/POA)

Amendments to Common Interest Community Assn Act (non-condo’s) signed into law August 2012  Read More……

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Iowa: New law to allow for easier viewing of mechanic’s liens

Less than a week after Regency Homes LC went of business in 2008, contractors and suppliers filed mechanic’s liens in Polk County District Court saying they were owed more than $1 million by the company, once the state’s largest home

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Canyon Lake POA lawsuit against former managers details allegations

As announced last week by POA President Dawn Haggerty, the Canyon Lake Property Owners Association has filed lawsuits against three former senior managers and former legal counsel. In addition to the lawsuits, the Results and Findings of Special Investigation presented

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Recent Cases Pose New Challenges for Condo Boards

Attorneys and judges have always recognized that community associations are, for all practical purposes, quasi-governmental in nature. They are empowered by statute to levy “taxes” (in the form of assessments) and enact and enforce their own “laws” (being their restrictions,

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Maryland Court of Appeals Revises Pit Bull Ruling — Strict Liability Remains For Owners Of Pure Breds and Their Landlords But Not Cross Breds

After granting a motion to reconsider its ruling imposing strict liability on the owners of pit bulls and their landlords, the Maryland Court of Appeals has revised its decision by keeping the ruling in place as to pure bred pit

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Couple files suit alleging neighbor’s 20 cats damaged their condo

A married couple living in a Lakeview condominium filed a lawsuit Monday in Cook County Circuit Court against a neighbor, their condominium association, individual board members and property managers, claiming their downstairs neighbor’s approximately 20 cats have caused odors of

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Federal Housing Finance Agency Publishes Rule Regarding Capital Contributions, CondoFees, Flip Taxes, HOA Transfer Fees, etc.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (“FHFA”) recently published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking directing Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Bank System to regulate transfer fees paid to common interest community associations. While the revised FHFA draft

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New Davis-Stirling Act Signed into Law

Governor Brown recently signed AB 805 and AB 806 into law. AB 805 takes effect on January 1, 2014, and comprehensively reorganizes and recodifies the Davis-Stirling Common Interest Development Act. The bill also revises and recasts provisions regarding notices and

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Do HOA Managers Often Practice Without a License?

This question was posed to the Florida Bar’s Standing Committee on the Unlicensed Practice of Law, who held a hearing on the issue.  Read More……PDF

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Some Possible Implications Arising From California Supreme Court’s Pinnacle Decision

On August 16, 2012, our state supreme court issued its opinion in Pinnacle Museum Tower Assn. v. Pinnacle Market Development, Case No. S186149 (Cal. Sup. Ct. Aug.16, 2012). The high court found that CC&Rs mandating arbitration between developers and homeowner

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Privity, Shmivity, Says The California Supreme Court – A Provision To Arbitrate Construction Disputes In Recorded CC&Rs Will Be Honored If Not Unreasonable

Arbitration is a matter of consent, right? Because there can be no meaningful consent between a developer that drafts covenants, conditions, and restrictions containing a provision requiring arbitration of construction disputes, and a homeowner’s association (HOA) that doesn’t yet exist,

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Homeowner Associations/POOF!: Strange Procedural Posture Requires Reversal Of $46,300 Fee/Costs Order When Judgment of Dismissal Reversed in Fourth Appeal of Dispute Involving Homeowner and HOA

Well, the fourth appeal in a longstanding mold/water intrusion/infestation dispute between a homeowner and HOA involved homeowners’ challenge to a judgment of dismissal in favor of HOA as well as the lower court’s order awarding HOA attorney’s fees of $37,336

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Judge Lifts 770 Sandy Street Condemnation Order

According to The Times Herald, Montgomery County Common Pleas Court Judge Bernard Moore lifted the more that two-year-old condemnation order on the Rittenhouse Club Condominium at 770 Sandy Street Friday morning.  Read More……

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Ruling could change course of collection proceedings

Delinquent condominium owners historically have been told to pay up, no matter how well the board took care of the property. But an Illinois appellate court this summer said just the opposite. The ground-breaking decision could change the course of

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CA State High Court Backs Arbitration Clauses Invoked by Developers

In a broad victory for contractual arbitration that called to mind recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions, the California Supreme Court ruled Thursday that a homeowners association can be forced to arbitrate construction defect suits via land use restrictions recorded by

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FL: 2012 Legislative Update: Impact on Community Associations

The 2012 Legislative Session was very busy with regards to community association legislation. The ultimate fate of many of the community association bills that were filed by various legislators was not known until the last day of session. Unfortunately, the

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Court sides with contractor over subrogation for damages from burst pipe

A federal district judge in Miami has sided with a heating, ventilation and air conditioning contractor against an insurer seeking subrogation for damages paid related to a burst pipe during Hurricane Katrina at a luxury condominium building in Miami.  Read

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Association as Employer: what laws do you need to know about?

We don’t often think about community associations in the context of labor law but the majority of associations do have at least one employee and some large master associations have dozens. The largest association employer I ever met actually bought

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Association told to fix condo balconies

A judge has ruled that Effingham Green Condominium associations are responsible for repairs of faulty balconies identified a year ago, according to court records. Read More……

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Free Speech in Community Associations

The New Jersey Supreme Court has recently decided that an outright prohibition of political signs in a community association is unconstitutional.  While the ruling will most likely result in future rulings with different facts, it does provide a concise rebuttal

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Insurer Says It Should Not Have to Pay for Trayvon Martin’s Death

Traveler’s Insurance sued Trayvon Martin’s mother and The Retreat at Twin Lakes Homeowners’ Association, where her son was killed, claiming it has no responsibility to defend the HOA or cover the teenager’s death.   Travelers Casualty and Surety Company of

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Who Pays For The Defamation Lawsuit in an HOA?

The person told me that their association board had just been asked by a board member to file a lawsuit against an individual for defamation. The interesting thing was that the lawsuit if filed would be against another board member.

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Omaha couple to get second chance at day care case

The Nebraska Supreme Court is giving an Omaha couple another chance to make the case that they were unfairly ordered by their homeowner’s association to shutter their home-based child care service.  Read More……

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Columbia Association bill raises suspicion

A bill to change the way the Columbia Association is defined in state law is portrayed by the organization’s lawyer as a necessary housekeeping measure, but the legislation seems to have an image problem. Read More……

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Owner of First National Center in Oklahoma City pleads guilty to embezzlement, faces up to 10-year prison sentence

Aaron Yashouafar, owner of Oklahoma City’s landmark First National Center, will have to pay $1 million to tenants of a Nevada condominium complex and faces up to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to one felony count of embezzlement.

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FL High court reveals secret deal of Trump developer’s crimes

Dozens of explosive records released by the U.S. Supreme Court show a developer of the failed Trump tower in Fort Lauderdale helped put away dangerous Mafia soldiers — while prosecutors struck a secret deal to conceal his charges in a

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Arbitration Decision Coming Soon

On Tuesday, May 29, 2012, the California Supreme Court heard arguments from both sides in Pinnacle Museum Tower Association v. Pinnacle Market Development, in which the Court will decide whether a homeowners association is bound by an arbitration provision contained

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AB 1720 Signed into Law Requiring Access to Gated Communities for Licensed Private Investigators for the Limited Purpose of Service of Process

California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed AB 1720 into law. The bill, introduced by Assembly Member Norma Torres, aims at ensuring that state-licensed private investigators are provided access to gated communities to serve process, just as licensed private investigators are

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Déjà Vu All Over Again: Political Signs in Community Associations

As reported in the Press of Atlantic City, Anita Carbonara has two signs in support of President Barack Obama in the windows of her Barnegat Township home. The Board of Trustees at the Heritage Point, Ms. Carbonara’s homeowners’ association, wants

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Columbia board might delay controversial homeowners legislation

The Columbia Association board might delay a request for legislation that would reclassify CA under state law, fearing that the proposal is too controversial to push through so quickly.  The legislation would reclassify CA from a homeowners association, governed by

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