Can the HOA board prevent owners from suing?

HOA Perspectives - the Fox & Hounds of HOA Business and Politics

 By Donie Vanitzian, JD

Question: Even though our homeowner association has never had a problem with architectural guidelines or rules, board directors informed owners by letter that they’re being amended. The rewritten document speaks to “modifications, additions or improvements” but fails to define or explain those terms. It also includes this new language that I believe is exculpatory to the association:

“Each homeowner and his/her authorized agent, if any, who submits requests or plans to the board of directors for approval, agrees by reason of such submittal that no action or suit of any kind will be taken against the homeowner association, board of directors, any members or their designated representative to recover any damages.”

Can the board use a guidelines or rules agreement to prevent owners from suing?

Answer: Justices in the case of Villa Milano Homeowners Assn. vs. Il Davorge made it clear that besides an absence…

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2 Replies to “Can the HOA board prevent owners from suing?”

  1. They do not understand the basics of an association, which is run by the members, and the Executive Board, not Board of Directors, make the rules and other changes. When people understand this, there should be no lawsuits only discussions with a members vote. that how it works, in a democracy. Ole

    On Sat, Sep 5, 2015 at 7:14 PM, Independent American Communities wrote:

    > deborahgoonan posted: ” “


    1. But an HOA is not a democracy. There is no such thing as One Person, One Vote in HOAs (with the exception of some cooperatives). When a developer controls the board and retains weighted voting privileges, or when a small group of individuals controls a majority of the voting interests, that can make it impossible for the other members to vote for the change they seek and/or elect a new Board. It doesn’t matter that there are more PEOPLE who don’t like a rule or policy of the HOA — in a corporate HOA, it’s all about who holds the most voting interests.


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