CAI Law Reporter

Cloverdale is a member of Community Association Institute (CAI), a National organization of homeowner associations across the United States. Our membership renewal began August 2012.

The following court cases are provided by CAI for your continued reference & information. Remember, court cases set precedents that are frequently cited by attorneys.

Select other cases by choosing an individual year from the CAI Law Reporter Archive

Read More links might open in a new window
DISCLAIMER: the official record(s) shall prevail.


Lack of Written Architectural Guidelines Creates Enforcement Problem

Castlewood Property Owners Association, Inc. v. Guerra-Danko, Case No. 45A03-1508-PL-1105 (Ind. Ct. App. May 13, 2016)

Architectural Control: The Indiana Court of Appeals held that an association’s denial of an owner’s request to install vinyl siding was unreasonable because there was no written prohibition on vinyl siding and no evidence that it was not harmonious with the surrounding homes or would devalue them. [Read more]

Association’s Attempt to Evade Foreclosure’s Effect Found Illegal

Walworth State Bank v. Abbey Springs Condominium Association, Inc., Case No. 2014AP940, 2016 WI 30 (Wis. Apr. 29, 2016)

Assessments: The Supreme Court of Wisconsin held that an association’s policy of preventing the purchaser of a foreclosed unit from using the recreational facilities until the former owner’s debt was paid violated established foreclosure law. [Read more]

Association’s Foreclosure Sale Must Be Commercially Reasonable

The Neighborhood Association, Inc. v. Limberger, Case No. SC 19509 (Conn. Apr. 26, 2016)

Association Operations: The Supreme Court of Connecticut ruled that a board-adopted collection and foreclosure policy was a rule requiring owner notice and comment under the Connecticut Common Interest Ownership Act. [Read more]

Association Prevails Even Though Much of Its Case Disallowed

Almanor Lakeside Villas Owners Association v. Carson, Case No. H041030 (Cal. Ct. App. Apr. 19, 2016)

Attorney’s Fees: The California Court of Appeal upheld a very large attorney’s fees award to an association as the prevailing party in a suit to collect fines, even though most of the fines were disallowed, because the judgment cemented the association’s rulemaking authority. [Read more]

Common Property Sold at Tax Sale Still Bound by Declaration

Benoit v. Cerasaro, Case No. 2015-057 (N.H. Apr. 19, 2016)

Covenants Enforcement: The New Hampshire Supreme Court held that selling common property at a tax sale did not extinguish the covenants and easements on that property; therefore, requirements in the declaration applied to the purchaser. [Read more]

Association’s Failure to Grant an Exception to No-Pets Rule Proves Costly

Castillo Condominium Association v. U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Dev., Case Nos. 14-2139, 15-1223 (1st Cir. May 2, 2016)

Federal Law and Legislation: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit upheld the HUD Secretary’s determination that an association discriminated against a disabled resident by refusing to grant an exception to its no-pets rule for an emotional support animal. [Read more]

Association Acquired Vested Right to Install Subdivision Gates

The Estates Homeowners Association (Grouse Mountain), Inc. v. Whitefish, Case No. DA 15-0486, 2016 MT 87N (Mont. Apr. 12, 2016)

Municipal Relations: The Supreme Court of Montana held that when a city approved a subdivision plat entitling the association to install gates on its private roads, the association acquired a vested right that the city could not later take away by prohibiting gated roads. [Read more]

Super-priority Lien Does Not Include Foreclosure or Collection Costs

Horizons at Seven Hills Homeowners Association v. Ikon Holdings, LLC, Case No. 63178 (Nev. Apr. 28, 2016)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Nevada Supreme Court interpreted the Nevada Common Interest Ownership Act as excluding foreclosure and collection costs from an association’s super-priority lien. [Read more]

Massachusetts Law Allows Multiple Super-Priority Condominium Liens

Drummer Boy Homes Association, Inc. v. Britton, Case No. SJC-11969, 474 Mass. 17 (Mass. Mar. 29, 2016)

Assessments:The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts held that Massachusetts’ condominium statutes allow a condominium association to establish multiple super-liens on a unit by filing successive legal actions to collect unpaid assessments. [Read more]

Association’s Foreclosure Sale Must Be Commercially Reasonable

Zyzzx 2 v. Dizon, Case No. 2:13-CV-1307 JCM (PAL) (D. Nev. Mar. 25, 2016)

Assessments:The U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada voided an association’s foreclosure sale because the association inaccurately advertised the association’s lien as being subordinate to the mortgage, resulting in an extremely low sales price. [Read more]

Foreclosing Mortgagee Not Liable for Pre-Foreclosure Collection Costs

Catalina West Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Federal National Mortgage Association, Case No. 3D15-271 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Mar. 30, 2016)

Assessments: The Florida Court of Appeal held that an association was not entitled to charge a mortgagee who acquired a unit through foreclosure for pre-foreclosure interest, attorney’s fees or collection costs. [Read more]

Bankruptcy Discharge Does Not Extinguish Owner’s Personal Liability for Assessments

In re: Montalvo, Case No. 6:10-bk-08338-KSJ, Chapter 13 (Bankr. M.D. Fla. Feb. 25, 2016)

Assessments: The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Florida held that, following a Chapter 13 bankruptcy discharge, a unit owner remained personally liable for condominium assessments until title was transferred. [Read more]

Bankruptcy Discharge Extinguishes Owner’s Personal Liability for Assessments

In re: Ramirez, Case No. 08-29681-JKO, Chapter 13 (Bankr. S.D. Fla. Mar. 5, 2016)

Assessments: The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida held that an owner’s personal liability for condominium assessments was extinguished by a Chapter 13 bankruptcy discharge, but the association could still pursue an assessment lien on the unit. [Read more]

Amenity Maintenance Covenant Stripped from Bankrupt Golf Club

In re: MidSouth Golf, LLC, Case No. 13-07906-8-SWH, Chapter 11 (Bankr. E.D. N.C. Mar. 29, 2016)

Covenants Enforcement: Following the North Carolina Court of Appeals’ ruling that a recreational covenant obligating lot owners to pay amenity fees to a private golf club was an unenforceable personal covenant, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina ruled that the club property could be sold free and clear of a related amenity maintenance covenant. [Read more]

Unincorporated Association Must Have Organizational Structure and Governance Procedures

Halme v. Walsh, Case No. 47129-9-II (Wash. Ct. App. Mar. 8, 2016)

Documents: The Washington Court of Appeals held that neighborhood covenants had to contemplate a formal organization separate from the owners for an unincorporated association to exist for purposes of the Washington Homeowners Association Act. [Read more]

Chickens May Be Kept as Pets

Eldorado Community Improvement Association, Inc. v. Billings, Case No. 33,850 (N.M. Ct. App. Mar. 28, 2016)

Use Restrictions: The New Mexico Court of Appeals held that chickens kept for pleasure could qualify as recognized household pets under an exception to a subdivision’s prohibition on animals, birds and poultry. [Read more]

Developer Can’t Waive Reserve Funding

Meritage Homes of Florida, Inc. v. Lake Roberts Landing Homeowners, Case Nos. 5D14-2019, 5D14-4463 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Mar. 4, 2016)

Assessments: The Florida District Court of Appeal held that a developer could not vote to waive reserve funding under the Florida Homeowners’ Association Act while it still controlled the association’s board. [Read more]

Association Must Seek Deficiency Judgment After Foreclosure to Prevent Double Recovery

Franchas Holdings, LLC v. Dameron, 2016-Ohio-878, Case No. CA2015-09-073 (Ohio Ct. App. Mar. 7, 2016)

Assessments: Applying Florida collection law, the Ohio Court of Appeals held that a creditor is not entitled to double recovery by retaining the proceeds from a property foreclosure lien and a monetary judgment for the full lien amount. [Read more]

Association Could Not Unilaterally Terminate Parking Agreement

Sewall-Marshal Condominium Association v. 131 Sewall Avenue Condominium Association, 89 Mass. App. Ct. 130, 46 N.E.3d 96 (Mass. App. Ct. Mar. 1, 2016)

Contracts: The Appeals Court of Massachusetts upheld a shared parking agreement that granted parking rights in one condominium to an adjacent condominium. [Read more]

Isolated Violations Do Not Mean Covenants Are Abandoned

Wimer v. Cook, 2016 WY 29, Case No. S-15-0155 (Wyo. Mar. 3, 2016)

Covenants Enforcement: The Wyoming Supreme Court held that a few temporary declaration violations did not operate as a radical and permanent change to the community as to constitute abandonment of the declaration. [Read more]

Amendment Invalid Due to Improper Certification

Tvardek v. Powhatan Village Homeowners Association, Inc., Record No. 150456 (Va. Feb. 12, 2016)

Documents: The Virginia Supreme Court held that the association president’s certification that the declaration amendment was approved by the requisite majority was insufficient to meet the Virginia Property Owners’ Association Act’s certification requirements. [Read more]

Association Can’t Charge for Easements Over Common Area Roads

Miller Lakes Community Services Association, Inc. v. Schmitt, 2016-Ohio-339, Case No. 15AP0010 (Ohio Ct. App. Ct. Feb. 1, 2016)

Documents: The Ohio Court of Appeals held that property owners outside an association’s jurisdiction with easements over the association’s private roads did not have to contribute to the road maintenance costs because the declaration obligated the association to maintain the road and because the easements did not impose reciprocal obligations on the owners. [Read more]

Board Cannot Impose Leasing Cap

Stobe v. 842-848 West Bradley Place Condominium Association, Case No. 1-14-1427 (Ill. App. Ct. Feb. 3, 2016)

Powers of the Association: The Appellate Court of Illinois held that, because a condominium declaration contained leasing restrictions, the board lacked authority to adopt additional leasing restrictions through its general rulemaking authority. [Read more]

Board Entitled to Rely on Manager’s Representations

Falini v. Brinton Square Condominium Association, Case No. 676 C.D. 2015 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Feb. 1, 2016)

Risks and Liabilities: The Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania held that an association’s board was not guilty of gross negligence or willfully violating the Pennsylvania Uniform Condominium Act by relying on its manager’s advice, even though the manager was wrong. [Read more]

Association’s Lien Canceled by Owner’s Bankruptcy

In re: Sligh, 542 B.R. 723 (Bankr. E.D. Pa. Dec. 3, 2015)

Assessments: The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania held that the Pennsylvania Uniform Condominium Act did not grant super-lien status to an association’s lien since the unit had not been foreclosed. [Read more]

Interior Alteration Violated Prohibition Against Second Story

Pinnacle Peak Ranchos Property Owners Association v. Ramioulle, Case No. 1 CA-CV 14-0409 (Ariz. Ct. App. Dec. 10, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement: The Arizona Court of Appeals held that an association had the authority to inspect home interiors to ensure compliance with the declaration. [Read more]

Leasing Restriction Does Not Prohibit Roommates

Boston Redevelopment Authority v. Pham, Case No. 14-P-1734 (Mass. App. Ct. Nov. 19, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement: The Appeals Court of Massachusetts held that whether condominium documents required consent for a roommate was, at best, ambiguous, and the ambiguity should not be construed against the owner. [Read more]

New Restrictions Invalid without Unanimous Consent

Conlin v. Upton, Case No. 322458 (Mich. Ct. App. Nov. 24, 2015)

Developmental Rights: The Michigan Court of Appeals held that an association had no authority to impose new property restrictions without the consent of all owners. [Read more]

Failing to Pay Assessments Does Not Terminate Developer’s Rights

Litchfield Plantation Association, Inc. v. Litchfield Plantation Company, Inc., Case No. 2015-UP-532 (S.C. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015)

Developmental Rights/Developer Liability: The South Carolina Court of Appeals held that a developer’s failure to pay the amounts due to an association caused the developer’s voting rights only to be suspended, not permanently terminated. [Read more]

Insurer is Not Relieved of Liability by Settlement Agreement

Brownstone Homes Condominium Association v. Brownstone Forest Heights, LLC, 358 Ore. 223 (Or. Nov. 19, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The Oregon Supreme Court overturned precedent by holding that to obtain a complete release of liability in a settlement agreement requires more than a covenant by the plaintiff not to execute a judgment. [Read more]

Association Lien Foreclosure Does Not Extinguish Second Association Lien

Southern Highlands Community Association v. San Florentine Avenue Trust, Case No. 66177 (Nev. Jan. 14, 2016)

Assessments: The Nevada Supreme Court held that, when one association’s lien is foreclosed, a second association with an equal priority lien is entitled to share in the foreclosure proceeds. [Read more]

Condominium Act Prevails Over Bylaws Lien Provisions

The Ventana Owners Association, Inc. v. Ventana KC, LLC, Case No. ED102290 (Mo. Ct. App. Dec. 15, 2015)

Assessments: The Missouri Court of Appeals held that a bylaws provision extinguishing an association’s lien in the event of foreclosure was in direct conflict with the Missouri Uniform Condominium Act’s lien priority provisions and must be stricken from the bylaws. [Read more]

Association Lien Foreclosure Extinguishes Mortgage

Twenty Eleven, LLC v. Botelho, Case No. 2014-10-Appeal (R.I. Dec. 4, 2015)

Assessments: The Rhode Island Supreme Court held that foreclosure of a condominium association’s super-priority lien extinguishes a first mortgage, subject to the first mortgagee’s right to redeem the property for a statutory period. [Read more]

Volunteer Delegates Not Qualified to Vote

Murphy v. Anaheim Hills Planned Community Association, Case Nos. G050817, G050912 (Cal. Ct. App. Jan. 14, 2016)

Association Operations: The California Court of Appeal held that a master association election was void since a quorum of voting delegates properly elected by sub-association members was not present. [Read more]

Business Judgment Rule Does Not Protect Against Bylaws Violations

Fisher v. Shipyard Village Council of Co-Owners, Inc., Opinion No. 27603 (S.C. Jan. 27, 2016)

Association Powers: The South Carolina Supreme Court held that each board action must be evaluated individually to determine whether the business judgment rule applied to that action, and the business judgment rule did not protect the board for its bylaws violations. [Read more]

Owner Given Choice in Selecting Arbitrators

Ruiz v. Millennium Square Residential Association, Case No. 15-1014 (D.DC. Jan. 13, 2016)

Documents: The U.S. District Court for D.C. held that an arbitrator-selection process that precluded an owner’s involvement was unconscionable, but it could be severed and did not render the entire mandatory arbitration clause unenforceable. [Read more]

Dissolved Declarant Cannot Assign Rights

Landover Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Sanders, Case No. COA14-1337 (N.C. Ct. App. Dec. 15, 2015)

Documents/Developer Liability: The North Carolina Court of Appeals held that an assignment of declarant rights executed years after the declarant was dissolved was invalid. [Read more]

Golf Course Use Restriction Upheld

Save Calusa Trust v. St. Andrews Holdings, Ltd., Case Nos. 3D14-2682, 3D14-2690 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Jan. 13, 2016)

Use Restrictions/Covenants Enforcement: The Florida Court of Appeal held that a restrictive covenant required as part of zoning approval was not subject to Florida’s Marketable Record Title Act. [Read more]

Declaration Does Not Create Lien

Settlers Walk Home Owners Association v. Phoenix Settlers Walk, Inc., 2015-Ohio-4821, Case Nos. CA2014-09-116, CA2014-09-117, CA2014-09-118 (Ohio Ct. App. Nov. 23, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The Ohio Court of Appeals held that recording a declaration does not create a perfected, enforceable lien that binds successive owners. [Read more]

Policy Exclusions Preclude Insurance Coverage for Litigation

The One James Plaza Condominium Association, Inc. v. RSUI Group, Inc., Case No. 15-294 (D.C.N.J. Dec. 2, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey found that an insurance policy’s specific litigation exclusion precluded coverage for a second lawsuit against the association involving the same types of claims already litigated. [Read more]

Each Prevailing Party Is Entitled to Attorney’s Fees

Environ Towers I Condominium Association, Inc. v. Hokenstrom, No. 4D14-3376, 40 Fla. Weekly D 2586 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Nov. 18, 2015)

Attorney’s Fees: The Florida Court of Appeal held that there could be more than one prevailing party in litigation involving distinct issues. [Read more]

Attorney’s Fees Likely Excessive

Stewart Beach Condominium Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Gili N Prop Investments, LLC, No. 01-15-00169-CV (Tex. App. Nov. 17, 2015)

Attorney’s Fees: The Texas Court of Appeals upheld temporary injunctions halting foreclosures pending a determination whether the attorney’s fees that the association charged the delinquent owners were reasonable. [Read more]

Expanded Backyard Not Subject to Subdivision Restrictions

Goulechi v. Serra, No. 322489 (Mich. Ct. App. Nov. 17, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement: The Michigan Court of Appeals held that a landlocked lot adjacent to a subdivision was not subject to the subdivision restrictions, even though a subdivision lot owner purchased the lot to expand his yard. [Read more]

Acknowledgement Too Vague to Be Effective Waiver

Weinstein v. Leonard, 2015 VT 136, No. 15-075 (Vt. Nov. 13, 2015)

Documents: The Supreme Court of Vermont held that a broad acknowledgment in a declaration was ineffective as a waiver of the right to participate in municipal development review proceedings and judicial review of such proceedings. [Read more]

Declaration Amendment Cannot Extinguish Easement

Majestic Oaks Home Owners Association, Inc. v. Majestic Oaks Farms, Inc., No. 2014-CA-000492-MR (Ky. Ct. App. Nov. 20, 2015)

Powers of the Association: The Kentucky Court of Appeals held that an amendment to a subdivision declaration could not extinguish an easement without the easement holder’s consent. [Read more]

Name Change Doesn’t Eliminate Liability

The Dan J. Sheehan Company v. Fairlawn on Jones Condominium Association, Inc., No. A15A1222 (Ga. Ct. App. Nov. 17, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The Georgia Court of Appeals held that a homeowners association could not avoid liability for a judgment by forming a new association with a different name. [Read more]

New Condominium Difficult to Insure

The Windward on Lake Conway Condominium Association, Inc. v. United National Insurance Company, No. 6:14-cv-607-Orl-37KRS (M.D. Fla. Nov. 13, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida held that a vacancy requirement in a new condominium’s insurance policy did not make the policy deceptive, even though the insurer knew that some units were occupied when the policy was issued. [Read more]

Discrimination against College Students Permissible

The SPUR at Williams Brice Owners Association, Inc. v. Lalla, No. 5362 (S.C. Ct. App. Nov. 18, 2015)

Use Restrictions: The South Carolina Court of Appeals upheld a restriction prohibiting rentals to college students. [Read more]

Strict Compliance with Declaration Enforcement Procedures Required

Bixeman v. Hunter’s Run Homeowners Association of St. John, Inc., No. 45A03-1411-PL-406 (Ind. Ct. App. June 11, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement: The Indiana Court of Appeals held that a fine imposed by an association for a covenant violation was invalid if the association did not strictly comply with the declaration’s enforcement procedures, and the association committed slander of title when it failed to release the lien for the unpaid fine. [Read more]

Developer’s Right to Construct Additional Condominium Units Not Expired

Village at Bedford Woods Condominium Trust v. Century Bank & Trust Co., No. 14 MISC 483930 (AHS) (Mass. Land Ct. June 4, 2015)

Developmental Rights: The Massachusetts Land Court held that a condominium developer’s rights to construct additional phases had not expired, even though the construction period stated in the master deed had expired. [Read more]

Material Changes to Declaration Were Not Technical Amendments

Belleville v. David Cutler Group, Nos. 1512 C.D. 2014, 2014 C.D. 2014, 2081 C.D. 2014 (Pa. Commw. Ct. June 10, 2015)

Documents: The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court held that declaration amendments that created new assessment obligations were not technical corrections allowed by the Uniform Planned Community Act. [Read more]

Association Lien Wholly Unsecured

In re: Rones, Chp. 13, Case No. 14-35899 (CMG) (Bankr. D. N.J. June 11, 2015)

Federal Law and Legislation: A bankruptcy court allowed Chapter 13 debtors to bifurcate the condominium association’s lien on their unit, permitting the portion of the lien not given priority by state law to be treated as an unsecured claim. [Read more]

Self-Imposed Guidelines Do Not Establish Legal Duty

Dietch v. Carl Sandburg Village Home Owners Association, No. 1-14-0717 (Ill. App. Ct. May 29, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The Appellate Court of Illinois held that an association’s internal maintenance manual requiring staff to clear snow and ice from surrounding public sidewalks did not create a duty for the benefit of residents. [Read more]

Derivative Claim Allowed on Behalf of Unincorporated Association

McGill v. Lion Place Condominium Association, No. S-14-582 (Neb. June 12, 2015)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Nebraska Supreme Court held that a condominium unit owner could bring a derivative claim on behalf of an unincorporated association to void the illegal sale of limited common elements. [Read more]

Statute Did Not Create Joint and Several Liability for Owner

Pudlit 2 Joint Venture, LLP v. Westwood Gardens Homeowners Association, Inc., No. 4D14-1385 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. May 27, 2015)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Florida Court of Appeal determined that state law providing for joint and several liability for condominium unit owners did not override the declaration’s provisions. [Read more]

Owner Cannot Sell Portion of Reconfigured Lot as Potential Homesite

Shader v. Hampton Improvement Association, Inc., No. 75, Sept. Term, 2014 (Md. May 27, 2015)

Use Restrictions: A Maryland appeals court affirmed a ruling that a restrictive covenant prohibiting construction of more than one residence on a lot was enforceable, even though the association had waived another portion of the restriction. [Read more]

Association’s Foreclosure of Super-Priority Lien Extinguishes Mortgage

SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC v. U.S. Bank, N.A., 334 P.3d 408 (Nev. Sept. 18, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Assessments: The Nevada Supreme Court resolved a split among Nevada’s state and federal district courts concerning an association lien’s priority relative to a mortgage lien. [Read more]

Association’s Super-Priority Lien Has Priority Over First Mortgage

In re: Pack, BAP No. NV-14-1375-KuDJu (B.A.P. 9th Cir. May 18, 2015)

Federal Law and Legislation/State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Assessments: A U.S. Bankruptcy Court Appellate Panel held that a debtor could not strip off an association’s super-priority lien on over-encumbered property. [Read more]

Federal Law Does Not Protect Lender from Association’s Foreclosure of Its Super-Priority Lien

Freedom Mortgage Corporation v. Las Vegas Development Group, LLC, No. 2:14-cv-01928-JAD-NJK (D. Nev. May 19, 2015)

Federal Law and Legislation/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The U.S. District Court for Nevada determined that the Nevada Uniform Common-Interest Ownership Act does not violate or conflict with federal law. [Read more]

Developer Required to Convey Adjacent Property to Association

Foxwood Estates Homeowner’s Association, Inc. v. Foxwood Estates, LLC, No. 2013AP1103 (Wis. Ct. App. May 13, 2015)

Developer Liability: The Wisconsin Court of Appeals upheld an order requiring a subdivision developer to convey to the association a 30-acre tract that the developer had misrepresented to buyers would be common area. [Read more]

Declaration Amendment Void

Vallagio at Inverness Residential Condominium Association, Inc. v. Metropolitan Homes, Inc., No. 14CA1154 (Colo. Ct. App. May 7, 2015)

Documents: The Colorado Court of Appeals found an association’s attempt to amend its declaration to remove a mandatory arbitration clause was void since the declarant’s consent was not obtained, even though all units had been sold. [Read more]

Association Office is a Private Facility Exempt from the ADA

Pappion v. R-Ranch Property Owners Association, No. 2:13-cv-01146-TLN-CMK (E.D. Cal. May 21, 2015)

Federal Law and Legislation: The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California determined that conducting membership sales at an association office did not convert the property into a public accommodation for purposes of the Americans with Disabilities Act. [Read more]

Association Not Responsible for Insuring Condominium Interior

State Farm Fire and Casualty Company v. Chardonnay Village Condominium Association, Inc., No. 14-CA-959 C/W 14-CA-960 (La. Ct. App. May 21, 2015)

Risks and Liabilities: The Louisiana Court of Appeal determined an association had properly exempted itself from the Louisiana Condominium Act’s requirement that the association insure unit interiors. [Read more]

Strict Enforcement of Pet Restriction Upheld

The Villas in Whispering Palms v. Tempkin, No. D065232 (Cal. Ct. App. May 18, 2015)

Use Restrictions/Powers of the Association: The California Court of Appeal held that a board’s decision to strictly enforce a pet restriction after years of granting variances was reasonable and entitled to judicial deference. [Read more]

Association Did Not Breach Fiduciary Duty by Rejecting Homeowners’ Plans

McShane v. Stirling Ranch Property Owners Association, Inc., 2015 COA 48, No. 14CA0248 (Col. Ct. App. Apr. 23, 2015)

Architectural Control: The Colorado Court of Appeals upheld limitations of liability in the community documents protecting the association and found no breach of fiduciary duty for disapproving redesigned home plans. [Read more]

Board’s Authority to Fund Litigation Limited

Nottingham Village Condominium Association v. Pensom, No. 319552 (Mich. Ct. App. Mar. 24, 2015)

Assessments: The Michigan Court of Appeals held that an association board had no authority to levy an assessment to fund construction defect litigation without an owner vote. [Read more]

Owners Consented to Liens When Lots Were Conveyed

Fleet v. Webber Springs Owners Association, Inc., No. 14-0637 (W. Va. Apr. 23, 2015)

Assessments/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals upheld an association’s common law liens created under a declaration, despite West Virginia’s prohibition on common law liens. [Read more]

Owners of Damaged Units Not Entitled to Surplus Insurance Funds

The Willows Condominium Owners Association, Inc. v. Kraus, No. SD33447 (Mo. Ct. App. Mar. 23, 2015)

Association Operations: The Missouri Court of Appeals held that surplus insurance funds remaining after reconstruction of several damaged units were to be distributed to all unit owners. [Read more]

Sewage Treatment Plant Obligated to Continue Providing Service to Condominium

The Riverbend Association, Inc. v. Riverbend, LLC, No. 2130579 (Ala. Civ. App. Apr. 10, 2015)

Contracts: An Alabama appeals court held that an association had acquired an irrevocable license to use a private sewage treatment plant after paying the plant operator for nearly 40 years. [Read more]

Mortgage Company Not Responsible for Unit Until It Forecloses

Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. v. 1401 Condominium Association, No. COU4-13-002536 (Del. Ct. Comm. Pleas Mar. 24, 2015)

Federal Law and Legislation: A Delaware Court of Common Pleas held that a mortgage company was not liable for association fees since it had not foreclosed on a bankruptcy debtor’s unit, even though the bankruptcy trustee had abandoned the unit. [Read more]

Residents May Be Liable for Calling Association Manager a Thief

Neyland v. Thompson, No. 03-13-00643-CV (Tex. App. Apr. 7, 2015)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Texas Court of Appeals held that the Texas Citizens Participation Act will not protect association members from making false statements about the property manager’s performance when they failed to investigate the truth of the allegations. [Read more]

Developer Appointed Officers and Directors May Owe Fiduciary Duties to Association

Thunderbolt Harbour Phase II Condominium Association, Inc. v. Ryan, 326 Ga. App. 580, 757 S.E.2d 189 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014)

Risks and Liabilities: The Georgia Court of Appeals held that a jury must decide whether the sole officer and director of an association appointed by the developer owed a fiduciary duty to the association and its members to protect the condominium property from construction defects. [Read more]

Association Pays for Discriminating Against Children

Secretary v. Greenbrier Village Homeowners’ Association, Inc., FHEO No. 05-12-1124-8 (HUD Office of Hearings & Appeals)

Association Operations: An association charged with violating the Fair Housing Act by discriminating against children agreed to a settlement with the Department of Justice that includes civil penalties and victim payments. [Read more]

Court Hearing Is No Substitute for Association Hearing Required Before Levying Fines

Congress Street Condominium Association, Inc. v. Anderson, No. AC 35601 (Conn. App. Ct. Mar. 24, 2015)

Association Operations: The Appellate Court of Connecticut held that fines imposed by an association against an owner were improper because the association did not offer the owner a hearing before imposing the fines. [Read more]

Association Must Pay Owner’s Legal Fees in Suit Involving Invalid Use Restriction

Marino v. Clary Lakes Homeowners Association, Inc., No. A14A2236 (Ga. Ct. App. Mar. 16, 2015)

Attorneys’ Fees: The Georgia Court of Appeals declared that owners who defended themselves against an association’s attempt to enforce an invalid restriction had prevailed and were entitled to recover their attorneys’ fees. [Read more]

Private Water Agreement Is a Restrictive Covenant

Double Branches Association, Inc. v. Jones, No. A14A2069 (Ga. Ct. App. Mar. 12, 2015)

Documents: The Georgia Court of Appeals held that because a private water agreement prohibited wells within the subdivision, it constituted a covenant restricting land to certain uses. [Read more]

Association Can Levy Special Fees on Short-Term Renters

Watts v. Oak Shores Community Association, No. B240337 (Cal. Ct. App. Mar. 2, 2015)

Powers of the Association: The California Court of Appeal upheld an association’s imposition of fees on short-term renters where the fees were less than the costs to the association caused by short-term renters. [Read more]

Enclosed Terrace Is within Condominium Unit’s Boundaries

Ly v. Nguyen, No. 01-14-00077-CV (Tex. App. Mar. 19, 2015)

Powers of the Association: The Texas Court of Appeals upheld a ruling that an enclosed terrace was within a condominium unit’s boundaries and that the association owed no duty of care to the unit’s visitors with respect to potential hazards on the terrace. [Read more]

Failing to Request a Trial within Required Time Can Make Nonbinding Arbitration Binding

Alexander v. Quail Pointe II Condominium, No. 5D13-3756 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Mar. 6, 2015)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Florida Court of Appeal upheld the confirmation of a nonbinding arbitration award in favor of an association in which the opposing owner did not request a trial within the required time, even though the court order referring the case to arbitration did not comply with the required form and did not inform the owner of the applicable deadline. [Read more]

Association Member May Proceed Derivatively Against Another Member

In re Tarczynski, No. CC-14-1307-PaTaKu (B.A.P. 9th Cir. Feb. 19, 2015)

Association Operations: The U.S. Bankruptcy Panel for the Ninth Circuit ruled that an association member could pursue derivative claims on the association’s behalf against another member where the plaintiff member had alleged with particularity the defendant member’s dominance over the board and the futility of a demand that the board take action. [Read more]

Contract Valid Even Though Only One Party Initialed

Villa De Leon Condominiums, LLC v. Stewart, No-02-14-00271-CV (Tex. App. Feb. 19, 2015)

Contracts: The Texas Court of Appeals found a purchase contract’s arbitration clause enforceable against the unit buyer, even though the buyer only initialed the contract. [Read more]

Developer Lacks Power to Enforce Restrictive Covenants

Reinsmith v. Curtis, No. CA2014-05-008 (Ohio Ct. App. Feb. 17, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement/Documents: The Ohio Court of Appeals held that the rights reserved for the subdivision developer in the restrictive covenants did not include the right to pursue covenant violations. [Read more]

Developer Retains Flexibility to Convert Portion of Condominium Unit into Common Elements

Tivoli Condominium Association v. Rodin Parking Partners, L.P., No. 2180 C.D. 2013 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Jan. 30, 2015)

Developmental Rights/Documents: The Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania upheld a developer’s creation of a privately owned garage unit in a condominium, even though the final boundaries of the garage unit were not described in the declaration. [Read more]

Architectural Approval Right Limited to Structures, Not Plants

Bendo v. Silver Woods Community Association, Inc., No. 5D14-1086 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Feb. 6, 2015)

Documents/Architectural Control: The Florida Fifth District Court of Appeal determined that an association did not have the right to approve landscaping softscape. [Read more]

Association May be Liable for Not Waiving No Pet Policy

McHale v. Water’s Edge Association, Inc., No. 1:14-cv-23381-UU (S.D. Fla. Dec. 1, 2014)

Federal Law and Legislation: The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida found sufficient evidence for a disability discrimination case to proceed to trial where the board of a no-pets association granted permission for an assistance animal but repeatedly notified the resident she was in violation and subsequently implemented assistance-animal restrictions that made it difficult to keep the animal. [Read more]

Board Has Broad Power to Settle Litigation

Primo v. Garza, No-01-14-00480-CV (Tex. App. Feb. 24, 2015)

Powers of the Association: The Texas Court of Appeals upheld an association’s settlement with a unit owner where the association agreed to waive the owner’s assessments for two years. [Read more]

Association Not Entitled to Property Tax Exemption for Common Property

Marineland Gardens Community Association, Inc. v. Kosciusko County Assessor, No. 45T10-1210-TA-00065 (Ind. Tax Ct. Feb. 19, 2015)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Indiana Tax Court found that an association was not entitled to a property tax exemption because there was no evidence that the association was organized to retain and preserve land and water for their natural characteristics. [Read more]

Owner’s Storage Shed Violates Building Restrictions

Sellers v. Woodfield Property Owners Association, No. SD33312 (Mo. Ct. App. Jan. 29, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement: The Missouri Court of Appeals declined to apply a rule regulating the approval required to impose new restrictive covenants to the adoption of building restrictions which were authorized by the declaration. [Read more]

Owner Required to Remove Junk from Yard

Fan v. Summerlakes Property Owners Association, Inc., No. 29A05-1405-PL-219 (Ind. Ct. App. Jan. 27, 2015)

Covenants Enforcement: The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld an injunction against a lot owner requiring the owner to remove unsightly wooden pallets from his yard and ordered the owner to pay the association’s legal costs. [Read more]

Association Does Not Own Property It Believed Was Common Area

Le Oceanfront, Inc. v. Lands End of Emerald Isle Association, Inc., No. COA14-287 (N.C. Ct. App. Dec. 31, 2014)

Documents: The North Carolina Court of Appeals determined that a subdivision developer did not convey oceanfront property to the association. [Read more]

Virgin Islands Condominium Act Does Not Mandate Percentage Interest Vote Allocation

Frank v. Enrietto, No. 13-4537 (3rd Cir. Jan. 7, 2015)

Documents/Association Operations: The Third Circuit Court of Appeals held that the assignment of one vote per unit in an association’s bylaws did not violate the Virgin Islands Condominium Act. [Read more]

Collection Costs May Include Administrative Fees

Anselmi v. Shendell & Associates, P.A., No. 12-61599-Civ-Williams (S. Dist. Fla. Jan. 7, 2015)

Documents/Association Operations: The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida determined that including administrative fees for the association’s manager in a collection demand did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. [Read more]

All Vegetation in Community Is Subject to Height Limitation

Lightner v. Shoemaker, No. 70746-9-I (Wisc. Ct. App. Dec. 22, 2014)

Documents/Covenants Enforcement: The Washington Court of Appeals overturned a trial court’s finding that a height restriction did not apply to natural growth trees. [Read more]

Association’s Delay in Providing Corporate Records to a Member Is Reasonable

Clark v. The Ryan Park Property and Homeowners Association, 2014 WY 169 (Wy. Dec. 30, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Wyoming Supreme Court found an association’s delay in providing requested corporate records to a member reasonable and in good faith, precluding an award of attorney’s fees and costs under the Wyoming Nonprofit Corporation Act. [Read more]

Condominium Association Unable to Provide Handicap Parking Because All Spaces Were Limited Common Elements

Commonwealth of Virginia v. Windsor Plaza Condominium Association, Inc., Nos. 131806, 131817 (Va. Dec. 31, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Powers of the Association: The Virginia Supreme Court found no fair housing violation where a disabled unit owner asked the association to permit him to park in a handicap parking space that was a limited common element of another unit because the association had no right under the Virginia Condominium Act to confiscate the assigned parking of another. [Read more]

Vacant Property Not Subject to Assessment

Southbury Master Homeowners’ Association v. Southbury Land Venture, LLLP, No. 2-14-0308 (Ill. App. Ct. Dec. 23, 2014)

Assessments; Documents: An Illinois appeals court held that a builder who owned developable subdivision property was not liable for assessments to the association since lots were not yet created. [Read more]

Owner Not Responsible for Association’s Legal Fees

Pebble Court Condominium Association v. Jain, No. 1-13-3613 (Ill. App. Ct. Dec. 23, 2014)

Attorney’s Fees: An Illinois appeals court reversed an award of attorney’s fees and costs to an association because the unit owner was the prevailing party in the lawsuit. [Read more]

Owner Not Entitled to the Benefit of Typographical Error in Declaration

Waterford Harbor Master Association v. Landolt, No. 14-13-00817-CV (Tex. App. Nov. 6, 2014)

Documents/Powers of the Association: The Texas Court of Appeals upheld an association board’s decision to correct a figure in the declaration used to allocate assessments that was an obvious typographical error. [Read more]

Association May Not Assess to Fund Infrastructure Costs

Central Austin Apartments, LLC v. UP Austin Holdings, LP, No. 03-13-00080-CV (Tex. App. Dec. 8, 2014)

Powers of the Association Powers/Assessments/Developer Liability: A Texas appeals court held the association did not have the authority to levy assessments to fund initial infrastructure construction. [Read more]

Insurance Covers Equipment Posing a Fire Risk

Houston Specialty Insurance Company v. Meadows West Condo Association, No. 13-02150 (W.D. La. Dec. 9, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Louisiana federal district court held that a condominium insurance policy provided coverage for equipment repairs after the equipment was determined to be a fire risk and building officials ordered the repair. [Read more]

Failure to Disclose Adverse Facts May Constitute Misrepresentation

VRC, LLC v. RCR Vail, 12-cv-00928-RPM (D. Colo. Nov. 21, 2014)

Sales and Leases/Federal Law and Legislation: A Colorado federal district court allowed a case involving alleged Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act violations to proceed to trial where a seller induced a purchaser to agree to a purchase contract amendment without disclosing adverse developments occurring after the purchase contract was executed. [Read more]

Constitution Protects Disseminating Campaign Materials

Dublirer v. 2000 Linwood Avenue Owners, Inc., No. 069154 (N.J. Dec. 3, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Association Operations: The New Jersey Supreme Court held that a board’s ban on disseminating board election campaign materials to residents violated the New Jersey Constitution’s free speech protections. [Read more]

County Not Responsible for Assessments on Foreclosed Units

Harbor Watch Condominium Association v. Emmet County Treasurer, No. 316858 (Mich. Ct. App. Dec. 4, 2014)

Taxes and Tax Regulation/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that a county that acquired condominium units following tax lien foreclosures was not responsible for association assessments. [Read more]

Residuary Beneficiary Is Not Responsible for Assessments After Property Owner’s Death

Homestead at Mansfield Homeowners Association v. The Estate of Lois Mount, No. A-0836-13T1 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. July 8, 2014)

Assessments: A New Jersey appeals court upheld a finding that the residuary beneficiary under the will of her late mother was not responsible for assessments levied on the deceased’s home after her death. [Read more]

Association Did Not Breach Its Fiduciary Duty to Unit Owners

Davis v. Innwood Condominium Property Owners Association, Inc., No. 2013-CA-001221-MR (Ky. Ct. App. June 27, 2014)

Association Operations: A Kentucky appeals court dismissed claims by a unit owner that the association breached its fiduciary duty by failing to maintain the common elements properly due to lack of funds. [Read more]

Association Has a Duty to Investigate Common Element Damage

Fisher v. Shipyard Village Council of Co-Owners, Inc., No. 5241 (S.C. Ct. App. June 25, 2014)

Association Operations/Covenants Enforcement/Powers of the Association: A South Carolina appeals court ruled that a board had a duty to investigate the cause of damage to common elements and to pursue responsible parties, but its investigation will be examined under the business judgment rule. [Read more]

Homeowner May Not Enforce Freedom to Display the American Flag Act

Costanza v. Tchefuncte Harbour Association, Inc., No. 14-0488 Section “F,” U.S. Dist. Ct. (E.D. La. July 14, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Federal Law and Legislation: A U.S. district court dismissed a complaint against an association, holding that a homeowner could not enforce the Freedom to Display the American Flag Act of 2005 against the association. [Read more]

Association Did Not Have Standing to Sue Homeowner

Tuscany Grove Association v. Gasperoni, No. 314663 (Mich. Ct. App. June 24, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions: A Michigan appeals court ruled that, because an association failed to obtain pre-litigation approval from its members as required by its bylaws, it did not have standing to sue an owner to enforce use restrictions. [Read more]

Owners Must Remove Pool Pump House

Oakwood Meadows Homeowners Association v. Urban, No. 316193 (Mich. Ct. App. June 26, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Use restrictions: A Michigan appeals court ruled that an owner’s pool pump house must be removed because it violated a restrictive covenant that prohibited structures other than one dwelling on a lot. [Read more]

Owner Cannot Sell Reconfigured Lot as Potential Homesite

Shader v. Hampton Improvement Association, Inc., No. 845, Sept. Term, 2013 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. June 26, 2014)

Use Restrictions: A Maryland appeals court affirmed a ruling that a restrictive covenant prohibiting more than one residence on any lot shown on the original subdivision plat was enforceable by the association. [Read more]

Architects Owe Duty of Care to Future Homeowners

Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, No. S208173 (Cal. July 3, 2014)

Warranties: The California Supreme Court held that condominium development architects had a duty of care to future homeowners to protect against negligent design work, even if they did not actually build the project or exercise ultimate control over construction decisions. [Read more]

Poor Association Bookkeeping Precludes Summary Judgment for Unpaid Assessments

Hayek v. Chastain Park Condominium Association, Inc., No. A14A1134 (Ga. Ct. App. Sept. 25, 2014)

Assessments/Association Operations: A Georgia appeals court reversed a summary judgment ruling in favor of an association in a collection case because the evidence supporting the association’s claim did not prove the amount due with sufficient certainty. [Read more]

Developer Has a Fiduciary Duty to Association During Control Period

Trillium Ridge Condominium Association, Inc. v. Trillium Links & Village, LLC, No. COA14-183 (N.C. Ct. App. Sept. 16, 2014)

Developer Liability/Warranties: A North Carolina appeals court held that there were genuine issues of material fact whether a development entity and developer individuals breached their fiduciary duties to the association when they failed to disclose known construction defects, and therefore, the case must proceed to trial. [Read more]

Owner Liable for Damage Caused by Common Area Improvement

PGA West Residential Association, Inc. v. Mork, No. E054276 (Cal. Ct. App. Oct. 21, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement: A California appeals court ruled that an owner’s improvements to a common area patio that caused water damage to an adjacent unit constituted a nuisance in violation of the restrictive covenants. [Read more]

Restrictive Covenants Do Not Create Easement for Golf Use on Lots

Chewelah Golf and Country Club Association v. Williams, No. 31748-0-III (Wash. Ct. App. Oct. 23, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Architectural Control: A Washington appeals court held that a restrictive covenant did not create an express easement over lots adjacent to a golf course for golfers to use. [Read more]

Association’s Foreclosure of Its Super-Priority Lien Does Not Extinguish First Mortgage Insured by HUD

Washington & Sandhill Homeowners Association v. Bank of America, N.A., No. 2:13-cv-01845-GMN-GWF (D. Nev. Sept. 25, 2014)

Federal Laws and Legislation: The U.S. District Court for Nevada ruled that, because a mortgage was insured by HUD, Nevada state laws could not operate to undermine HUD’s ability to obtain title after foreclosure and resell the property. [Read more]

Owner Must Pay Assessments for Each Lot Purchased

Walton v. Midland Mira Vista Homeowners’ Association, Inc., No. 11-12-00214-CV (Tex. App. Sept. 18, 2014)

Powers of the Association/Assessments: A Texas appeals court ruled that a lot owner was obligated to pay assessments on two lots, even though the lots had been replatted into a single lot. [Read more]

Restrictive Covenant Prohibits Constructing a Storage Building Before Constructing a Dwelling

Berry v. Mountain Air Property Owners Association, Inc., No. 13-1324 (W. Va. Oct. 17, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Architectural Control: A West Virginia court ruled in favor of an association, finding that the subdivision’s restrictive covenants prohibited constructing a storage building before constructing a home on the lot. [Read more]

Insurer Cannot Avoid Coverage for Lawsuit Simply Because It Had No Notice of Suit

Redfish Key Villas Condominium Association, Inc. v. Amerisure Insurance Company, No. 2:13-cv-241-FtM-29CM, U.S.D. C. (M.D. Fla. Oct. 23, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities: A Florida U.S. District court ruled that material issues of disputed facts precluded summary judgment in a case where an insured contractor failed to give proper notice of a lawsuit for defective construction to the insurer. [Read more]

Association’s Decision Making Protected by Business Judgment Rule

Anklowitz v. Greenbriar at Whittingham Community Association, No. A-3606-12T1 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. Aug. 29, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement: A New Jersey appeals court upheld a ruling that when an association denied a homeowner’s application to construct a sunroom, that decision was protected by the business judgment rule, even if it was based on misinformation or faulty logic. [Read more]

Directors May Be Liable for Negligent Actions

Waltz v. Tanager Estates Homeowner’s Association, 332 P.3d 1133 (Wash. Ct. App. Aug. 19, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Architectural Control/Powers of the Association: A Washington appeals court ruled that association directors may be liable for negligence in performing their duties by failing to follow proper procedures. [Read more]

Homeowner Cannot Enforce Architectural Guidelines Against Another Homeowner

Harper v. Canyon Hills Community Association, No. G048445 (Cal. Ct. App. Aug. 19, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Architectural Control: A California appeals court ruled that neither California law nor the subdivision declaration permitted a homeowner to enforce governing documents other than the declaration against another homeowner. [Read more]

Association Cannot Enforce Plat Restrictions

Holiday Haven Members Association, Inc. v. Paulson, No. 13CA13 (Ohio Ct. App. Sept. 8, 2014)

Developmental Rights/Assessments/Architectural Control: An Ohio appeals court ruled that an association formed 20 years after the subdivision plats were recorded did not have standing to enforce the plat restrictions where the developer never assigned its rights to the association. [Read more]

Super-Priority Assessment Lien Has Priority Over First Mortgage Lien on Condominium Unit

Chase Plaza Condominium Association, Inc. v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., Nos. 13-CV-623, 13-CV-674 (D.C. Aug. 28, 2014)

Miscellaneous Association Problems: A District of Columbia appeals court ruled that the foreclosure of a condominium association assessment lien extinguished the bank’s first mortgage lien. [Read more]

Association Not Liable for Homeowners’ Injuries

Dedeaux v. Lake Caroline Owners Association, Inc., No. 2013-CA-00671-COA (Miss. Ct. App. Sept. 9, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities: A Mississippi appeals court ruled that negligence claims against a homeowners association were correctly dismissed because the homeowners failed to show the association owed a duty to protect them from a third party’s negligent acts. [Read more]

Unit Purchaser Is Liable for Pre-Foreclosure Assessments

1010 Lake Shore Association v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Company, No. 1-13-0962 (Ill. App. Ct. Aug. 12, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Assessments: An Illinois appeals court affirmed a ruling that the bank that purchased a condominium unit at a foreclosure sale was liable for pre-foreclosure assessments that the prior owner had not paid. [Read more]

Amendment Imposing New Lease Restrictions Is Invalid

Filmore LLLP v. Unit Owners Association of Centre Pointe Condominium, No. 70013-8-I (Wash. Ct. App. Sept. 2, 2014)

Use Restrictions/Sale and Lease Restrictions: A Washington appeals court upheld a ruling that a declaration amendment restricting leasing was invalid because the association did not obtain approval of 90 percent of the unit owners. [Read more]

Assessments Levied by Master Association Must Be Determined by Cost

Chappell v. Wyngate Homeowners Association, Inc., No. COA14-285 (N.C. Ct. App. Oct. 21, 2014)

Assessments: A North Carolina appeals court held that a sub-association had standing to bring a claim against a master association for levying inequitable assessments against the sub-association’s members. [Read more]

Declaration Amendment Violates Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing

The Arbors at Sugar Creek Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Jefferson Bank & Trust Company, Inc., No. ED99730 (Mo. Ct. App. Oct. 28, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Association Operations: A Missouri appeals court ruled that the action of a bank, which owned a majority of a subdivision’s lots, to amend a declaration advanced the bank’s own financial interest in a manner contrary to other owners’ interests and violated an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. [Read more]

Prohibitions Against Political Signs and Solicitations Do Not Violate Homeowners’ Constitutional Rights

Fletcher v. Diamondhead Country Club and Property Owners Association Inc., No. 1:13CV223-LG-JCG (S. Dist. Miss. Oct. 27, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions/Federal Law and Legislation: A U.S. District Court held that an association’s prohibitions against political signs and door-to-door solicitations did not violate homeowners’ First and Fourteenth Amendment rights because the association’s conduct did not constitute state action. [Read more]

Golf Course May Have to Remain if It Served as an Inducement to Lot Purchasers

Riverview Community Group v. Spencer & Livingston, No. 88575-3 (Wash. Nov. 20, 2014)

Development Rights; Covenants Enforcement: The Washington Supreme Court held that an equitable servitude may be applied to prevent a golf course from being redeveloped as residential lots if the golf course owner used the course to induce purchasers to buy lots surrounding the course. [Read more]

Condominium Association Cannot Bar Construction of Additional Units

Highridge Condominium Owners Association v. Killington/Pico Ski Resort Partners, LLC, 2014 VT 120, No. 14-066 (Vt. Nov. 14, 2014)

Development Rights; Documents: The Vermont Supreme Court held that a successor declarant retained the right to construct additional condominium units, even though more than 21 years had passed since the last construction. [Read more]

Association Has Third-Party Beneficiary Status to Enforce Development Agreement

College Woods Homeowners Association v. Trappe Borough, 96 A.3d 465 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Jul. 7, 2014)

Municipal Relations: A Pennsylvania appeals court held that an association could enforce an agreement between a developer and a town that obligated the developer to construct public improvements and dedicate them to the town, and the town would accept such improvements. [Read more]

New Jersey Bureau of Homeowner Protection Did Not Properly Administer New Home Warranty Claims

Aristocrat Condominium Association v. 48 Street Weehawken, L.L.C., No. A-5437-11T2 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. Nov. 14, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A New Jersey appeals court found the New Jersey Bureau of Homeowner Protection improperly denied an association’s claims for common element defects under the New Home Warranty Program as being outside the warranty period. [Read more]

Association Has Third-Party Beneficiary Status to Enforce Development Agreement

Club Envy of Spokane, LLC v. The Ridpath Tower Condominium Association, No. 31913-0-Ill (Wash. Ct. App. Nov. 18, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations; Documents: A Washington appeals court held that the Washington Condominium Act’s one-year statute of limitations to challenge a declaration amendment’s validity does not apply to failure to approve the amendment. [Read more]

Association Cannot Demolish House

Evans v. Davis, No. 14-12-01053-CV (Tex. App. Nov. 19, 2013)

Architectural Control/Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions/Powers of the Association: A Texas appeals court ruled that an association did not have the authority to demolish a house that was in violation of the deed restrictions. [Read more]

Tenants Are Not Responsible for Paying Condominium Assessments

Granville Condominium Homeowners Association v. Kuehner, 312 P.3d 702 (Wash. Ct. App. Nov. 5, 2013)

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A Washington appeals court affirmed that tenants occupying a condominium unit were not obligated to pay association assessments levied against the unit they occupied. [Read more]

Cost Discrepancy Does Not Relieve Contractor from Performing Under Settlement Agreement

Association of Apartment Owners of Nihilani at Princeville Resort v. Nihilani Group, LLC, 310 P.3d 1052 (Haw. Ct. App. Sept. 30, 2013)

Contracts: A Hawaii appeals court affirmed a ruling that a developer was responsible for fulfilling its obligations under a negotiated settlement with an association in spite of the developer’s mistaken assumption regarding cost of performance. [Read more]

Country Club Breached Member Contract

Caley v. Glenmoor Country Club, Inc., Nos. 2013 CA 00012, 2013 CA 00018 (Ohio Ct. App. Nov. 4, 2013)

Contracts: An Ohio appeals court ruled that a country club breached its contract with resigning members because it required them to continue paying dues following resignation but did not allow them to use the club facilities. [Read more]

Association Failed to Provide Evidence That Yard Was Not Well Maintained

Boyle v. Hernando Beach South Property Owners Association, Inc., No. 5D12-2993 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Sept. 27, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: A Florida appeals court reversed the grant of an injunction requiring a homeowner to comply with a restriction by “properly maintaining and trimming his landscaping and trees” because the association failed to specify how the owner violated the restriction and what steps he must take to ensure compliance. [Read more]

Boat Slips Are Not Condominium Units

Steenrod v. Louisville Yacht Club Association, Inc., Nos. 2010-CA-001444-MR, 2010-CA-001493-MR (Ky. Ct. App. Nov. 8, 2013)

Developmental Rights/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Kentucky appeals court ruled that a marina was not a condominium under the Kentucky Horizontal Property Act. [Read more]

Insurer Is Not Obligated to Compensate Association for Loss Due to Lawsuits Brought by the Association

Culbreath Isles Property Owners Association, Inc. v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Company of America, No. 8:12-cv-2928-T-26EAJ, U.S. Dist. Ct. (M.D. Fla. Nov. 5, 2013)

Risks and Liabilities: A Florida district court ruled that because an association’s losses were the result of claims filed by the association against property owners, the insurer had no duty to indemnify or otherwise provide coverage for those losses. [Read more]

Common Interest Ownership Act Does Not Limit Application of Corporate Law Voting Restrictions

The Triple Crown at Observatory Village Association, Inc. v. Village Homes of Colorado, Inc., No. 13CA1390 (Col. Ct. App. Nov. 7, 2013) (rehearing denied Dec. 5, 2013)

State and Local Legislation and Regulation/Powers of the Association: A Colorado appeals court affirmed that a declaration amendment was invalid because the association failed to comply with the nonprofit corporation act’s 60-day time limit for actions without a meeting. [Read more]

Association Did Not Violate Budget and Assessment Approval Requirements

Casey v. Sudden Valley Community Association, No. 70329-3-1 (Wash. Ct. App. May 27, 2014)

Assessments/Association Operations/Powers of the Association/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Washington appeals court ruled that a homeowners association’s process for adopting the annual budget and assessment rate did not violate the Washington homeowners associations act. [Read more]

Director Cannot Access Association’s Privileged Attorney-Client Communications

Fouts v. Breezy Point Condominium Association, No. 2013AP1585 (Wisc. Ct. App. June 17, 2014)

Association Operations: A Wisconsin appeals court ruled that an association director was not entitled to access privileged communications between the association and its attorney because the attorney-client privilege rested in the corporate entity, not individual directors. [Read more]

Association Must Repair Pond Situated within Its Borders

The Groves of Hidden Creek Condominium II Association, Inc. v. The Groves of Hidden Creek Community Association, Inc., No. 1-13-2395 (Ill. App. Ct. June 20, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement: An Illinois appeals court held that even though the developer inadvertently failed to convey a drainage pond to the association within which the pond was situated, the association was nevertheless responsible for costs to repair the pond. [Read more]

Modification Extending Term of Declaration Is Valid and Proper

Goldman v. Emerald Green Property Owners Association, Inc., 116 A.D.3d 1279, 984 N.Y.S.2d 459 (N.Y. App. Div. Apr. 17, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Assessments: A New York appeals court ruled that a declaration amendment that extended the declaration’s term and authorized the association to assess homeowners for common amenity maintenance costs was properly adopted. [Read more]

Marina Acquires Access Easement Over Condominium Common Area

Applegate Properties, Inc. v. Coronado Cays Homeowners Association, No. D062829 (Cal. Ct. App. May 30, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Contracts/Association Operations: A California appeals court ruled that a marina had a prescriptive easement over a condominium’s common area to access the marina. [Read more]

Easement That Does Not Benefit Unit Owners Is Invalid

Metropolitan Place Apartments, LLC v. Metropolitan Place Residential Condominium Owners Association, Inc., No. 2013AP2295 (Wis. Ct. App. June 5, 2014)

Declarant Rights: A Wisconsin appeals court held that a declarant did not have authority during the declarant control period to grant an easement over condominium property to tenants of a neighboring apartment complex because the easement did not benefit the condominium unit owners. [Read more]

Legislation Cannot Be Applied Retroactively

Little Mountain Community Association, Inc. v. The Southern Columbia Corp., No. 769 MDA 2013, 2014 PA Super 91 (Pa. Super. Ct. May 1, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Pennsylvania appeals court determined that the Uniform Planned Community Act did not apply retroactively to require that an association be formed for an older community. [Read more]

Enacting Ordinances Is Not Abuse of Police Power

Town of Dillon, Colorado v. Yacht Club Condominiums Home Owners Association, No. 12SC104 (Colo. May 27, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulation/Powers of the Association: The Colorado Supreme Court ruled that two municipal ordinances that prohibited unit owners from using public rights-of-way for parking did not constitute an abuse of power. [Read more]

Unit Owner Is Liable for Special Assessment

Randall v. Eclextions Lofts Condo Association, No. 13AP-708 (Ohio Ct. App. May 1, 2014)

Assessments: An Ohio appeals court determined that the unit purchaser was liable for a special assessment because he owned the unit on the assessment’s due date, even though the assessment had been levied before his purchase. [Read more]

Purchaser of Foreclosed Unit Not Liable for Prior Unpaid Assessments

Federal National Mortgage Association v. Lagoons Forest Condominium Association, No. 313953 (Mich. Ct. App. May 15, 2014)

Assessments: A Michigan appeals court held that the purchaser of a foreclosed unit was not liable to the association for unpaid assessments that predated the sheriff’s sale. [Read more]

Concerned Owners Group Has Standing to Sue Developer

Concerned Owners of Thistle Hill Estates Phase I, LLC v. Ryan Road Management, LLC, No. 02-12-00483-CV (Tex. App. Apr. 10, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Association Operations: A Texas appeals court ruled that a limited liability company formed by a group of concerned homeowners had standing to sue a developer to enforce a declaration. [Read more]

Developer Did Not Forfeit Title to Vacant Lot

The Retreats at Stone Fountain Condominium Owners Association Board v. Wanninger, L.L.C., No. 4-025/13-0489 (Iowa Ct. App. Apr. 16, 2014)

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement: An Iowa appeals court ruled that nothing in a condominium declaration allowed the association to assume ownership of an undeveloped parcel submitted to the condominium. [Read more]

Association Is Not Liable for Contractor’s Injuries

Escareno v. Terra Cotta Commons Condominiums Association, No. 1-12-0682 (Ill. App. Ct. Apr. 9, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities: A condominium association was not held liable for injuries sustained by an independent contractor because it did not retain sufficient control over the work performed. [Read more]

Bank Is Liable for Unpaid Assessments

Bermuda Dunes Private Residences Condominium Association, Inc. v. Bank of America, 133 So. 3d 609 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Mar. 7, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Florida appeals court held that a bank that purchased a condominium unit after foreclosure was not entitled to statutory protection from unpaid assessments that would be afforded to a first mortgagee. [Read more]

Directors Breached Duties by Failing to Comply with Declaration and Statutory Requirements

Palm v. 2800 Lake Shore Drive Condominium Association, No. 1-11-1290 (Ill. App. Ct. May 2, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Association Operations/Covenants Enforcement: An Illinois appeals court held that directors breached their fiduciary duties by violating requirements for open meetings, board approval and financial practices. [Read more]

Short-term Rentals Do Not Violate Covenants

Wilkinson v. Chiwawa Communities Association, 180 Wash. 2d 241 (Wash. Apr. 17, 2014)

Use Restrictions/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Washington Supreme Court ruled that short-term rentals did not violate covenants that prohibited commercial use and restricted lots to single-family residential use. [Read more]

Purchaser Who Acquired Property at Tax Sale Is Not Liable for Unpaid Assessments

A to Z Properties, Inc. v. Fairway Palms II Condominium Association, Inc., No. 4D13-1267 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Mar. 19, 2014)

Assessments/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Florida appeals court ruled that the person who purchased a condominium unit at a tax sale was not liable for unpaid assessments because the lien was extinguished by the tax deed. [Read more]

Reduced Tax Valuation of Common Area Is Improper

County of Clark v. Sun City Summerlin Community Association, Inc., No. 607766 (Nev. Mar. 25, 2014)

State and Local Laws and Regulations: The Nevada Supreme Court held that the State Board of Equalization erroneously reduced the tax valuation of common area property that was encumbered by use restrictions. [Read more]

Owner Cannot Convert Golf Course to Residential Lots

In re: Heatherwood Holdings, LLC, Nos. 12-16020, 12-16021 (11th Cir. Mar. 27, 2014)

Federal Law and Legislation/Association Operations: A federal appeals court held that a golf club purchaser must continue to operate the property as a golf course due to an implied restrictive covenant. [Read more]

Trial Court Must Determine Whether Association Is Authorized to Levy Special Assessment

Koler v. Grand Harbour Condominium Owners Association, No. E-13-046 (Ohio Ct. App. Mar. 28, 2014)

Assessments/Powers of the Association: An Ohio appeals court ruled that because the bylaws were ambiguous about an association’s authority to levy a special assessment without member approval, the trial court improperly granted summary judgment in favor of the association. [Read more]

Owners Not Required to Pay Assessments

Ryan Ranch Community Association, Inc. v. Kelley, Nos. 12CA2312, 12CA2316 (Col. Ct. App. Mar. 27, 2014)

Developmental Rights/State and Local Legislation and Regulation/Powers of the Association: A Colorado appeals court ruled that a homeowners association was not entitled to collect assessments for lots that were not properly annexed to the declaration. [Read more]

Association’s Demand to Access Owner’s Unit Must Be Reasonable and Necessary

Small v. Devon Condominium B Association, Inc., Nos. 4D10-2302, 4D10-5243, 4D11-247, 4D11-4119 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Apr. 2, 2014)

Association Operations/Covenants Enforcement/Powers of the Association: A Florida appeals court overruled a trial court order granting access to an owner’s unit to provide pest control services. [Read more]

Construction Defect Case Barred by Statute of Limitations

The Palisades at Fort Lee Condominium Association, Inc. v. 100 Old Palisade, No. L-2306-09 (N.J. Super. Ct. Law Div. Mar. 31, 2014)

Developer Liability/Risks and Liabilities: A New Jersey appeals court ruled that a condominium association’s suit to recover damages for construction defects was barred by the statute of limitations. [Read more]

Insurers Are Obligated to Pay for Repairs to Townhomes

The Village at Deer Creek Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Mid-Continent Casualty Company, No. WD76191 (Mo. Ct. App. Apr. 1, 2014)

Developer Liability/Risks and Liabilities: A Missouri appeals court ruled that an insurer was liable for damages caused by developer’s defective construction of townhome exteriors. [Read more]

Association Cannot Increase Assessments Beyond Amounts Specified in Declaration

Keltz v. Enchanted Hills Community Association, No. 12CA16 (Ohio Ct. App. Feb. 28, 2014)

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement/Association Operations/Powers of the Association:An Ohio appeals court ruled that an association could not assess lot owners for amounts greater than those set forth in the community’s declaration of covenants. [Read more]

Confirmation of Association’s Bankruptcy Reorganization Plan Was Denied

In re: Manchester Oaks Homeowners Association, Inc., No. 11-10179-BFK, Chapter 11 (Bankr. E.D. Va. March 12, 2014)

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement: A Virginia bankruptcy court denied confirmation of an association’s Chapter 11 reorganization plan because the association improperly categorized the claims in order to have the plan approved and because the plan’s funding relied on a special assessment levied by the board without authority. [Read more]

Association’s Fraud Claims Must Be Arbitrated

Villas di Tuscany Condominium Association, Inc. v. Villas di Tuscany, LLC, No. 12 MA 165 (Ohio Ct. App. Feb. 26, 2014)

Contracts: An Ohio appeals court ruled that a condominium association was required—under buyers’ purchase agreements with the developer—to arbitrate action against the developer for alleged misrepresentations made to unit buyers. [Read more]

Unit Owner Does Not Have Duty to Provide Association with Copy of Deed

Bel Air Glen Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Dowlatshahi, No. B243549 (Cal. Ct. App. March 5, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Contracts/Association Operations: A California appeals court ruled that a condominium association could not fine unit owners for failing to provide a copy of a lease when the property was not leased to the new occupant but had been conveyed by an unrecorded deed. [Read more]

Refusal to Allow Service Dog Violated Fair Housing Act

Sabal Palm Condominiums of Pine Island Ridge Association, Inc. v. Fischer, No. 12-60691-Civ-SCOLA (S.D. Fla. March 19, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions: A Florida district court ruled that a condominium association violated the Fair Housing Act by its unreasonable delay in granting a request by a physically disabled resident to keep a service dog. [Read more]

Association That Undertakes Tree Maintenance Has Duty to Maintain Trees in Safe Condition

Gibbons v. Horseshoe Lake Corporation, No. 311754 (Mich. Ct. App. March 11, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities: A Michigan appeals court reversed summary judgment in favor of an association because there was a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the association was negligent in failing to maintain trees on an access lot that injured a homeowner and damaged his property. [Read more]

Unit Owner Has Duty to Clear Walkway of Ice and Snow

Scrocca v. Ashwood Condominium Association, Inc., No. A13A2411 (Ga. Ct. App. March 13, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities/Covenants Enforcement: A Georgia appeals court ruled that a condominium association did not have a duty to clear ice and snow from the limited common area outside a unit because the unit owner had a duty to keep the area in a clean and sanitary condition. [Read more]

Content of Association’s Meetings Not Discoverable in Construction Defect Litigation

Seahaus La Jolla Owners Association v. The Superior Court of San Diego County, No. D064567 (Cal. Ct. App. March 12, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A California appeals court issued a writ of mandate ordering a trial court to vacate its order denying a homeowners association’s assertion of attorney-client privilege during discovery in a suit to recover damages for construction defects. [Read more]

Association Cannot Recover Pre-Foreclosure Unpaid Assessments

U.S. v. Forest Hill Garden East Condominium Association, Inc., No. 13-80513-CV, U.S. Dist. Ct. (S.D. Fla. Jan. 3, 2014)

Assessments: A Florida district court ruled that the condominium act’s imposition of liability on a foreclosing mortgagee does not trump the condominium declaration’s exemption for foreclosing mortgagees from unpaid pre-foreclosure assessments. [Read more]

Association Must Compensate Owner for Floor Repair

Canyon Vista Property Owners Association, Inc. v. Laubach, No. 03-11-00404-CV (Tex. App. Jan. 31, 2014)

Covenants Enforcement/Association Operations: A Texas appeals court affirmed a damage award to a condominium unit owner due to the association’s failure to repair the unit’s subfloor. [Read more]

Association Judgment Is Not an Encumbrance on Lot Title

Ensberg v. Nelson, No. 69644-1-I (Wash. Ct. App. Dec. 16, 2013)

Contracts/Sale and Lease Restrictions: A Washington appeals court ruled that a judgment against a homeowners association did not constitute an encumbrance on title to a lot because the lot owner was not a judgment debtor. [Read more]

Declaration’s Disclaimer Does Not Immunize Association from Liability for Its Own Negligence

Kedvale Street Properties, LLC v. Kedvale Court Condominium Association, 2014 IL App. (1st) 123454-U (Ill. App. Ct. Feb. 11. 2014)

Covenants Enforcement: An Illinois appeals court ruled that an exculpatory clause in the declaration did not release the association from liability for damage to a unit caused by the association’s own negligence. [Read more]

Whether Insurer Is Obligated to Replace Roofs Is Jury Question

Trout Brook South Condominium Association v. Harleysville Worcester Insurance Company, No. 12-2888 (RHK/JSM), U.S. Dist. Ct. (D. Minn. Feb. 5, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities/Contracts: A Minnesota federal court ruled that a jury must decide whether an insurance policy obligating the insurer to repair or replace damaged roofs with “like materials” required that the materials match in color the undamaged portions of the roofs. [Read more]

Insurer Not Required to Pay for Roof Replacement

Wright v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Company, No. 13-3727, U.S. App. Ct. (6th Cir. Feb. 18, 2014)

Risks and Liabilities/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: An Ohio court properly dismissed a suit against an insurer for failing replace a roof as required by subdivision design standards. [Read more]

Foreclosure Does Not Extinguish Association’s Lien

First State Bank v. Metro District Condominiums Property Owners’ Association, Inc., 2014 Ark. 48 (Ark. Feb. 6, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: In a case of first impression, the Arkansas Supreme Court held that an association lien was not extinguished by foreclosure of a first mortgage, and the property purchaser was liable for amounts owing at the time of conveyance under the Horizontal Property Act. [Read more]

Association Has Standing to Sue Developer

Market Lofts Community Association v. 9th Street Market Lofts, LLC, 222 Cal. App. 4th 924 (Cal. Ct. App. Jan. 7, 2014)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Developmental Rights: A California appeals court ruled that an association was entitled to sue developers to resolve disputes arising from parking license agreements. [Read more]

Association Cannot Demolish House

Evans v. Davis, No. 14-12-01053-CV (Tex. App. Nov. 19, 2013)

Architectural Control/Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions/Powers of the Association: A Texas appeals court ruled that an association did not have the authority to demolish a house that was in violation of the deed restrictions. [Read more]

Tenants Are Not Responsible for Paying Condominium Assessments

Granville Condominium Homeowners Association v. Kuehner, 312 P.3d 702 (Wash. Ct. App. Nov. 5, 2013)

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A Washington appeals court affirmed that tenants occupying a condominium unit were not obligated to pay association assessments levied against the unit they occupied. [Read more]

Cost Discrepancy Does Not Relieve Contractor from Performing Under Settlement Agreement

Association of Apartment Owners of Nihilani at Princeville Resort v. Nihilani Group, LLC, 310 P.3d 1052 (Haw. Ct. App. Sept. 30, 2013)

Contracts: A Hawaii appeals court affirmed a ruling that a developer was responsible for fulfilling its obligations under a negotiated settlement with an association in spite of the developer’s mistaken assumption regarding cost of performance. [Read more]

Country Club Breached Member Contract

Caley v. Glenmoor Country Club, Inc., Nos. 2013 CA 00012, 2013 CA 00018 (Ohio Ct. App. Nov. 4, 2013)

Contracts: An Ohio appeals court ruled that a country club breached its contract with resigning members because it required them to continue paying dues following resignation but did not allow them to use the club facilities. [Read more]

Association Failed to Provide Evidence That Yard Was Not Well Maintained

Boyle v. Hernando Beach South Property Owners Association, Inc., No. 5D12-2993 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Sept. 27, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: A Florida appeals court reversed the grant of an injunction requiring a homeowner to comply with a restriction by “properly maintaining and trimming his landscaping and trees” because the association failed to specify how the owner violated the restriction and what steps he must take to ensure compliance. [Read more]

Boat Slips Are Not Condominium Units

Steenrod v. Louisville Yacht Club Association, Inc., Nos. 2010-CA-001444-MR, 2010-CA-001493-MR (Ky. Ct. App. Nov. 8, 2013)

Developmental Rights/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Kentucky appeals court ruled that a marina was not a condominium under the Kentucky Horizontal Property Act. [Read more]

Insurer Is Not Obligated to Compensate Association for Loss Due to Lawsuits Brought by the Association

Culbreath Isles Property Owners Association, Inc. v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Company of America, No. 8:12-cv-2928-T-26EAJ, U.S. Dist. Ct. (M.D. Fla. Nov. 5, 2013)

Risks and Liabilities: A Florida district court ruled that because an association’s losses were the result of claims filed by the association against property owners, the insurer had no duty to indemnify or otherwise provide coverage for those losses. [Read more]

Common Interest Ownership Act Does Not Limit Application of Corporate Law Voting Restrictions

The Triple Crown at Observatory Village Association, Inc. v. Village Homes of Colorado, Inc., No. 13CA1390 (Col. Ct. App. Nov. 7, 2013) (rehearing denied Dec. 5, 2013)

State and Local Legislation and Regulation/Powers of the Association: A Colorado appeals court affirmed that a declaration amendment was invalid because the association failed to comply with the nonprofit corporation act’s 60-day time limit for actions without a meeting. [Read more]

Association Did Not Violate Fair Housing Act in Upholding Architectural Standards

Hollis v. Chestnut Bend Homeowners Association, No. 3:12-cv-0137, U.S. Dist. Ct. (D. Tenn. Sept. 24, 2013)

Architectural Control/Covenants Enforcement/Federal Law and Legislation: A Tennessee federal court ruled that an association’s refusal to approve a sunroom addition where handicapped children resided did not constitute discrimination under the Fair Housing Act. [Read more]

Debt for Unpaid Assessments Was Not Discharged in Bankruptcy Proceeding

Casas-Rodriguez v. Cosmopolitan on Lindbergh Condominium Association, Inc., No. A13A1103 (Ga. Ct. App. Sept. 30, 2013)

Assessments: A Georgia appeals court affirmed a monetary award to a condominium association seeking to foreclose its lien against a bankrupt unit owner for unpaid assessments, late fees and interest as well as attorneys’ fees incurred by the association before the owner’s bankruptcy filing. [Read more]

Insurer Is Not Obligated to Defend Association in Lawsuit

San Miguel Community Association v. State Farm General Insurance Company, No. G047738 (Cal. Ct. App. Oct. 1, 2013)

Association Operations/Risks and Liabilities: A California appeals court ruled that an insurer did not have a duty to defend an association where the lawsuit did not seek damages. [Read more]

Owner Cannot Transfer Ownership Interest in Limited Common Elements

Sinatra v. Bussel, 119 So. 3d 473 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. July 10, 2013, rehearing denied Aug. 16, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: A Florida appeals court ruled that condominium unit owners did not have authority to transfer interest in a limited common element to purchasers of a unit in another phase of the development. [Read more]

Inartful Drafting Leads to Years of Controversy Over Declaration’s Terms

Marwick v. The Homeward Glen Homeowners Association, No. 2-12-0624 (Ill. App. Ct. Sept. 17, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: An Illinois appeals court held that amendments could only be made to the declaration after the first 20-year term and that two-conditions precedent had to be satisfied before any amendment was effective. [Read more]

Ambiguous Declaration Provisions Cause Amendment and Enforcement Problems

Lawton v. Schwartz, 308 P.3d 1033 (N.M. Ct. App. June 17, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions: A New Mexico appeals court reversed a ruling that a declaration could be amended before the 55-year-duration period expired and remanded the case for interpretation of ambiguous language. [Read more]

Assessment Lien Is Void Due to Lack of Notice

Country Club Condominium Owners’ Association v. Sammon, No. 99220 (Ohio Ct. App. Aug. 14, 2013)

Powers of the Association: An Ohio appeals court affirmed a ruling that a lien filed by an association against a unit for limited common area repair costs was void because the association failed to provide the owner with proper notice and opportunity for a hearing. [Read more]

Zoning Regulations Prohibit Home-based Dog Grooming Business

Lowney v. Zoning Board of Appeals of the Black Point Beach Club Association, No. AC 34594, (Conn. App. Ct. July 16, 2013)

Use Restrictions: A Connecticut appeals court affirmed a finding that a zoning board of appeals properly upheld denial of a homeowner’s application to conduct a dog grooming business from her garage. [Read more]

Restriction Prohibiting For Sale Signs Is Unlawful

Hawk v. PC Village Association, Inc., 309 P.3d 918 (Ariz. Ct. App. Sept. 3, 2013)

Architectural Control/State and Local Legislation: An Arizona appeals court ruled that a restrictive covenant prohibiting homeowners from placing “for sale” signs on their property was unlawful. [Read more]

Owner of Unbuilt Units Cannot Vote In Association Affairs

Northernaire Resort & Spa, LLC v. Northernaire Condominium Association, Inc., No. 2012AP1707 (Wis. Ct. App. Sept. 17, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation: A Wisconsin appeals court ruled that under the terms of the condominium declaration, the owner of 63 unbuilt units was not entitled to vote on behalf of those units in association affairs. [Read more]

Express Contract Terms Trump Oral Representations and Promotional Materials

Mancuso, v. Burton Farm Development Company LLC, No. COA13-38 (N.C. Ct. App. Sept. 17, 2013)

Developer Liability: A North Carolina appeals court held that the property report and purchase agreement protect the developer from fraud and breach of contract claims based on oral representations and marketing materials. [Read more]

Foreclosure Extinguished Lender’s Priority Interest in Property

Freedom Mortgage Corporation v. Trovare Homeowners Association, No. 2:11-cv-01403-MMD-GWF, U.S. Dist. Ct. (D. Nev. Aug. 23, 2013)

Federal Law and Legislation: A Nevada federal court refused to reconsider an order denying summary judgment to a lender whose priory lien was extinguished by foreclosure of a homeowners association’s assessment lien. [Read more]

Owner of Unsold Units is Entitled to Repayment from Association

Sundial, Inc. v. The Villages at Wolf Hollow Condominium Homeowner’s Association, Inc., 310 P.3d 1233 (Utah Ct. App. Sept. 12, 2013)

Miscellaneous Association Problems and Operations: A Utah appeals court affirmed a ruling that an association was not required to include prejudgment interest in the amount of damages it had been ordered to pay an owner who had paid substantial sums to fund association operations. [Read more]

Limiting Short-Term Rentals Does Not Alter Owners’ Property Rights

Cavazos v. Board of Governors of The Council of Co-Owners of The Summit Condominiums, No. 13-12-00524-CV (Tex. App. Sept. 19, 2013)

Powers of the Association: A Texas appeals court ruled that amending a condominium declaration and bylaws to create a minimum lease term did not destroy or alter a unit in violation of the condominium act. [Read more]

Board Unable to Amend Declaration Without Proper Owner Vote

Kawawaki v. Academy Square Condominium Association, No. 42982-9-11 (Wash. Ct. App. Sept. 24, 2013)

Powers of the Association/Use Restrictions: A Washington appeals court affirmed that an association board did not have the authority to adopt a rule that altered the application of a leasing restriction in the declaration. [Read more]

Secondhand Smoke Is Not Nuisance

Schuman v. Greenbelt Homes, Inc., 212 Md. App. 451, 69 A.3d 512 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. June 27, 2013) (cert. denied Oct. 21, 2013)

Use Restrictions: A Maryland appeals court affirmed a ruling that secondhand smoke from a neighbor’s unit did not constitute a legal nuisance. [Read more]


Condominium Act Does Not Require Insurer to Cover Property Excluded Under Its Policy

Citizens Property Insurance Corporation v. River Manor Condominium Association, Inc., No. 4D12-901 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Apr. 10, 2013)

Association Operations/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: The Florida Court of Appeals held that a condominium association may obtain less insurance coverage than is required by the Florida Condominium Act. [Read more]

Association Must Own Community Building

Greens at Half Hollow Home Owners Association, Inc. v. Greens Golf Club, LLC, 39 Misc. 3d 1242(A) (N.Y. Sup. Ct. June 5, 2013)

Developmental Rights/Municipal Relations: A New York Supreme Court ruled that the zoning code required subdivision common areas, including community building and associated recreational facilities, be conveyed to the homeowners association. [Read more]

Lot Owner’s Club Membership May be Suspended

Peters v. Bentwater Yacht and Country Club, Ltd., No. 4:12-cv-3596, U.S. Dist. Ct. (S. D. Tex. June 3, 2013)

Miscellaneous Association Operations: A federal district court in Texas ruled that a lot owner’s club membership may be suspended when the spouse fails to pay club dues on a separate lot owned by the spouse. [Read more]

Golf Course Cannot be Converted to More Profitable Use

Ponderosa Pines Golf Course, LLC v. Ponderosa Pines Property Owner’s Association, No. 31,489 (N.M. Ct. App. May 2, 2013)

Developmental Rights/Sale and Lease Restrictions: A New Mexico appeals court upheld an order that precluded a privately owned golf course located within a subdivision to be converted into another, more profitable use. [Read more]

Association Not Liable for Visitor’s Injuries

Siegel v. Park Avenue Condominium Association, Inc., No. A13A0357 (Ga. Ct. App. June 19, 2013)

Association Operations: The Georgia Court of Appeals held that a condominium association was not liable for injuries sustained by a visitor when she fell inside the automatic revolving door at the building’s entrance. [Read more]

Association Not Entitled to Compensation for Lost Assessments

United States of America v. Mariners Cove Townhomes Association, Incorporated, 705 F.3d 540 (5th Cir. 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/Federal Law and Legislation: A U.S. appeals court ruled that an association’s right to collect assessments on condemned townhomes was not a compensable property interest because the loss was incidental to taking property subject to restrictive covenants. [Read more]

Association Not Negligent for Architectural Review

W&W Del Lago, LLC v. Rancho Del Lago Homeowner’s Association, No. D060990 (Cal. Ct. App. June 19, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/Architectural Control: A California appeals court affirmed a ruling that an association was not negligent in reviewing and approving a lot owner’s inaccurate construction plans. [Read more]

Board Breached Fiduciary Duty by Failing to Conduct Owner Vote

Wolinsky v. Kadison, 987 N.E.2d 971 (Ill. App. Ct. Mar. 29, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/Sale and Lease Restrictions: An Illinois appeals court affirmed a finding that an association board breached a fiduciary duty to a unit owner by exercising the association’s right of first refusal to purchase a unit without first obtaining the unit owner vote required under the governing documents. [Read more]

Amendment to Relieve Developer of Maintenance Obligations Is Improper

Flescher v. Oak Run Associates, Ltd., Nos. 5D12-2575, 5D12-32354 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Apr. 5, 2013)

Developmental Rights/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A Florida appeals court ruled that a developer’s amendment to a subdivision’s restrictive covenants—which relieved the developer of its maintenance obligations—was an improper exercise of its amendment power. [Read more]

Insurance Doesn’t Provide Coverage for Lawsuit

Hunt v. Beach Club Condominium Association, Inc., No. 2012AP2197-FT (Wis. Ct. App. June 4, 2013)

Risks and Liabilities: A Wisconsin appeals court affirmed a finding that a condominium association’s directors and officers insurance policy did not provide coverage for a legal suit because the plaintiffs did not seek monetary damages. [Read more]

Association Waived Right to Enforce Declaration

Loch ‘N’ Green Village Section Two Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Murtaugh, No. 02-12-00094-CV (Tex. App. May 30, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: A Texas appeals court affirmed a trial court’s order that certain lots specifically excluded from the association’s declaration could not be compelled by the association to become members or pay assessments. [Read more]

Association Didn’t Unreasonably Restrict Owner’s Easement Rights

Northwest Properties Brokers Network, Inc. v. Early Dawn Estates Homeowners’ Association, 295 P.3d 314 (Wash. Ct. App. Feb. 20, 2013)

Miscellaneous Association Operations: A Washington appeals court reversed a trial court ruling that an association had unreasonably restricted the easement rights of an adjacent property owner when it denied him a key to the access gate control box. [Read more]

Claims for HOA’s Breach of Fiduciary Duty Are Insured

Pulliam v. Travelers Indemnity Company, No. 2012-211939 (S.C. Ct. App. May 8, 2013)

Risks and Liabilities: A South Carolina appeals court ruled that an association’s insurance policy did provide coverage for allegations against the association, including failing to establish a reserve fund and failing to warn owners of the potential conflict of interest in a developer-controlled board of directors. [Read more]

Owner’s Lawyer Barred from Board Meetings

SB Liberty, LLC v. Isla Verde Association, Inc., No. D061261 (Cal. Ct. App. May 22, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A California appeals court upheld a ruling that an association was not required to open its board meetings to a member’s legal counsel. [Read more]

Association Has Authority to Sue Developer for Damages to Individual Units

University Commons Riverside Home Owners Association, Inc. v. University Commons Morgantown, LLC, 741 S.E.2d 613 (W. Va. Mar. 28, 2013)

Association Operations/Developer Liability: The West Virginia Supreme Court held that the State’s Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act authorizes an association to sue a developer for damages to two or more individual units from alleged construction defects. [Read more]

City Must Compensate HOA for Taking Open Space

Willowmet Homeowners Association, Inc. v. City of Brentwood, Tennessee, No. M2012-01315- COA-R3-CV (Tenn. Ct. App. May 16, 2013)

Association Operations: A Tennessee appeals court reversed a trial court’s decision to deny a homeowners association compensation for open space that was conveyed to the City of Brentwood by the subdivision’s developers. [Read more]

Owner Not Liable For Assessments When Board Wasn’t Established

Hall v. Town Creek Neighborhood Association, No. A12A1972 (Ga. Ct. App. Mar. 28, 2013)

Association Operations: The Georgia Court of Appeals held that a declarant does not have the power of an association board to levy assessments, even though the declarant may have the authority to appoint the board. [Read more]

Association Not Liable for Guest’s Injuries

Juzwicki v. Board of Managers, 1910-1912 Halsted Condominium Association, No. 1-11-0754 (Ill. App. Ct. Feb. 14, 2013)

Risks and Liabilities: An Illinois appeals court upheld a ruling that a condominium association was not liable for injuries sustained by a unit owner’s guest who was injured falling down an air shaft while walking on an unimproved area of the roof. [Read more]

Exclusive Telecommunications Agreement Violates FCC Rule

Lansdowne on the Potomac Homeowners Association, Inc. v. OpenBand at Lansdowne, LLC, 713 F.3d 187 (4th Cir. Apr. 5, 2013)

Federal Law and Legislation: A federal appeals court affirmed a ruling that a series of agreements designed to give a monopoly to a cable service provider were null and void under FCC rules. [Read more]

Association Must Replace Exterior Patio Doors

Pahl v. Lexington Riverside Condo Association, No. A12-0967 (Minn. Ct. App. Mar. 25, 2013)

Contracts/Covenants Enforcement/Miscellaneous Association Operations: A Minnesota appeals court upheld a determination that a condominium association had breached its contract with a unit owner when it failed to replace her damaged patio doors. [Read more]

Board Must Disclose Books and Records to Owner

Palm v. 2800 Lake Shore Drive Condominium Association, No. 110505 (Ill. Apr. 25, 2013)

State and Local Legislation and Regulation: The Illinois Supreme Court upheld a finding by the appeals court that a Chicago municipal ordinance that authorized unit owners to inspect a condominium association’s books and records within three days of making a written request was a valid exercise of the city’s home rule power. [Read more]

Board Must Arbitrate Construction Defect Claims

Pulte Home Corporation v. Vermillion Homeowners Association, Inc., No. 2D12-1532 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Jan. 16, 2013)

Contracts/Developer Liability: A Florida appeals court held that a homeowners association, acting as the agent of all homeowners, was bound to arbitrate construction defect claims under purchase agreements signed by the individual homeowners. [Read more]

Board Responsible For Preserving the Declaration

Southfields of Palm Beach Polo and Country Club Homeowners Association, Inc. v. McCullough, Nos. 4D11-1130 and 4D11-4659 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Apr. 17, 2013)

Association Operations: The Florida Court of Appeals held that a homeowner association’s declaration required the board to take the necessary action to prevent the declaration from expiring under the Florida Marketable Record Titles to Real Property Act. [Read more]

Unreasonable Demand for Medical Records Violates Fair Housing Act

Bhogaita v. Altamonte Heights Condominium Association, Inc., No. 6:11-cv-1637-Orl-31DAB (M.D. Fla. Dec. 17, 2012)

Federal Law and Legislation: A Florida court found that a condominium association’s intrusive search for more information regarding a unit owner’s medical condition constituted a denial of his requested accommodation under the Fair Housing Act. [Read more]

Board Discriminated Against Handicapped Owners

Board of Directors of Cameron Grove Condominium, II v. State of Maryland Commission on Human Relations, No. 47 (Md. Mar. 28, 2013)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Maryland appeals court ordered a condominium board to pay damages to unit owners who were denied reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. [Read more]

Insurer Has No Duty to Defend Association in Negligence Suit

Commodore Plaza Condominium Association, Inc. v. QBE Insurance Corporation, No. 12-22534-CIV-Seitz/Simonton (S.D. Fla. Jan. 14, 2013)

Risks and Liabilities/Association Operations/Contracts: A Florida district court ruled that a condominium association was not entitled to a defense of negligence suit under its directors and officers insurance policy because all of the claims in the underlying lawsuit were excluded by the policy. [Read more]

Lot Owner Bound by Implied Covenant

Farris v. The Estates of Millbrook Homeowners Association, Inc., No.2-12-0432 (Ill. App. Ct. Mar. 20, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: An Illinois appeals court found that although restrictive covenants were not properly recorded with subdivision plats, the lots were subject to the implied restrictive covenants referenced by the plats. [Read more]

Renting Garage Units to Public Violates Declaration and Zoning Laws

Noxsel v. Boquet Estates Owners Association, No. E053305 (Cal. Ct. App. Mar. 8, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A developer violated municipal zoning laws and the condominium declaration by renting garage units to the public. [Read more]

HOA’s Refusal to Approve Boathouse Breached Declaration

Pointe II on Semiahmoo Owners Association v. Nauman, No. 67762-4-I, 67960-I (Wash. Ct. App. Feb. 19, 2013)

Architectural Control/Association Operations: A Washington appeals court upheld a ruling that a homeowners association’s refusal to approve an owner’s boathouse plans was arbitrary, capricious and in bad faith. [Read more]

Association Can Enforce Its Own Traffic Rules

Poris v. Lake Holiday Property Owners Association, 983 N.E. 2d 993 (Ill. Jan. 25, 2013)

Powers of the Association: The Illinois Supreme Court held that a homeowners association was entitled to enforce its speeding regulations on its private roads, and that the association had the power to issue citations to association members. [Read more]

Declarant May Not Withdraw Lots from Subdivision

Vista Ridge Master Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Arcadia Holdings at Vista Ridge, LLC, No. 12CA0967 (Col. Ct. App. Feb. 28, 2013)

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A Colorado appeals court affirmed a ruling that a declarant was prohibited from withdrawing and de-annexing lots from a platted portion of a common interest community after other lots in that portion had been sold. [Read more]

Purchaser Did Not Forfeit Developmental Rights

19650 NE 18th Ave. LLC v. Presidential Estates Homeowners Association, 103 So.3d 191 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2012)

Developmental Rights: A Florida appeals court held that a violation of a restrictive covenants’ controlled density provision did not negate the property owners’ developmental rights under the covenant. [Read more]

HOA’s Arrest of Homeowner Is Malicious Prosecution

Alamo Country Club Owners Association v. Shelton, No. 13-10-00300-CV (Tex. App. 2012)

Association Operations: A Texas appeals court affirmed judgment in favor of a homeowner who was arrested by the association for attempting to use the community golf course. [Read more]

HOA Doesn’t Have Authority to Restrict Lot Usage

Estates at Desert Ridge Trails Homeowners’ Association v. Vazquez, Nos. 30, 944; 31,590 (N.M. Ct. App. Feb. 8, 2013)

Powers of the Association: In a case of first impression, a New Mexico appeals court affirmed a ruling that, unless the declaration provides otherwise, an association has limited ability to restrict the use or occupancy of individual units or the behavior within those units. [Read more]

Unequal Enforcement of No-Business Restriction May Constitute Racial Discrimination

Fielder v. Sterling Park Homeowners Association, No. C11-1688RS (D. Wash. 2012)

Federal Law and Legislation/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Washington district court held that the business judgment rule does not protect an association or the individual board members from liability for civil rights and fair housing violations. [Read more]

Certain Owners Exempt from Special Assessment

Green v. Lake Montowese Association, 387 S.W.3d 413 (Mo. Ct. App. Dec. 18, 2012)

Assessments: A Missouri appeals court affirmed a ruling that homeowners who were denied access to a central water system were exempt from a special assessment to replace the system. [Read more]

Association Had Legal Authority to Create New Parking Spaces

Harnett v. Washington Harbour Condominium Unit Owners’ Association, 53 A.3d 1298 (D.C. 2012)

Powers of the Association: A Washington, D.C., appeals court affirmed that a condominium association did not exceed its authority by creating new parking spaces in the condominium common elements and auctioning them to residents with the highest bids. [Read more]

Association Entitled to Compensation for Loss of Riparian Rights

Lynnhaven Dunes Condominium Association v. City of Virginia Beach, 284 Va. 661 (2012)

State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Municipal Relations: The Virginia Supreme Court determined that a condominium association was entitled to compensation for the loss of its riparian rights when sand from a dredging project was placed on the beach to improve navigation of the Chesapeake Bay. [Read more]

Association Not Entitled to Insurance Proceeds for Damage to Units

Bay Colony Condominium Association v. Scottsdale Insurance Company, No. 11-4865(NLH-JS) (D.N.J. Dec. 26, 2012)

Risks and Liabilities: A New Jersey district court ruled that a condominium association was not entitled to insurance proceeds for damage to system components that serviced individual units. [Read more]

Association Entitled to Not Renew Maintenance Agreement

Country Club South Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Warren Country Club Villas Condominium Unit Owners Association, Inc., 1012 Ohio 5835 (Ohio Ct. App. Dec. 10, 2012)

Powers of the Association: An Ohio appeals court affirmed a ruling that after the developers of a condominium relinquished control of the association’s board of directors, the newly elected board of unit owners was entitled to rescind a maintenance agreement executed by the developer-controlled board. [Read more]

Parking and Storage Spaces Not Association Property upon Turnover of Developer Control

Courvoisier Courts, LLC v. Courvoisier Courts Condominium Association, Inc., 105 So.3d 579 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Dec. 19, 2012)

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement/Contracts: A Florida appeals court held that a condominium developer did not improperly transfer parking and storage spaces to itself prior to turning over control of the association to unit owners, thereby preventing those limited common elements from becoming the association’s property. [Read more]

Board’s Mismanagement Is Insufficient Reason to Annul Owners’ Assessment Obligation

CSL Community Association, Inc. v. Meador, 973 N.E.2d 597 (Ind. Ct. App. Aug. 13, 2012)

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement: An Indiana appeals court ruled that a homeowner was obligated to pay assessments, even though the association’s financial mismanagement led to a failure to maintain improvements and amenities in the community. [Read more]

Association Entitled to Tax-Exempt Status

Fort Ticonderoga Association, Inc. v. Town of Orwell, Nos. 220-9-11 Ancv, 221-9-11 Ancv (Vt. Super. Ct. Nov., 2012)

Tax and Tax Legislation/Municipal Relations: A Vermont court overturned the Town of Orwell Board of Listers’ decision that denied tax-exempt status to a nonprofit corporation, which was created to maintain Lake Champlain’s historical properties. [Read more]

Insurance Dispute Over Storm Damage Must Be Tried

Homestead Hills Homeowner Association v. American Family Mutual Insurance Company, No. A12-0703 (Minn. Ct. App., Nov. 26, 2012)

Risks and Liabilities: A Minnesota appeals court reversed a grant of summary judgment in a suit filed by a homeowners association against its property insurer because a genuine issue of fact existed as to whether the insured property was damaged by a storm or whether the damage resulted from a manufacturing defect. [Read more]

Association Authorized to Govern Community

Osmond Lane Homeowners Association v. Landrith, 2013 UT App. 20 (Utah Ct. App. Jan. 25, 2013)

Covenants Enforcement: A Utah appeals court affirmed an association’s ability to enforce a community’s declaration, even though the association was not named in said declaration. [Read more]

Amendment Removing Budget Approval Requirement Invalid

Pole v. Sterling Woods Condominium Association, No. 304001 (Mich. Ct. App. Aug. 7, 2012)

Assessments/Powers of the Association: A Michigan appeals court affirmed a finding that an amendment to condominium documents—which removed the requirement that unit owners must approve the annual budget—was a material alteration of owners’ rights and required approval of two-thirds of the owners before it could be adopted. [Read more]

Lessee Not Entitled to Set-off of Maintenance Dues for Unit Damage

170 West End Avenue Owners Corp. v. Turchin, No. L & T 85298/2011, N.Y. Civ. Ct., Nov. 29, 2012

Assessments: The Civil Court of New York City ruled in favor of a cooperative association in its suit against an apartment lessee for failure to pay maintenance dues and rent. [Read more]

Lien for Leasehold Owner’s Unpaid Assessments Doesn’t Attach to Interest of Fee Simple Owner

Fairway Estates Association of Apartment Owners v. Young, No. 68152-4-I, Wash. App. Ct., Dec. 3, 2012

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement: A Washington appeals court affirmed a ruling that an association’s lien against a condominium unit for the leasehold owner’s unpaid assessments did not attach to the underlying fee simple ownership interest in the property. [Read more]

Developer Not Liable for Failing to Build Clubhouse

Gold Strike Heights Homeowners Association v. Financial Pacific Insurance Company, No. C066240, Cal. App. Ct., July 13, 2012

Developer Liability: A California appeals court found that a developer who failed to build a clubhouse—which was planned for the second phase of an unfinished subdivision—was not liable for damages to the homeowners association. [Read more]

Insurer Must Pay Association’s Loss Claim

Kings Ridge Community Association, Inc. v. Sagamore Insurance Company, No. 5D11-1051, Fla. App. Ct., July 6, 2012

Contracts/Association Operations: A Florida appeals court reversed a ruling that had originally found that damage to a clubhouse owned and maintained by a homeowners association was not covered under its “all-risk” policy with the insurer. [Read more]

Developers Barred from Enforcing Mandatory Arbitration Provision After Project Completed

Promenade at Playa Vista Homeowners Association v. Western Pacific Housing, Inc., No. B225086, Cal. App. Ct., Nov. 8, 2011

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement: A California appeals court upheld an order that developers of a condominium complex were barred from enforcing a mandatory arbitration clause contained in the condominium’s declaration because the restrictions were a servitude that ran with the land and the developers no longer had any ownership interest in the property. [Read more]

Renting Property to Unrelated Renters Doesn’t Violate Single Family Restriction

South Kaywood Community Association v. Long, No. 00691, Md. Ct. Spec. App., Nov. 26, 2012

Covenants Enforcement/Use Restrictions: A Maryland appeals court upheld a ruling that found a covenant that restricted home usage to single-family residences did not prohibit owners from renting their homes to persons not related by blood, marriage or adoption. [Read more]

Developer Properly Reserved Right to Expand Condominium Without Owners’ Consent

The Villas at Woodson Bend Condominium Association, Inc. v. South Fork Development, Inc., No. 2010-CA-000578-MR, Ky. App. Ct., Dec. 7, 2012

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement: A Kentucky appeals court affirmed a finding that a condominium master deed had reserved the right for the developer to add future units and reallocate percentage interests in the common elements without approval of a majority of unit owners. [Read more]

Owners Entitled to Damages for Common Area Construction Defects Which Caused Unit Damage

Wyman v. Ayer Properties, LLC, No. 11-P-1046, Mass. App. Ct., Dec. 12, 2012

Developer Liability: A Massachusetts appeals court ruled that an award of compensatory damages for negligent construction of a condominium’s common areas of was not barred by the economic loss rule. [Read more]

Leaking Pipe Damage Not Covered by Insurance

Audubon Hill South Condominium Association v. Community Association Underwriters of America, Inc., No. 11-P-1546, Mass. App. Ct., Sept. 20, 2012

Risks and Liabilities: A Massachusetts appeals court affirmed a ruling that a leak below a condominium unit that caused the gradual collapse of the unit’s floor was excluded from coverage under the association’s comprehensive insurance policy. [Read more]

Court Erred in Granting Summary Judgment to Owner Who Refused to Pay Assessments

Baywood Estates Property Owners Association, Inc. v. Caolo, No. 12-12-00063-CV, Tex. App. Ct., Sept. 28, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: A Texas appeals court reversed a ruling that a homeowners association lacked the authority to collect assessments for common area maintenance, and remanded the case for further proceedings to establish whether the restrictive covenant authorizing the assessment applied to all lot owners. [Read more]

Manager Owes Restitution for Misappropriated Funds

Club Chalet Homeowners‘ Association, Inc. v. Matthews, No. E2011-02237-COA-R3-CV, Tenn. App. Ct., Sept. 19, 2012

Association Operations: A Tennessee appeals court affirmed a judgment that awarded a homeowners association $50,000 in damages when the property manager concealed a co-worker’s misappropriation of association funds. [Read more]

Not Repairing Common Elements is a Breach of Fiduciary Duty

Duffy v. Orlan Brook Condominium Owners’ Association, No. 1-11-3577, Ill. App. Ct., Sept. 28, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: An Illinois appeals court ruled that a condominium association and its board of directors breached their fiduciary duty by failing to repair promptly structural defects that caused unit damage. [Read more]

Prevailing Party Entitled to Attorney’s Fees in Action to Enforce Covenants

Goldberg v. Astor Plaza Condominium Association, No. 1-11-0620, Ill. App. Ct., March 23, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: A statute that awards attorney’s fees to the prevailing party in actions that enforce restrictive covenants is mandatory, and it cannot be waived at the discretion of the trial court. [Read more]

Developer Can’t Unilaterally Amend Covenants After 80 Percent of Lots Are Sold

Grassy Meadows Sky Ranch Landowners Association v. Grassy Meadows Airport, Inc., No. 20100925-CA, Utah App. Ct., July 6, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: A Utah appeals court affirmed that a developer forfeited the right to amend a subdivision’s restrictive covenants after 80 percent of lots in the community were sold. [Read more]

Assessment to Fund Repairs is Proper and Valid

Lowery v. Allenmore Ridge Condominium Association, No. 41571-2-II, Wash. App. Ct., Oct. 2, 2012

Assessments/Powers of the Association: A Washington appeals court affirmed a finding that repairs to a condominium building for water intrusion damage did not require the approval of unit owners. [Read more]

“No Dogs” Policy Did Not Violate Fair Housing Act

Sun Harbor Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Bonura, No. 4D10-3038, Fla. App. Ct., June 13, 2012

Federal Law and Legislation/Covenants Enforcement: A Florida appeals court ruled that a homeowners association did not violate the federal Fair Housing Act’s disability discrimination provision by enforcing its “No Dogs” policy. [Read more]


Owners Established that Covenant is Unconscionable

Bergman v. Spruce Peak Realty, LLC, No. 2:11-cv-128, U.S. Dist. Ct., Dist. Vt., March 20, 2012

Assessments/Developmental Rights: A Vermont district court denied a developer’s motion to dismiss claims that alleged one of the association’s covenants—which required residential unit owners to share the costs of hotel amenity use—was unconscionable. [Read more]

Challenge to Bylaws Not a Derivative Claim

Ewer v. Lake Arrowhead Association, Inc., No. 2011AP113, Wis. App. Ct., May 24, 2012

Covenants Enforcement/Association Operations: A Wisconsin appeals court reversed the dismissal of a property owner’s challenge against a covenant that allowed an association to collect different assessment amounts, holding that the suit was properly brought on behalf of the individual owner and was not considered a derivative claim. [Read more]

Owner Must Modify Home Violating Height Limit

Greenbank Beach and Boat Club, Inc. v. Bunney, No. 66308-9-I, Wash. App. Ct., May 29, 2012

Covenants Enforcement/Architectural Control: A Washington appeals court affirmed a ruling that homeowners must modify their homes to comply with a restrictive covenant that limits the height of dwellings to 15 feet. [Read more]

Memo to Owners Doesn’t Constitute Libel

Mendez v. Kavanaugh, No. 13-11-00622-CV, Texas App. Ct., Aug. 21, 2012

Miscellaneous Association Operations: A memo posted to homeowners by the former association president indicating that the current president and treasurer were under investigation for embezzlement did not constitute libel. [Read more]

Association Liable Under Consumer Protection Act

MRA Property Management, Inc. v. Armstrong, No. 93 Sept. Term, 2007, Md. App. Ct., April 30, 2012

Association Operations/State and Local Legislation and Regulation: A Maryland appeals court held that the Maryland Consumer Protection Act could apply to disclosures made in resale certificates given to prospective condominium purchasers by the condominium association. [Read more]

Renovation Policy Doesn’t Violate Fair Housing Act

Nicolari v. Harbour Landing Condominium Association, Inc., No. 3:09cv1553 (JBA), U.S. Dist. Ct., Dist. Conn., July 24, 2012

Federal Law and Legislation: A Connecticut district court ruled that a condominium association’s refusal to allow an unmarried owner to renovate her unit did not constitute discrimination on the basis of gender or sexual orientation. [Read more]

Covenant to Arbitrate Construction Defect Disputes Enforceable

Pinnacle Museum Tower Association v. Pinnacle Market Development (US), LLC, No. S186149, Calif. Supr. Ct., Aug. 16, 2012

Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulations/Developmental Rights: The California Supreme Court ruled that a covenant requiring arbitration of construction defect disputes was not unconscionable and was enforceable against the association. [Read more]

Association Can Lease and Operate Marina

Roats v. Blakely Island Maintenance Commission, Inc., No. 66514-6-I, Wash. App. Ct., July 2, 2012

Powers of the Association/Assessments: A Washington appeals court affirmed that a homeowners association had the authority to lease and operate marina facilities and assess homeowners for operating costs and losses. [Read more]


Title to Unexercised Declarant Rights Passes to Association

Alessi v. Bowen Court Condominium, No. 2010-436-Appeal, R.I. Supr. Ct., June 4, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: A purchaser who acquired a time-restricted right to exclude his parcel from a condominium project failed to exercise that right and therefore forfeited title to the property, which passed to the condominium association. [Read more]

Renovations Violate Restrictive Covenants

Cathedral Hill Tower Condominium Association v. Garbar, No. A124711, Calif. App. Ct., June 29, 2012

Architectural Control/Covenants Enforcement: A California appeals court found that renovations that encroached on a condominium’s common area violated its restrictive covenants. [Read more]

Injury Claim Not Barred by Snow and Ice Removal Act

Gallagher v. The Union Square Condominium Homeowner’s Association, No. 2-09-0271, Ill. App. Ct., Jan. 27, 2010

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: An Illinois appeals court reversed a ruling that had dismissed a unit owner’s complaint against a condominium association for liability for injuries he sustained when he slipped on ice in his driveway. [Read more]

Officers Must Be Elected by Members’ Weighted Vote

Heron at Destin West Beach & Bay Resort Condominium Association, Inc. v. Osprey at Destin West Beach & Bay Resort Condominium Association, Inc., No. 1D11-3305, Fla. App. Ct., July 3, 2012

Association Operations/Covenants Enforcement: A Florida appeals court ruled that Florida’s nonprofit corporation statute did not prevent a master condominium association from adhering to a weighted voting procedure set forth in its governing documents to elect its officers. [Read more]

Declarant Retains Control of Unassigned Parking

MetroClub Condominium Association v. 201-59 North Eighth Street Associates, L.P., No. 2621 EDA 2011, Pa. Super. Ct., June 12, 2012

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement: A Pennsylvania appeals court ruled that a condominium developer retained control of unassigned parking spaces as long as it owned any unit in the condominium. [Read more]

POA Can’t Collect Assessments to Maintain Rec. Facilities

Rybarchyk v. Pocono Summit Lake Property Owners Association, Inc., No. 2370 C.D. 2011, Pa. Commw. Ct., July 24, 2012

Assessments/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Pennsylvania appeals court upheld a trial court ruling that a voluntary property owners association was not entitled to collect assessments from nonmembers to pay costs of maintaining the subdivision’s recreational facilities. [Read more]

Out Parcel Owner Proves Easement over HOA’s Private Roads

Sandie, LLC v. The Plantations Owners Association, Inc., No. 6048-VCG, Del. Chancery Ct., July 25, 2012

Developmental Rights/Covenants Enforcement: The owner of recreational facilities within a subdivision established an access easement over the homeowners association’s private roads, created for its customers and employees. [Read more]

Owner Not Entitled to Examine Election Ballots

Sigel v. The Monarch Condominium Association, Inc., No. W2011-01150-COA-R3-CV, Tenn. App. Ct., Jan. 29, 2012

Association Operations: A Tennessee appeals court upheld a lower court’s ruling that a unit owner, who was a candidate for the association board, was not entitled to audit the ballots cast in an election of the condominium association’s board of directors. [Read more]


Private Road Isn’t Public Property Solely by Public Use

Dykes v. Friends of the C.C.C. Road, No. 101630, Va. Supr. Ct., Jan. 13, 2012

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: The Virginia Supreme Court ruled that the county government’s recognition of the public’s long and continuous use of a rural road located on private property did not create a public right-of-way. [Read more]

Association Not Authorized to Levy Punitive Fines

Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority v. Shadowood Condominium Association, No. CL-2010-13282, Va. Cir. Ct., May 12, 2011

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement/Developmental Rights: A Virginia court held that a condominium association could not exceed its limited authority to levy assessments for any purpose unrelated to maintaining or operating the common elements. [Read more]

Board Gets Limited Common Elements Control when Developer’s Last Unit Sells

In re: Tarragon Corporation, No. 09-10555 (DHS), Adv. Pro. No.: 10-01618 (DHS), U.S. Bankr. Ct., Dist. N.J., March 13, 2012

Assessments/Covenants Enforcement: A New Jersey bankruptcy court held that a condominium association held the right to assign and collect fees for storage bins as condominium limited common elements subsequent to the developer’s sale of its last unit. [Read more]

Marina Bulkhead Not Part of Condominium Common Area

Inland Harbor Homeowners Association, Inc. v. St. Josephs Marina, LLC, No. COA11-715, N.C. App. Ct., March 6, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: A North Carolina appeals court determined that a condominium association did not own a bulkhead constructed as a border between two adjacent tracts of land. [Read more]

Playground Doesn’t Violate Zoning Regulations

Mountain Brook Association, Inc. v. Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Wallingford, No. AC31617, Conn. App. Ct., Feb. 7, 2012

State and Local Legislation and Regulations: A Connecticut appeals court ruled that children’s recreational equipment erected on limited common areas adjacent to individual condominium units did not violate the town’s zoning regulations. [Read more]

Owner Not Liable for Assessments for Cable TV Service

River Park House Owners Association v. Crumley, No. 1105 C.D. 2011, No. 1179 C.D. 2011, Pa. Commw. Ct., 03-06295-19-1, June 4, 2012

Association Operations: A Pennsylvania appeals court determined that a condominium association exceeded its authority by entering into a contract for cable television services and levying assessments against unit owners to cover the cost. [Read more]

Owner Entitled to Setoff Counterclaim Because Association Didn’t Maintain Common Elements

Spanish Court Two Condominium Association v. Carlson, No. 2-11-0473, Ill. App. Ct., June 27, 2012

Powers of the Association/Covenants Enforcement/State and Local Legislation and Regulations: An Illinois appeals court ruled that a unit owner was entitled to plead affirmative defenses in response to a condominium association’s lawsuit against the owner for failing to pay assessments because the association failed to repair and maintain the common elements. [Read more]

Owner Can’t Rent Condo in Excess of Established Limits

Town Houses at Bonnet Shores Condominium Association v. Langlois, No. 2011-181-Appeal, R. I. Supr. Ct., June 22, 2012

Covenants Enforcement: A Rhode Island appeals court ruled that a unit owner was barred by the declaration from entering into more than two lease agreements for his unit in a single calendar year. [Read more]

Comments are closed.