Community Associations

The novel nature of condominium ownership, specifically the transition process, affects the statute of limitations analysis. The Planned Real Estate Development Full Disclosure Act requires that the developer of a condominium staff the board of trustees of an association and control the affairs of the association until seventy-five percent of the units in the development are sold.
Continue Reading How Transition Affects the Statute of Limitations Analysis

In New Jersey, construction defect claims are subject to a six-year statute of limitations, N.J.S.A. 2A:14-1, which is subject to the discovery rule, and a separate ten-year statute of absolute repose, N.J.S.A. 2A:14-1.1, after which potential causes of action no longer exist
Continue Reading How the Discovery Rule Affects the Statute of Limitations

A Board that acts in reliance upon advice of its experts and legal professionals cannot be held liable for negligence or breach of fiduciary duty if that advice turns out to be wrong.
Continue Reading When Can Individual Association Board Members Be Held Personally Liable For Actions of the Collective Board? Part 5

When liability for any of these breaches is imposed on an individual director or trustee, the issue of indemnification arises. In New Jersey, because condominium associations are generally organized as not-for-profit corporations under the Nonprofit Corporation Act, indemnification may be available to an officer of an entity organized under this Act provided that the officer (1) “acted in good faith and in a manner which the [officer] reasonably believed to be in or not opposed to the best interests of the corporation,” and (2) “with respect to an criminal proceeding, the [officer] had no reasonable cause to believe the conduct was unlawful.”
Continue Reading When Can Individual Association Board Members Be Held Personally Liable For Actions of the Collective Board? Part 4

New Jersey courts that have considered the application of the business judgment rule have concluded that the scope of judicial review of condominium association decisions is limited to a two-pronged test: (1) whether an association’s action was authorized by statute or its own bylaws and, if so, (2) whether the action was fraudulent, self-dealing or unconscionable. Thanasoulis, supra, 110 N.J. at 655; see also Chin v. Coventry Square Condo, 270 N.J. Super. 323, 328-29, (App. Div. 1994); Siller, supra, 93 N.J. at 382; Papalexiou v. Tower West Condo, 167 N.J. Super. 516, 527 (Ch. Div. 1979).
Continue Reading When Can Individual Association Board Members Be Held Personally Liable For Actions of the Collective Board? Part 3

Since condominium associations are generally organized as non-profit corporations under N.J.S.A. 15A:1-1 et seq., the New Jersey Nonprofit Corporation Act is quite instructive on a Board member’s standard of care.
Continue Reading When Can Individual Association Board Members Be Held Personally Liable For Actions of the Collective Board? Part 2

Like directors of corporations, members of association Boards enjoy various protections for the consequences of their business decisions. Essentially, in order for a Board member to be personally liable for an act of the Board, the Plaintiff would have to prove either (1) that the Board acted without authorization from the association’s governing documents, Condominium Act or other statute; or (2) that an authorized act of the Board was fraudulent, unconscionable or resulted in self-dealing. Generally, as long as a Board member acts in good-faith and makes informed decisions, he will be protected from personal liability by operation of the business judgment rule.
Continue Reading When Can Individual Association Board Members Be Held Personally Liable For Actions of the Collective Board? Part 1

Transition is often confusing for condominium associations run by Boards populated with unit owners who are not attorneys and who have no prior experience going through the process. Upon transition of control of the condominium association’s board of directors from the sponsor-developer to the unit owners, a key responsibility of the Board is to engage the services of an engineer or architect to conduct an inspection of the common elements to determine if there are any deficiencies. One of the most important considerations for the Board in transition is spending the Association’s money wisely when it comes to engineering investigations
Continue Reading Transition By Condominium Associations: Focus of Engineering Investigation—Fiber Cement Claddings

How do engineers find this moisture damage without tearing off all of the brick and cast stone? They use moisture probes, which are inserted through the mortar joints in the brick and cast stone and into the sheathing and framing. These probes measure the amount of moisture inside the sheathing and framing.
Continue Reading Transition by Condominium Associations – Focus of Engineering Investigation – Part 2

Transition is often times a confusing issue for condominium associations run by Boards populated with unitowners who are not attorneys and who have no prior experience going through the process. Upon transition of control of the condo association board of directors from the sponsor-developer to the unitowners, a key responsibility of the Board is to engage the services of an engineer or architect to conduct an inspection of the common elements and building design to determine if there are any deficiencies.
Continue Reading Transition by Condominium Associations – Focus of Engineering Investigation