Wrongful Death Claims – The Loss Of A Loved One

A serious injury caused by the carelessness or recklessness of another person is a terrible thing, but the untimely death of family member or loved one at the hands of negligent stranger represents a truly horrific loss and a tragedy of the very highest order. In the aftermath of such a loss, the decedent’s grieving …read more

COA Lien Foreclosure Eliminates Prior Mortgage Lien

The foreclosure of Condominium Owners Association (“COA”) assessment liens can under some circumstances remove and eliminate a prior mortgage lien. In two recent Washington State Court of Appeals decisions the Court ruled that the COAs in those cases that had foreclosed their comparatively small assessment liens against a condominium unit had the effect of eliminating …read more

How To Interpret And Understand Community Covenants (“CCRs”)

Association Boards (both Condominium and Single Family Residence communities) frequently struggle to understand the provisions of the CCRs that apply to their community.  This particularly arises in the context of regulating questionable member activities and uses and the construction of improvements on member property. The particular CCRs provision in question was likely drafted by the …read more

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