Legislation Articles

Back to homepage
  • New Year, New Laws for California Community Associations/CIDs-2018 December 11, 2017 Recent legal Developments affect community association interests in a variety of ways. In 2017, the California Court of Appeal decided several cases concerning such issues as title to common area and board member liability. These cases may be instructive to board members and managers. Meanwhile, on the legislative front, new and pending laws affect association interests in the areas of governance, business dealing, FHA certification, annual notifications and use restrictions. Though not a complete or authoritative guide, we hope this article (published in the Winter 2017 Volume 10, Issue 1 of the Communicator, Community Association Institute/Bay Area/Central California Chapter’s news magazine) can be a useful resource for the most relevant legal updates this year. Follow this link or click here to download the article.   Read the article………………..
  • Michigan Senate Bill 663: Michigan cracks down on fake emotional support pets December 11, 2017 On November 28, 2017, Senator Peter MacGregor introduced Senate Bill 663, which would criminalize a fake request for an emotional support pet or service animal. Requests for emotional support pets and service animals continue to increase under the Federal Fair Housing Act and the Michigan Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act, MCL 37.1101 et seq. While a legitimate request for an emotional support pet or service animal may require a reasonable accommodation, stronger penalties are need to prevent a fake request that is merely intended to avoid the plain language of condominium bylaws or restrictive covenants in Michigan.    Read the article……………….
  • State moving to ban bans on Thin Blue Line flag (OH) December 11, 2017 As a way to pay tribute to his fellow officers, retired Columbus Police Sgt. Daniel Guthrie flew the Thin Blue Line flag at his New Albany condominium.  The flag, however, violated the rules of his condo association, Rocky Ridge Condominium Complex, so he was forced to take it down.  In an effort to ensure that won’t happen again, Reps. Anne Gonzales, R-Westerville, and Tim Ginter, R-Salem, came up with a bill that would prevent landlords, mobile-home parks, condo associations and the like from restricting the display of Thin Blue Line flags.   Read the article…………….
  • Accounting changes will likely be an added expense (IL) December 9, 2017 As I noted in the Nov. 18 column, new Section 1-45(h)(i) of the Common Interest Community Association Act and new Section 18.10 of the Illinois Condominium Property Act provide that: “An association subject to this Act that consists of 100 or more units shall use generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”) in fulfilling any accounting obligation under this Act.” This new law is effective Jan. 1.  I’m not an accountant, so I reached out to Mark Cantey, owner of Cantey Associates in Wheaton, who represents associations throughout Chicago, for an explanation of what GAAP means.     Read the article………………..
  • What legislative trends can you expect to see in 2018? December 1, 2017 As legislative sessions are approaching, we have compiled a short list of issues we predict will trend in states legislatures in 2018. While the following are by no means the only issues facing community associations in the next year, we expect these five to pop up in many states and could very well impact everyone living and working in community associations.    Read the article…………….
  • Should the Condominium Property Act Allow Unit Owners to Recover Attorneys’ Fees? (IL) November 29, 2017 During the previous Illinois General Assembly legislative session, Representative Drury introduced House Bill 3755, which would have amended the Condominium Property Act (the “Act”) to allow a unit owner to recover attorneys’ fees and costs from his or her association if he or she prevailed in any litigation or arbitration proceeding, regardless of whether that unit owner was the plaintiff or defendant in such proceeding. Despite strong opposition, House Bill 3755 did pass out of the House and into the Senate, but did not go further. The support that bill received, and its relative success in moving out of the House, seems to indicate that we have not heard the last about fee-shifting in favor of unit owners.     Read the article…………….
  • HOA Homefront: What Sacramento did for (or is it to?) HOAs in 2017 (Part 2) (CA) November 23, 2017 Last week’s column addressed three bills recently passed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown and the California Assembly: Senate bill 2, Assembly bill 534 and AB 1412. Today’s column will tackle three other significant bills, SB 407, AB 634, and AB 690, which also were approved and take effect in 2018.  SB 407 created Civil Code 4515, which has the expressed intent of protecting the right of HOA members and residents to “peacefully assemble and freely communicate” regarding HOA living or “for social, political or educational purposes.”   Read the article…………….
  • HOA Homefront: What Sacramento did for (or is it to?) HOAs in 2017 (Part 2) November 18, 2017 Last week’s column addressed three bills recently passed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown and the California Assembly: Senate bill 2, Assembly bill 534 and AB 1412. Today’s column will tackle three other significant bills, SB 407, AB 634, and AB 690, which also were approved and take effect in 2018.   SB 407 created Civil Code 4515, which has the expressed intent of protecting the right of HOA members and residents to “peacefully assemble and freely communicate” regarding HOA living or “for social, political or educational purposes.”    Read the article…………….
  • What’s New in Washington, D.C. November 16, 2017 The news continues to keep us up-to-date on what’s happening here in Washington, D.C.; including scandals, Tweets, and the latest contention between the Democrats and Republicans. The one popular issue making headlines that directly impacts the community association housing model is Tax Reform. Key issues like proposed changes to the mortgage interest deduction, the local property tax deduction, issues with implications on and small business. CAI’s government affairs team is exploring the impacts of these tax reform proposals on residents living in common interest communities and will use the Government Affairs Blog to update members regularly.   Read the article……………
  • New Legal Remedies Against Director Conflicts of Interest for Associations (FL) November 14, 2017 In the pursuit of association fraud and embezzlement, one of the most important aspects of the major legislation that was adopted earlier this year is the law’s effort to curb conflicts of interest by association board members and officers.  The new law provides that presumptions of conflicts of interest exist in the following circumstances:    Read the article………………
  • HOA Homefront: What Sacramento did for HOAs in 2017 – Part 1 November 11, 2017 The California Legislature was quite active this year in creating laws affecting homeowners associations, as six bills take effect in 2018. This column will address three and next week’s column will address the other three.    Read the article……………..
  • Proposed DPH Pest Control Requirements Are Confusing, Costly and Burdensome for Condos (MA) November 7, 2017 Anyone who tracks legislation and regulations affecting condominiums has to wonder if lawmakers and regulators understand what condos are and how they operate. Proposed revisions to the state Sanitary Code demonstrate once again that they do not.  The Department of Public Health wants to update the existing code ? unquestionably a reasonable undertaking, both necessary and long overdue. But provisions aimed at controlling pests in multi-family housing would cause confusion in the condominium industry and impose costly and unnecessary administrative burdens on condo associations.   Read the article……………….
  • Flap over Woodbury Junction homeowners association dues (NY) November 5, 2017 Frustrated residents of the partly built Woodbury Junction development now have a new state law to address one longstanding concern: their inability to get either the original developer or the one who took over the 451-home project to detail where their homeowners association dues had gone.  Under a bill sponsored by their assemblyman, Woodbury Democrat James Skoufis, and signed last month by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, homeowners associations must now turn over invoices, bank statements and other financial records involving dues when a resident asks for them.   Read the article…………..
  • 2018 Maryland Legislative Hot Topics November 5, 2017 2018 marks the last Maryland legislative session before statewide elections in November. With the entire General Assembly and Governor up for election, the legislature is expected to focus on many bills previously considered but not enacted.  For community associations, the hot topics include increasing the condominium insurance deductible paid by unit owners where damage originates in a unit; licensing community association managers; and statewide registration of condominiums, homeowner associations, and housing co-operatives. Legislation to require periodic reserve studies to estimate the cost of replacing and repairing common property may also get another look.     Read the article…………….
  • Short Term Rentals Coming Soon to Montgomery County, Maryland November 1, 2017 Short term rentals will soon be allowed in all residential areas of Montgomery County, Maryland. A home rented on a daily or weekly basis is often referred to as an AirBnb–which is the dominant online booking web site for short term rentals.  Under current law, no residential rentals are permitted in Montgomery County for less than 30 days. Faced with widespread illegal daily and weekly rentals, the County Council passed legislation in October, 2017 to allow these rentals where the property is the primary residence of the owner or owner-authorized resident of the rental property. However, condominiums, homeowner associations and housing cooperatives will still be allowed to ban or restrict short term rentals.    Read the article……………….
  • HOA law loophole leaves some homeowners powerless (TX) October 30, 2017 The builder of both neighborhoods, Lennar, controls the HOAs. Both developments have been under construction since 2006. That’s because the way state law is currently written, there is no limit to “the development period,” which is essentially how long a developer or builder can control an HOA.  KXAN Investigator Brian Collister caught up with the Lennar representative outside a recent HOA meeting in Bradshaw Crossing to ask why they haven’t handed over control to the homeowners.    Read the article……………
  • Is your Resale Certificate up-to-date? (VA) October 27, 2017 If there is one thing we seem to be able to count on from the Virginia General Assembly, its frequent amendments to the statutes regarding association resale certificates and 2017 was no exception.  Under the “News You Can Use” section of this site, Jeanne Lauer explained the new legislation regarding “For Sale” signs in condominium and homeowners associations which became effective July 1, 2017. That posting is a must read for anyone preparing resale certificates for an association because “For Sale” sign regulations in your Declaration (and/or Bylaws for a condominium) must be disclosed in association resale certificates. Unless you are familiar with the new “For Sale” sign statute regarding limitations on an association’s ability to regulate signs, you could easily disclosure incorrect information to prospective purchasers and that’s no way to get off to a good start with new ...
  • New Jersey Court: Continuous Trigger Ends When Nature of Damage Is Known October 27, 2017 Last week, the New Jersey Appellate Division issued a decision that may have a significant impact on insurance coverage for progressive property damage claims in the state. In Air Master & Cooling, Inc. v. Selective Ins. Co. of Am., No. A-5415-15T3, 2017 WL 4507547 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. Oct. 10, 2017), the court first confirmed that a “continuous trigger” applies to third-party construction defect claims. A continuous trigger requires multiple successive insurers on the risk from the date of exposure through manifestation to cover a loss.     Read the article…………
  • Short-Term Rentals in Flagler County: The View From Home Owners’ Associations (FL) October 22, 2017 Two weeks ago the Florida Senate Community Affairs Committee met in workshop to discuss short-term rentals across Florida, an issue that has bedeviled Flagler County since county government in 2013 and 2014 successfully led the way to a new state law that allows for a measure of local vacation-rental regulations, reversing a 2011 law that had abrogated those rights to the state. Ever since, the short-term rental industry has been pushing hard to reverse or amend the 2014 law.    Read the article……………..
  • Creating a state homeowners association czar is a bad idea (SC) October 18, 2017 Last May, as the 2017 legislative session in Columbia drew to a close, a bill that had been passed by the House, designated H. 3886 and titled the South Carolina Homeowners Association Act, was put on the Senate calendar for consideration.  After reviewing the bill and discussing it with several managers for community associations in my senate district, I exercised my right to block the bill, thus carrying it over until the 2018 session. Since the session will reconvene in January, I want to explain my objections, both to inform my constituents and to encourage the bill’s proponents to accept my amendments.     Read the article……………..
  • Unit owners can’t use records for solicitations (IL) October 17, 2017 Q. I recently read about a change in Section 19 of the Condominium Property Act concerning books and records of an association. I understand owners will no longer have to state a “proper purpose” to examine and inspect certain books and records of the association. Can you describe what books and records requests this will impact?      Read the Q&A…………….
  • Electronic Signatures Can Now Be Used to Amend Restrictive Covenants (MI) October 17, 2017 The legislative history of MCL 450.835a demonstrates that Michigan House Bill 5591 (2016) was originally introduced to deal with an extremely large Michigan Homeowners Association that was having difficultly amending its documents. The Lakes of North Association in Northern Michigan that had approximately 4,700 members and was composed of 8,028 lots. The restrictive covenants required 2/3 of the owners to physically sign an amendment to a restrictive covenant in order for it to be effective. Given the practical problems in gathering physical signatures of owners of more than 5,351 lots, the legislature agreed to allow electronic signatures to be attached to an amendment as part of the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act, MCL 450.831, et seq..     Read the article……………..
  • AB 634 Signed! Reduced HOA Control of Solar Energy System Installations (CA) October 16, 2017 The Governor has signed AB 634 into law changing HOA control over solar energy system (“Solar”) installations. HOAs may no longer adopt policies and guidelines that prohibit Solar installations on common area roofs protecting HOA property and homes from damage and members are stripped of the right to protect common area property by membership vote. HOA’s must conform to a statewide, one-size-fits-all Solar policy summarized here.    Read the article………………
  • Ham Radio Legislative Activity In The U.S. Senate October 16, 2017 Last week, The U.S. Senate Commerce Committee was scheduled to mark-up S 1534 The Amateur Radio Parity Act (a.k.a. HAM radio legislation) when it was withdrawn from the docket. Florida Senator Bill Nelson and Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz cosponsored and filed an amendment with their fellow Senators on the Senate Commerce Committee. The original Senate bill sponsors, Connecticut Senator Blumenthal and Missouri Senator Roger Wicker are said to have disliked the amendment to their bill, so the bill was pulled from the docket and will be rescheduled for November.    Read the article…………….
  • Can Your Community Association Stop Bullying and Harassment in Their Tracks? (FL) October 16, 2017 Bullying in any form cannot be condoned either in schools, workplaces or communities. While a newly filed bill by Rep. Emily Slosberg (HB 123) has the laudable goal of protecting Florida’s senior citizens from being bullied, just how feasible is it in a community association context? From some of the board and membership meetings I’ve attended over the years, it is not at all easy to spot who is the bully and who is the bullied and the reality is that sometimes the bully becomes the bullied and vice versa.  HB 123, if passed, would create a new law known as the “Stand Up for Seniors Act.” The law appears to apply only to “55 and over” communities in Florida.    Read the article…………

Legislation Article Archives