“A ‘CliffsNotes’ Guide for New Condominium Board Members” (FL)

The election is over, and you have earned a coveted seat on your condominium association’s board of directors. Now what? This helpful guide will provide you with a “CliffsNotes” version of important things to remember as you embark on your journey as a director.   Read the article…………………………….

The Role of an HOA Board: Responsibilities and Best Practices

Homeowners’ Associations (HOAs) are an integral part of many residential communities. They play a pivotal role in maintaining property values, ensuring the welfare of homeowners, and fostering a sense of community. At the heart of every HOA is its board of directors, a group of elected volunteers responsible for making critical decisions and overseeing various […]

What Legal Remedies May Be Available to Condominium Associations When Criminal Conduct is Committed?

A shocking, criminal incident in Florida recently garnered national media attention when a unit owner was arrested and charged with injecting a poisonous chemical into a neighboring unit on several occasions. The liquid tested positive for the narcotics methadone and hydrocodone and caused the victim’s family members to suffer shortness of breath and eye and […]

Why Your HOA Needs a Responsibility Chart

A responsibility chart can be a valuable tool for keeping your HOA organized and making sure your members know who to contact when they need assistance. Here is an overview of what a responsibility chart is and how it can benefit your community!   Read the article………………………..

Understanding the Key Roles of Officers in a Community Association Board of Directors

Community associations play a vital role in maintaining and enhancing the quality of life in their respective communities. At the heart of every community association is its board of directors, comprised of dedicated individuals who serve in various officer roles. In this article, we will delve into the responsibilities and functions of these officers, shedding […]

Irmo homeowners want brick wall in their neighborhood fixed (SC)

An Irmo neighborhood has been in a three year battle over a partially collapsed brick wall. Upset residents have reached out to News 19 for help in reaching a solution.  Back in May of 2020, homeowners in Carmel Commons explain they came home to a giant problem: a fallen brick wall. “It’s about eight feet, […]

A Condominium Association’s Right of Entry (OH)

As lawyers representing Condominium Associations, we are often tasked with asserting a Condominium Association’s right of entry into a unit or limited common element. Reasons for the Association’s entry may vary but usually are related to performing common element repairs which must be completed within the interior of the unit, immediate repairs to a component […]

Safeguarding Association Assets in Turbulent Financial Times (OH)

As George Bailey explained to the frightened citizens of Bedford Falls trying to withdraw their savings in the film It’s a Wonderful Life, “The money’s not here. Your money’s in Joe’s house. And in the Kennedy house, and Mrs. Macklin’s house, and a hundred others.” He might not have known it, but George was describing […]

9 Important Questions to Ask Before Signing a Service Contract

A community association protects every homeowner’s interests by maintaining the community’s standards. However, for an association to operate effectively, board members, active homeowners, advisors, and even vendors must work collectively.  Read the article………………………..

Conflicts of Interest and The Boards Power to Interpret the Governing Documents

Where the governing documents or the statute place the authority to interpret the governing documents with the board, the board’s interpretation will be binding unless unreasonable. However, if a director has a conflict of interest, the director can’t be part of the decision making process or the vote and must recuse herself/himself. Read the article………………………..

A Cautionary Tale for Associations: A Condominium Association Bears a Duty to Exercise Reasonable Care for the Resident’s Safety in the Common Areas (MA)

The recent Massachusetts Superior Court decision in Field, et al. v. Highbridge Concierge, Inc., et al., 1784 CV 02486-B (Mass. Super. Ct. July 5, 2022) (Roach, J.), defines the standard of care that condominium trusts owe to unit owners and others lawfully within the common areas.     Read the article………………………..

How Your HOA Can Write the Perfect Mission Statement

So, you volunteered for the board of directors of your neighborhood’s community association or HOA. Congratulations! It can be daunting to determine priorities and next steps for the association.  Reviewing your community association’s mission statement is often a great place to start prioritizing.   Read the article………………………..

Understanding How HOA Boards Make Decisions

An association’s board of directors makes many important and necessary decisions on behalf of their community association.  Generally, the board of directors is made up of elected individuals who reside within the community. However, during the development and sale period, members are usually appointed by the developer in the early days of the association’s formation.  […]

What You Need to Know: HOAs and Legal Obligations (AZ)

Because HOAs and their Boards can exert such an influence over community members’ lives, it is important to understand what they are legally required to do and what they are prohibited from doing. And that requires understanding what HOAs even are in the first place.   Read the article………………………..

Fiduciary Duties of Directors and Officers

When a homeowner gains election or appointment as a director or officer of a corporation, they become a fiduciary for the corporation, and undertake duties to the corporation, and ultimately to the members it represents.   Read the article………………………..

What Gives an HOA Board Their Authority? (CA)

Homeowners associations are like little governments. They have an HOA board of directors that govern and oversee the association and that Board does have some powers. But where does the Board get these powers and authority to enforce their documents and rules?  Read the article………………………..

The Association’s Responsibility for Wildlife in the Community (FL)

As Floridians, we are familiar with various types of wildlife surrounding our neighborhoods. As new communities develop and expand into natural habitats throughout the state, interactions between residents and wildlife are increasingly common. Most of the time, these interactions are unproblematic, but dangerous incidents can, and do, occur.  Read the article………………………..

HOA Vs. Condo Owner Repairs: Who’s Responsible For What? (IL)

Many individuals and families in Chicago choose condo life because of the benefits of living in a community with a homeowners association. One of the main perks is knowing that a portion of the upkeep will be taken care of by the HOA. But what portion exactly? Understanding what your responsibility is as a condo […]

Who Repairs the Incidental Damages Caused by the Association? (FL)

Imagine: the association has just informed you it is set to begin a massive concrete restoration project. As part of the project, the contractor will need access to the rebar beneath the concrete slab connected to (or in legalese, “appurtenant to”) your unit’s balcony. To access the balcony slab, the contractor will have to remove […]

What is a Member at Large on an HOA Board? (CA)

Sometimes it’s confusing for volunteers to know and understand their place on the HOA board. Each board member must hold an officer position, but if you have a Board of Directors comprised of more than five individuals, you may have a position called “member at large.” The duties and position of the member at large […]

Who’s responsible for the swales and culverts in Sebastian? (FL)

Almost two decades ago, the City Council spoke about the maintenance for homeowners to keep up with the culverts and swales. I remember it very well, and now it’s becoming a bigger problem due to growth. The same topic was heard again during last Wednesday’s City Council meeting when Councilman Chris Nunn emphasized the same […]

Whose Yard is it Anyway? (CA)

For individuals residing in common interest developments, the constitutional right to free speech is not applicable. While many believe that they have a right to freely express themselves by posting signs, banners, flags, and religious symbols on their own properties, they may be surprised to learn that their homeowners and condominium associations are not bound […]

Legal Obligations Of HOAs

For the 74 million people living in more than 347,000 communities governed by homeowners associations, their HOA boards may have as much or more of an impact on their daily lives than their state, county, or local governments.   Read the entire article……………………………….

It’s the Manager’s Fault…Or Is It? (FL)

Few professions have more demands placed upon them than that of the Florida licensed community association manager (CAM). Depending on whom you ask, the CAM is the organizer, rules enforcer, keeper of secrets (meaning confidential and statutorily protected information not limited to the medical record of owners and attorney-client privileged information), best friend, the “bad […]

What Do They Do? A Deep Dive Into the Roles of HOA Board Officers

Every homeowners’ association (HOA) is required to have an elected board of directors that acts on a community’s behalf. Often, there’s a misconception that all board members do is measure budget performance and create and enforce rules.   Read the entire article……………………………….

The Role of the Board of Directors

A homeowners association is the cornerstone of a planned community. When run properly, it brings continuity, preserves architectural integrity, maintains common areas, protects property values, and promotes the concept of “community.” Every association should be responsible for its assets and operation in accordance with state laws and the community’s governing documents.    Read the entire article……………………………….

Playing for Keeps – What Rights and Authority Is an HOA Developer (or Successor Developer) Allowed to Keep after Turnover? (FL)

For many Homeowners’ Association (“HOA”) owners and board members, the words “turnover” and “transition” are two of the most anxiously anticipated yet mysterious terms in community association lingo. Often used interchangeably, the phrases generally refer to the period of time (or “triggering event”) in the development of the community at which the developer is required, […]

The responsibilities of HOAs to homeowners (MD)

If you live in Maryland and you are on the board of a homeowner association, you have certain responsibilities to homeowners and to the community at large. It is important to follow the association’s procedures carefully. Failing to do so or to hold all homeowners to the same standards can jeopardize an association’s ability to […]

Four things your HOA isn’t allowed to do (MD)

If you own a Maryland residence, you might be part of a homeowner’s association. Many neighborhoods form these associations to ensure that all members follow a specified set of rules. By following these rules, you get to enjoy the amenities offered by your homeowner’s association. With that said, there are times when an HOA might […]

Does a condominium HOA owe a duty of care to provide parking for visitors? (CA)

A visitor attempts to park their car at a condominium complex governed by a homeowners’ association (HOA). The complex has fewer guest parking spaces than required by a parcel-specific ordinance. Unable to find parking at the complex, the visitor parks across the street. When jaywalking across the public street to reach the HOA property, the […]

BIRD NESTS AND SOLAR PANELS | Residents working to hold HOAs accountable (CA)

In the past month residents and neighbors of communities governed by Home Owners Associations are dealing with issues related to tree cutting during nesting season and forced removal of solar panels.  The boards of HOAs are elected by the homeowners but stories of them running a bit outside the lines are common. Here are two […]

Lawsuits: What to do if an owner sues the association

Lawsuits can be costly, and they create a great deal of friction between a homeowner and the HOA board. Fortunately, few lawsuits filed against an HOA actually make it in front of a judge. This article will cover why an HOA might get sued, and what you can do if your association is hit with […]

Serving on Your Community Association’s ARC, ACC, or ARB? Take Note to Whom Your Fiduciary Duties Are Owed (NC)

Through their declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions – commonly referred to as the “declaration” for short – homeowners’ associations commonly specify an approval procedure for homeowners to follow and complete prior to making such modifications. This process is often described in declarations as “architectural review.” Examples of modifications often subject to architectural review include […]

Does a Community Association Board President Have Executive Action Authority or Unilateral Powers? (FL)

Community associations are not administered by a single director or officer of the board, instead, the affairs of such associations are administered by its board. The articles of incorporation and/or bylaws of an association most often specify the required minimum number of board members. In the condominium context, the Florida Condominium Act provides that in […]

A Quick Overview of Board Member Responsibilities

I’m often asked for a quick 5 minute summary of what board members need to know to stay out of trouble while they are serving on their board. Here is a quick overview of a board member’s responsibilities.   Read the article………………………………….

What is a Condominium Association’s Responsibility to Residents for Property Damage Claims? (NJ)

Becker focuses on legal issues impacting community associations. While we advise our clients on a broad spectrum of matters that affect their daily operations, one of the most common inquires we receive relates to a condominium association’s responsibility when property damage is reported. What should your condominium association do in this circumstance? The answer is […]

7 Crucial Items to Include in Your HOA Annual Checkup

Every new year comes with its own set of challenges. And while 2020 was particularly difficult due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021 brings hope for homeowners associations. Start the new year right by administering an HOA annual checkup.    Read the article…………………………………………