I-Team: Homeowners Hammered with HOA Arbitration Fees - KLAS-TV Channel 8 News Las VegasIn July of last year, a dispute over a budget ratification meeting went to non-binding arbitration under the Nevada Real Estate Division. It's a mandatory first step before going to court. Friedrich lost, and to the victor went the spoils. He was ordered to pay $22,000 in arbitration and attorneys fees. "I was expecting the worst, and the worst came true," he said.
Friedrich responded with a lawsuit challenging the arbitrator's authority to impose attorney's fees. It is a common practice among arbitrators selected by the Real Estate Division. Records obtained by the I-Team reveal a dozen recent awards in excess of $10,000 against homeowners. Some awards were as high as $20,000.
Fred Pilot sent this along, which we are talking about even though it happened in Vegas. This is a big issue. The whole idea of ADR is to cut costs. If lawyers can make five figures off it, courtesy of the "arbitrators," it makes you wonder if the process is just another lawyer-driven arm of the industry.