Saturday, November 06, 2010

Bradenton couple finds thousands of bees in their backyard

Bradenton couple finds thousands of bees in their backyard

The homeowners association said they plan to check on all the trees to make sure there aren't any more of those hives.

And a letter will likely be issued to property owners harboring giant beehives warning of daily fines if the hives remain.

Freddie Mac posts $4.1B loss for Q3 - Business -

Freddie Mac posts $4.1B loss for Q3 - Business -
And on it goes. If you want to see where the whole housing market catastrophe started, here it is.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

News Brief From Center for California Homeowner Association Law

From Marjorie Murray at CCHA:
Since we’re going to the polls today,   we thought this would be a good time to post the lawsuit brought two weeks ago by the ACLU to force a homeowner association and its property manager to keep their mitts off the HOA resident exercising his constitutional right to post political signs.

Here’s the link to the ACLU lawsuit on the CCHAL website:  Keep this link handy in case someone tells you that you can’t post a political sign during an election.

Hassling homeowners over political signs could easily happen again.  The entire association industry was opposed to the Longville bill, AB1525, when it was going through the policy committees in the California Legislature.  Here’s the list of registered opponents from the Senate analysis right before the bill went to the Governor’s desk:

OPPOSITION: (Verified  8/25/03)

Community Associations Institute, unless amended
Executive Council of Homeowners, unless amended
California Association of Community Managers

On the list are the three trade groups that collect homeowner money and then use it to lobby against homeowner rights in Sacramento – like homeowners’ right to constitutionally protected free speech.

If the trade groups want to lobby in Sacramento on behalf of their members, we absolutely support their constitutional right to political free expression.  

But we sure wish they’d quit using homeowner money in Sacramento to dismantle the Bill of Rights.  

CCHAL NewsBrief
November 2, 2010

Marjorie Murray, President
Center for California Homeowner Association Law
1305 Franklin Street, Suite 201
Oakland, California 94612

Monday, November 01, 2010

HOAs don't enjoy blanket immunity for maintenance decisions, California Court of Appeal rules

In a ruling filed filed Oct. 29 in Affan et al v. Portofino Cove Homeowners Association, G041379, the Fourth District of the California Court of Appeal overturned a trial court ruling dismissing claims brought against a condo HOA and its management company by an owner alleging the defendants breached their duty to maintain and repair the common area plumbing, causing sewage to back up into the plaintiff's unit.

The trial court dismissed the suit citing a 1999 ruling by the California Supreme Court in Lamden v. La Jolla Shores Clubdominium Homeowners Assn. (1999) 21 Cal.4th 249. In that case, the California high court applied the business judgment rule to HOAs, holding that courts are to defer to the "presumed expertise" of HOA boards when it comes to their decisions on maintaining common areas. That means these decisions by HOA boards are not subject to second guessing by the courts when owners challenge them.

But in Affan, the Court of Appeal found the HOA failed to establish the factual prerequisites for applying the deference rule. In addition, it held, since the HOA manager is not the HOA, the rule does not apply to the manager.

Here's a key excerpt from the ruling:
It is important to note the narrow scope of the Lamden rule. It is a rule of deference to the reasoned decisionmaking of homeowners association boards concerning ordinary maintenance. It does not create a blanket immunity for all the decisions and actions of a homeowners association. The Supreme Court's precise articulation of the rule makes clear that the rule of deference applies only when a homeowner sues an association over a maintenance decision that meets the enumerated criteria.
The full decision can be read here.

Team 4: Debt Collectors Accused Of Fake Courtroom, Judge - News Story - WTAE Pittsburgh

Team 4: Debt Collectors Accused Of Fake Courtroom, Judge - News Story - WTAE Pittsburgh

I expect this idea may catch on soon with the HOA/condo bill collector law firms.