Homestead Exemption & Foreclosure of Association Liens

A relatively obscure Washington statute (RCW 6.13.080) now requires Homeowner Associations (“HOAs”) to mail notice to its members explaining that no “homestead exemption” will be recognized if an Association lien for unpaid assessments is foreclosed against their property. Such Homestead Exemption, which applies to the enforcement of judgments and a few other types of liens …read more

Injuries Occurring On Property Of Others – Premises Liability

A.        Common Law Classifications In the State of Washington personal injury claims resulting from unsafe or defective conditions on another’s premises (i.e., buildings, grounds and related facilities) always require consideration of the injured person’s “status” on the other person’s property.  Washington, unlike most states, still relies upon traditional, common law classifications of the injured person …read more

The Tsunami

A Harley-Davidson motorbike, washed out to sea by last year’s terrifying Tsunami, made an astonishing journey across the north Pacific from Japan, landing on a remote, Canadian beach this week. The miracle story, complete with a Tsunami-survivor owner, made headlines for one reason – it is an improbable piece of good news, even if a …read more

Association Board Meetings – Can They Be Confidential?

ASSOCIATION BOARD MEETINGS – CAN THEY BE CONFIDENTIAL? Rules and procedures relating Association Board meetings are very different than those applicable to general membership meetings.  A number issues can arise in this regard that I will address in this Memo. I.          Single Family Residence (Non-Condominium) Associations A.        The Law RCW 64.38.035 (applicable to non-condo Associations …read more

If It’s Community Property – Why do I Need a Will?

Have you ever heard of “urban myths?” Those are the stories that we’ve all heard and believe to be true, that turn out to be false. Perhaps the most persistent myth in the area of estate planning is that community property passes automatically to the surviving spouse, so husbands and wives don’t really need Wills …read more

Life Insurance Surprise

For most of us, a surprise is a good thing. For an estate planning/elder law lawyer, they are dreaded. Most people think (properly) of life insurance as a safety net for their family. Young families have gotten the message and usually protect their children by buying low-cost coverage to be sure their children are protected …read more

What Is My Injury Case Worth?

This is often one of the first questions that I am asked. I understand why my clients want to know the answer. They want to know what to expect in order to plan accordingly. Unfortunately, there is no formula for evaluating a case and it takes some work to get to the point where an …read more

Do it yourself?

There are many tools now available for self-help legal services, especially when it comes to will drafting. One popular website charges a modest fee, less than a lawyer would cost, and I’m often asked, “so why should I pay you to do what I can do myself?” We can all agree, the stakes are very …read more

Living Trust Concerns

     Do you have a large red or green binder labeled “Revocable Living Trust”? If so, you should pay attention to this post. A few years ago a handful of organizations began using a high pressure sales approach to marketing expensive trusts called “Revocable Living Trusts.” They promised to save taxes, attorneys’ fees and to …read more

Recently Passed Washington State Laws Impact Home Owner Associations

The Washington State Legislature has recently passed new legislation affecting reserve requirements both Condominium and traditional single family residence Homeowners Associations.    Overview The new legislation will require Association Boards in their annual budget summaries to provide all owners with additional information regarding reserves for future maintenance, repairs and replacement of common elements.  For example, the …read more