Author Archives: Stephen W. Hansen

New Retainer Plan Offer For Medium-Sized And Smaller Associations

Previously our firm has provided legal fee retainer plans only to our larger HOA and COA Association clients. We are now pleased to offer a new retainer program that smaller Associations may find attractive. This plan is designed to make legal advice and related services readily available and more affordable for smaller and medium-sized Associations. …read more

Statutory Requirements RE HOA Association Meeting Minutes

Beginning in 2014 HOAs must now by law (RCW 64.38.035) “make available to each owner of record for examination and copying minutes from the previous Association meeting not more than sixty (60) days after the meeting.” Thus, minutes must be generated and must be available for all property owners to inspect within the 60-day period …read more

BEWARE: A Legal Challenge To Condominium Declaration (“CCRs”) Amendments Will Likely Fail If Not Commenced Within 1 Year

A recent Washington Supreme Court Case, Bilanko v. Barclay Court Owners Association, Wn.2d (2016) makes it clear that a legal challenge to an improperly adopted amendment to condominium CCRs must be brought within 1 year of the recording of the amendment. In Bilanko the Court considered an amendment to the CCRs for a condominium community …read more

**UPDATE** CAN AN ASSOCIATION AMEND ITS CCRS TO RESTRICT RENTAL OF UNITS?

In 2014 I posted a blog regarding an issue that frequently arises in Condominium and Single Family Residence (“SFR”) planned communities: Can the rental of the units/homes can be prohibited or restricted? That 2014 Blog, which you can read on this website, is still worth reading, but I wanted to highlight the ruling in a …read more

Adopting A Homeowners’ Bill Of Rights

Planned communities, whether Condominium or single-family-residence in make-up, can establish what is referred to as a “Homeowners’ Bill of Rights”. The purpose of such a Bill of Rights is to place limitations on the power of Association and its Board to dictate life styles and activities within the community and to better protect current and …read more

Association Voting Procedures For Adopting Budget And Fixing Assessments

In many Associations (both condominium and non-condominium communities) there is uncertainty, and sometimes major conflict, over the proper procedure by which annual Association budgets and assessments are adopted. The following questions arise: A. Regarding The Budget (Expenses): – Do the owners have the right to vote on the budget OR can the Board of Directors …read more

CAN AN ASSOCIATION AMEND ITS CCRS TO RESTRICT RENTAL OF UNITS?

An issue that frequently arises in Condominium and Single Family Residence (“SFR”) planned communities is whether the rental of the units/homes can be prohibited or restricted. While there are still some unanswered questions regarding this issue in the State of Washington, the following legal principles should provide some helpful guidance: 1. In General. Any new …read more

Legal Responsibilities of Association Board Members & Their Potential Liability

Board Members of community Associations, just like corporate directors, are held to a legal standard of care in their conduct and decisions while serving on the Board. This standard of care applies in relation to the Association Members whom they represent. You will sometimes hear this standard described as a “fiduciary duty” (1). That description, …read more

Associations Should Be Incorporated

The vast majority of Associations are incorporated as nonprofit corporations. There are some Associations, however, that are not incorporated. This may be due to oversight or may be intentional in the case of some single-family residence Associations (“HOAs”) and some pre-1990 condominium Associations (“COAs”). COAs formed after 1990 are required by state law to be …read more

Is There A Statute Of Limitations Applicable To Addressing Violations Of CCRs?

I have Association clients whose (usually newer) Board members have decided to enforce their CCRs to resolve longstanding violations. They have asked me whether there is a “Statute Of Limitations” that might bar covenant enforcement action after a certain number of years have passed. While there is a 6-year Statute Of Limitations from date of …read more