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Legal & Legislative News Archives

/ Owner - July 6, 2012
  • Homebuilders work to stop bill to give earlier control of HOAs to homeowners (ID)
    A bill aiming to give residents a say in their homeowners associations once most of the development is finished isn’t moving forward, for now.  On Thursday, Rep. Jon Weber, R-Rexburg, brought HB 657 before the House Business Committee in the hopes of giving homeowners in developments with HOAs earlier control over the boards governing their neighborhoods instead of leaving associations under total control of the developer until the entire project is completed.  Read the article…………………………….
  • Proposed Legislation Would Reduce Percentage Required For Declaration Amendments (MD)
    Proposed legislation pending in the Maryland General Assembly would reduce the percentage of approval votes required to amend a condominium declaration from 80 percent to 66 2/3 percent.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Colorado lawmakers weigh rules to spur more building without stripping homeowner protections
    Construction-defect law in Colorado has been the subject of bruising battles in the Capitol for more than a decade. After taking a breather from the last round in 2017, lawmakers are again juggling consumer protection and rules that some worry will stifle much-needed building.   Read the article…………………………….
  • House Bill 59 – Providing Copies of the Docs (FL)
    So The Florida Legislature is only in session for another four days. Over the next few weeks we want to educate you about the bills that passed both The Florida House and The Florida Senate. So here we go……..  Let’s start with an amendment to Florida Statute 720.303.      Read the article…………………………….
  • Corporate Transparency Act Found Unconstitutional
    In the case titled, The National Small Business United, b/b/a the National Small Business Association, et al v. Janet Yellen, in her official capacity as Secretary of the Treasury, et al., Case No. 5:22-cv-1448-LCB, United States, District Court, Northern District of Alabama, Northeastern Division entered on March 1, 2024, the court found the CTA to be unconstitutional.    Read the article…………………………….
  • Breaking News: Federal Court Ruled Corporate Transparency Act Unconstitutional – Beneficial Ownership Information Reporting on Hold
    In a surprise decision Friday night, a federal district court ruled that the Corporate Transparency Act (“CTA”) is unconstitutional, effectively placing the Beneficial Ownership Information (BOI) reporting on hold. By way of background, the CTA was enacted on January 1, 2021 as part of the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act as an attempt to prevent money laundering and tax evasion by requiring new reporting for certain companies doing business in the U.S.     Read the article…………………………….
  • Homeowner Associations: Attorney’s Fees Are Not Fiduciary Duty Breach Tort Damages And $1.328 Million Fee Award Against Individual Directors Under Civil Code Section 5975 Reversed As A Matter Of Law. (CA)
    In Colyear v. Rolling Hills Community Assn. of Rancho Palos Verdes, Case No. B308382 (2d Dist., Div. 4 Mar. 1, 2024) (partially published; fee discussion not published), plaintiff homeowner won a declaratory relief action based on a dispute over tree-trimming covenants in certain recorded Declarations, with the lower court awarding plaintiff over $1.328 million in attorney’s fees  Read the article…………………………….
  • Colorado lawmakers target HOAs with more restrictions to protect homeowners from foreclosure
    Homeowners associations’ foreclosure filings on thousands of Coloradans’ houses over unpaid fines and fees have spurred fresh attempts by lawmakers to better regulate HOAs and metropolitan districts with the hope of preventing more people from losing their homes.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Governor Signed Legislation Allowing Private Entities to Regulate Activities on Public Lakes (IA)
    The governor recently signed a bill that allows the Lake Panorama homeowners association to regulate boating on the public lake, including rules about the operation of watercraft and equipment specifications, as well as allowing private buoys to be set up in the lake. The legislation was narrowly tailored for Lake Panorama, by stating that the homeowners association (called a common interest community in the legislation) must have 1,000 or more units.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Is Your Board Making These Critical Mistakes? Essential Risk Management Tips
    In a recent New York case, 72 Poplar Townhouse, LLC v Board of Managers of the 72 Poplar Street Condominium, a series of critical issues arose that have wide-reaching implications for condo, coop, and HOA boards. This case highlights the potential consequences of unclear bylaws, the importance of meticulous records, and the complex power dynamics between unit owners and boards.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Several southern Colorado leaders back bill they say would bring more condos to the state
    Colorado Springs’ mayor is one of more than two dozen mayors across the state supporting a change they say could bring more condos to Colorado.  The proposal is aimed at reducing construction lawsuits against condo builders. Right now, only two builders will are willing to build condos in Colorado, according to Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, who sponsors the legislation named ‘Right to Remedy Construction Defects.’   Read the article…………………………….
  • NJ Appellate Division Reverses Certain Radburn Regulations Impacting Community Associations
    On February 23, 2024, the Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division issued its opinion in a case involving regulations promulgated by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) – commonly referred to as the Radburn Regulations – which impose specific requirements on the election process for community associations throughout New Jersey and other areas involving community associations.    Read the article…………………………….
  • House passes ‘Condo 3.0’ reforms to strengthen safety, board accountability, enforcement (FL)
    Condominiums across Florida and the boards that oversee their maintenance and repairs could soon be held to stronger standards through legislation the House just passed.  The bill (HB 1021) cleared the chamber on a 111-0 vote after little discussion. As they did during its committee stops, lawmakers uniformly agreed the changes are much needed and long overdue.    Read the article…………………………….
  • GL Homes settles lawsuit with Valencia Sound; HOA will refund buyers charged $5,000 (FL)
    The homeowners association for Valencia Sound near Boynton Beach has refunded nearly $100,000 to recent buyers who were improperly charged a $5,140 “capital contribution fund by the HOA.”  The refunds were the result of a recent settlement of a lawsuit brought by GL Homes, which sued the HOA for charging its buyers the $5,000 when the rules, adopted by the homebuilder, barred such a fee from being levied.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Condo Column: Condo Law Legislative Update – 2024 – Part I (NH)
    This year’s slate of pending legislation includes an old, worn out retread, and some new ones. None have as yet passed and are in various committees. Proxies. In 2016 the Legislature amended the Condominium Act and added language regarding directed and undirected proxies. To refresh, a directed proxy is one where the owner who will not be attending an association meeting gives their right to speak and vote to someone by way of a written document, a proxy.   Read the ...
  • Legal battle may resume between Lake Oswego condo association and builder of new luxury penthouses (OR)
    A Lake Oswego condominium association recently asked the Clackamas County Circuit Court to reopen a civil case against the owners of a luxury complex along State Street.  The Oswego Talisman Condominium Association had initially filed a lawsuit against the owners of the future Frances condominiums, Hugh Development (and its affiliated LLC North D State), over a sewer line that the association alleges was ruptured during construction of the luxury condos next door.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Court of Appeals Resolves Dispute Between Competing Community Association Boards (WA)
    There was recently litigation to determine which of two competing boards of directors of a community association had the right to access the association’s bank accounts. One of the litigants originally served on the association’s board as an appointed director and president.    Read the article…………………………….
  • Bill To Protect Small Wyoming Home Day Cares From HOAs Moves To Senate
    The Wyoming Senate is contemplating a proposed law defining small home day cares as “residential” so that homeowners associations can’t ban them under a residential-only clause.  House Bill 126 would define home day cares with fewer than 10 kids as a residential property use.   Read the article…………………………….
  • HOA Changes for 2024 That Homeowners Should Know
    Around 30% of all homeowners in the United States live in some type of common-interest housing governed by a community or homeowners association. This can include condos, co-ops, HOA communities, timeshares or mobile home parks. That’s roughly 75.5 million people who are required to follow specific HOA rules and regulations for their state or community.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Proposal for more oversight of homeowner associations expected in April (TX)
    Deadlines for records requests, membership approval for assessment increases, and restrictions on foreclosures are among several recommended changes for homeowners’ associations up for debate come April.  The Select Committee on Homeowners’ Associations in the House of Representatives on Wednesday unanimously approved a report with recommendations and draft legislation for the upcoming short session to address a raft of concerns from homeowners vetted through a series of recent hearings.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Budget conference: After brief snub, Senate agrees to $30M for condo-hardening program (FL)
    After briefly offering nothing, Senate lawmakers have agreed to spend $30 million on a proposed pilot program to help condo owners strengthen their properties against seasonal storms.  House lawmakers proposed the nonrecurring expenditure Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Senate held out on committing anything to the program.  That changed Wednesday at 9 p.m., when the Legislature’s upper chamber concurred with the House’s earmark plan, offering the full $30 million to the My Safe Florida Condominium Pilot Program.   Read the article…………………………….
  • NC Community Association Legislative Update – February 28, 2024
    Today (Wednesday, February 28) was the fourth and final meeting of the NC House Select Committee on Homeowners’ Associations. As a reminder, this Committee was created by House Bill 311 (see NC Community Association Legislative Update – May 9, 2023) and tasked with examining planned communities and condominium associations,    Read the article…………………………….
  • Naugatuck Woman Secures $250,000 Settlement After Fall on Ice (CT)
    A 55-year-old Naugatuck woman, who injured her left ankle, back and neck when she fell on ice and snow in a condominium complex, has settled her case for $250,000. Natalia Dubrovinskaya was taking out the garbage for her boyfriend, who lived at the Hidden Brook condominiums in Naugatuck, when she slipped and fell,  Read the article…………………………….
  • Discrimination Claims within Community Associations (WA)
    A person’s home is intended to be their sanctuary from the public. As such, situations which arise that affect a person’s ability to feel safe and secure in their home are particularly harmful. This is, in part, the basis for the protections provided in the Fair Housing Act. Through recent amendments to the Fair Housing Act, these protections have expanded to make persons (or entities) liable for a third party’s discriminatory conduct that the person had the power to correct. ...
  • Key Rulings for Condominium Associations in Square Lake Hills Association v Russel Garland and Highlander Group MMC, Inc. (MI)
    On March 23, 2023, the Michigan Court of Appeals decided several important issues in favor of Michigan condominium associations. In Square Lake Hills Association v Russel Garland and Highlander Group MMC, Inc et al, unpublished opinion of the Court of Appeals, (Docket No. 360405), the Court of Appeals made the following rulings:   Read the article…………………………….
  • NC House panel okays recommendations limiting power of HOAs
    A state House panel Wednesday gave the final okay to recommendations they say would help curb abuses of power by community and homeowners’ associations in North Carolina.  “We can’t make as many changes probably as some would like to see happen, but we do have a few suggestions in the way of this committee report,” said co-chairman Rep. Steve Tyson, R-Craven. “In the short amount of time that we’ve had to do this, I think it’s a very good start.”  ...
  • Several HOA bills introduced in Idaho House
    Several Idaho legislators have recently introduced bills about homeowners associations, also known as HOAs.  Two lawmakers, Rep. Jon Weber, R-Rexburg, and Rep. Brooke Green, D-Boise, have been working on HOA issues for months. And as the Treasure Valley has grown, more and more people reside under the purview of HOAs.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Bill expanding oversight, accountability of condo boards clears final Senate committee (FL)
    Legislation to shore up Florida’s condo laws and give state regulators more power to punish unscrupulous board members is bound for the Senate floor after clearing its final committee with uniform support.  Passing the measure (SB 1178) would mark a major overhaul of state statutes governing condo oversight and management by providing for criminal penalties for records violations, kickbacks and condo board election fraud.    Read the article…………………………….
  • Deed restriction may frustrate lender’s foreclosure on real estate development (RI)
    The redeveloper of the former Memorial Hospital campus in Pawtucket could challenge a lender’s foreclosure on the property based on the alleged invalidity of the mortgage that it defaulted on, a Superior Court judge has found. Defendant Memorial Development LLC took out a $3.5 million mortgage on the property in 2022, which the original lender assigned to plaintiff Memorial Real Estate Group, LLC. The property was apparently encumbered by a deed restriction prohibiting any sale, conveyance or transfer without the ...
  • Court must provide ‘concise but clear explanation’ for reduced fee award (VA)
    A trial court’s failure to explain its reduction of attorneys’ fees awarded to the plaintiffs — who substantially prevailed in litigation against a homeowners’ association — resulted in the Virginia Court of Appeals remanding the case for reconsideration.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Hotel-Condominium Governance Litigation: Could IconBrickell Go National?
    In 2020, the Florida Third District Court of Appeal issued the IconBrickell decision that has had a profound effect on the way practitioners and developers think about the legal landscape of mixed-use properties throughout the state of Florida, particularly branded residential condominiums. In IconBrickell Condominium No. Three Association v. New Media Consulting, 310 So.3d 477 (Fla. 3d DCA 2020), the Florida appellate court held that the condominium declaration that governed the property rights of owners at the W Hotel in ...
  • Hoarding in Condominiums: When Individual Rights Clash with Community Concerns
    The recent case of Board of Managers of the 48-54 West 138th Street Condominium v. Flora Burdock highlights the complexities that arise when an individual unit owner’s behavior impacts the health, safety, and well-being of a condominium community. In this case, the condominium board sought legal intervention to address a severe hoarding situation within Ms. Burdock’s apartment.   Read the article…………………………….
  • ‘A property rights issue’: Bill prohibiting HOAs from requiring grass lawns died in committee (ID)
    Sen. Rick Just’s opening PowerPoint slide had a direct and succinct message, “I’m not coming for your lawn.”  Just, D-Boise, was presenting a bill to the Idaho Senate Commerce and Human Resources Committee that would open up more neighborhoods to alternative methods of landscaping by prohibiting homeowners’ associations from requiring grass lawns.    Read the article…………………………….
  • HOA Homefront: New Law Restricting Watering of HOA “Nonfunctional Turf” (CA)
    Dear Mr. Richardson: Can you address AB1572 which will have a huge effect financially on our HOA?  Read the Q&A………………………………..
  • State Rep Pushes Legislation to Regulate Property Management Comps, Community Association Mgmt (GA)
    Companies that manage homeowners’ associations could soon be subject to more regulations.  State Representative Dar’shun Kendrick (D-Lithonia) recently introduced House Bill 1258, legislation she says will “increase accountability for property management firm brokers and community association management brokers.”     Read the article…………………………….
  • New Legislation (CA)
    AB 572. Assessment Limitation. Beginning January 1, 2025, new associations with affordable housing are limited to assessment increases for affordable housing to 5% plus cost of living, not to exceed 10% greater than the preceding regular assessment. This does not apply to associations with 20 units or less. “Affordable housing” means a unit occupied by lower and moderate-income households.   Read the article…………………………….
  • When to File a Breach of Contract Lawsuit or How Long is Too Long? (CO)
    The Colorado Supreme Court recently issued a decision that significantly impacts common interest communities’ need to enforce contracts by filing a lawsuit or an arbitration proceeding. This decision affects the timing considerations of when such proceedings must be filed.   Read the article…………………………….
  • When Is an HOA/Condo Rental Amendment Unreasonable? (NC)
    When it comes to declaration amendments, our firm is most often asked about restrictions on rentals, whether complete or percentage bans, restrictions on short-term rentals, or limiting corporate rentals.    In a decision issued this week (February 21, 2024), the North Carolina Court of Appeals struck down a condominium rental amendment as unreasonable.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Some Colorado HOAs ban using fire-resistant building materials. This proposed law could overrule that
    A Colorado Senate committee on Tuesday advanced legislation that would block homeowners’ association rules that prevent residents from using fire-resistant building materials, a change that firefighters and insurance experts say would give communities more options to harden properties against climate-fueled wildfires.    Read the article…………………………….
  • House amends estoppel certificate measure in a compromise with HOAs (FL)
    The House Judiciary Committee with a unanimous vote amended legislation that would prohibit homeowner or community associations from charging homeowners and buyers for estoppel certificates to alleviate concerns among industry leaders.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Court sides with homeowners in NC ski country who want short-term rentals
    After a homeowners association in the North Carolina High Country tried to block short-term rentals during ski season, a court has ruled against the HOA.   Read the article…………………………….
  • When to File a Breach of Contract Lawsuit or How Long is Too Long? (CO)
    The Colorado Supreme Court recently issued a decision that significantly impacts common interest communities’ need to enforce contracts by filing a lawsuit or an arbitration proceeding. This decision affects the timing considerations of when such proceedings must be filed.    Read the article…………………………….
  • Idaho Supreme Court sides with developer in Teton County case
    The case arises from a dispute regarding a condominium development and dates back to 1995. That’s when a lot in Driggs was approved for Planned Unit Development with up to 16 standalone condominiums.  In 1995, TCR’s lot owned by TCR, LLC, the developer of Teton Creek Resor, was approved for Planned Unit Development with 16 standalone condominiums. However, a dispute arose in 2020 when county officials refused to record the plat, claiming TCR hadn’t submitted necessary documents.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Bill that would provide $175,000 to stormproof condos nears finish line (FL)
    Condominium associations near Florida’ coast will get access to $175,000 per association in state funds for storm-proofing projects under a House bill that’s nearing the finish line. The Senate version of the bill does not have a cap.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Lawmakers advance bill that would void HOA rules that block wildfire-hardening (CO)
    A Colorado Senate committee on Tuesday advanced legislation that would block homeowners’ association rules that prevent residents from using fire-resistant building materials, a change that firefighters and insurance experts say would give communities more options to harden properties against climate-fueled wildfires.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Discrimination in HOAs: A Claim That Must Be Taken Seriously
    Attorneys have seen an uptick in cases of alleged discrimiation in HOAs and condo associations. Complaints can become costly and stressful for an association.    Read the article…………………………….
  • Homeowner association regulations proposal expected in short session (NC)
    Proposed changes to how North Carolina regulates homeowners’ associations expected to be introduced as a bill in the short session was reviewed by lawmakers on Tuesday.  Staff with the General Assembly’s Legislative Analysis Division outlined five recommendations from the Select Committee on Homeowners’ Associations in the House of Representatives following several hearings on a variety of complaints from the public.    Read the article…………………………….
  • Threat of Litigation Not a Good Idea when it comes to Housing Discrimination Complaints (NY)
    New York’s highest court decided that the threat of litigation may support a retaliation claim under the New York State Human Rights Law. The Human Rights Law prohibits retaliation against those who make discrimination complaints or engage in other protected activity. The New York Court of Appeals definitively decided that the threat of litigation itself may constitute the requisite adverse action under the Human Rights Law to support a retaliation claim.   Read the article…………………………….
  • Wicker bill removes roadblocks for amateur radio operators
    According to a summary of the bill, the legislation would prohibit homeowner association rules that prevent or ban amateur radio antennas on residential properties, clarify the approval process for installing amateur radio antennas, and give amateur radio operators a private right of action.  Read the article…………………………….
  • Kansas homeowners urge lawmakers to ban ‘punitive’ rooftop solar restrictions
    Alan Bauman would put solar panels on his Prairie Village home if he could. He’d like to benefit from the savings on his energy bill and have more security when his electric utility suffers power outages.  But his homeowners association restricts his and neighbors’ ability to install solar power.   Read the article…………………………….
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