Like city government, HOAs impose abusive fines and fees

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By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Housing consumer advocates have spent the past several years exposing abusive fines and fees imposed by homeowners, condominium, and cooperative associations. Unfortunately, most advocacy groups ignore HOA abuse, even though it closely mirrors the behavior of some oppressive local government leaders. Local governments have long had the authority to impose fines for violations of health and safety codes. But recent trends reveal that city and county leaders are enacting Continue ReadingLike city government, HOAs impose abusive fines and fees

What do Civil Forfeiture and the 8th Amendment have to do with HOAs?

We the people Constitution

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court made its historic ruling that 8th Amendment’s protection against Excessive Fines applies to state and local governments across the country. The SCOTUS decision united all nine Justices, as well as liberal and conservative politicians and think tanks. Following this decision, one reader wrote and asked me: “Will this ruling also apply to HOA fines and home confiscations?” That’s a great question. And, as a non-attorney, Continue ReadingWhat do Civil Forfeiture and the 8th Amendment have to do with HOAs?

Can States, HOAs ignore 8th amendment of U.S. Constitution?

We the people Constitution

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Housing consumer and HOA reform advocates need to educate themselves about the national scourge of Civil Forfeiture abuse. Institute for Justice, a group of attorney that wage legal battles against Civil Forfeiture, defines Civil Forfeiture as: … a process through which police and prosecutors seize someone’s property and keep the proceeds for themselves, thus giving law enforcement an incentive to maximize profits rather than seek the neutral administration of Continue ReadingCan States, HOAs ignore 8th amendment of U.S. Constitution?

Will IJ victory in Pagedale class action lawsuit lead to protection of rights for HOA residents?

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Institute for Justice recently filed a similar federal against Doraville, Georgia Both lawsuits aimed at upholding Constitutional protections for residents Commentary By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Institute for Justice has recently scored a legal victory for victims of abusive nuisance fines and code enforcement by the small town government of Pagedale, Missouri. A similar lawsuit has also been filed against Doraville, Georgia. As referenced in the featured articles below, the profiles of behavior by Continue ReadingWill IJ victory in Pagedale class action lawsuit lead to protection of rights for HOA residents?