Who Regulates California HOAs and COAs?
Property management companies like HOAs are heavily regulated in California by multiple agencies, laws and statutes. To understand HOA law, it’s important to understand their regulatory agencies.
California Department of Real Estate
The California Department of Real Estate doesn’t just regulate real estate brokers, it also regulates property management companies if they engage in real estate activities. This agency makes sure that HOAs are following all laws and regulations like keeping trust accounts and following the state’s complex fair housing laws.
California Civil Rights Department - Fair Employment and Housing
The Civil Rights Department exists to enforce state and federal laws that prohibit discrimination. It’s not just landlords that have to follow fair housing laws. HOAs must also follow all fair housing laws.
California Department of Consumer Affairs
This agency oversees the Contractors State License Board. Since property management companies usually hire contractors and all contractors must be licensed, this agency also has an impact on HOAs.
HOA board members can be accused of fraud and corruption. While sitting on the board of a HOA is often an unpaid position, there are plenty of cases brought against board members for fraud related to these positions. Often, these cases involve embezzlement of HOA funds, HOA election fraud, and kickback schemes.
Failure To Repair
Both HOAs and people who live in managed communities have their own obligations to keep the community safe and looking nice. So, when one party drops the ball or refuses to keep up with their end of the bargain, breach of contract issues and sometime negligence lawsuits can come up.
Discrimination And Harassment
When an HOA or COA conducts business, they must do it in a professional and fair way that doesn’t discriminate. Some people accuse HOAs of selectively enforcing CC&Rs, when they are supposed to be the same for everyone. People often have different definitions of these terms, but a seasoned lawyer can fight for you in court.
Common Area Disputes
Homeowners’ CC&Rs usually explain exactly how disputes involving common areas must be handled, but the sheer complexity of CC&Rs can often lead to lawsuits.
Let’s face it, neighbors don’t always get along. Sometimes, the HOA must step in with disputes between neighbors, but even HOAs have limits to what they can do to resolve neighbor disputes. Frequently, lawyers are consulted by everyone involved.
Davis-Stirling Act Violations
The Davis-Stirling Act governs all HOAs in the State of California. When HOAs are accused of charging excessive fines or not following proper procedures, for example, this complicated statute is often on the homeowner’s side. If an issue falls under this statute, all parties usually hire lawyers.
When To Hire An HOA Attorney
Many people consult with lawyers at the first sign of an HOA or COA dispute. Since association disputes get heated and complicated quickly, it’s understandable.
Anyone involved in an HOA dispute should seek guidance from an experienced lawyer. Especially in the last couple of decades, statutes and laws regarding these communities have become incredibly complicated.
All HOAs and COAs need an attorney to turn to and homeowners often will too. HOAs and COAs should have a lawyer on retainer at all times. Homeowners should at least consult with a lawyer at the first sign of trouble.
Do You Need A California HOA Lawyer?
LloydWinter, P.C. is dedicated to helping our clients in their most urgent time of need. If you are facing a lawsuit or need an experienced firm to get you what you legally deserve, we can fight for you.
We are a full-service California law firm in the heart of the Central Valley. We offer free consultations, so contact us today so we can get started on your case as soon as possible.
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