May 31, 2024

WUCIOA Will Apply to All Washington State Community Associations in 2028

Several laws relating to Washington condominium and homeowners asociations were recently approved. The most important of them states that the Washington State Common Interest Ownership Act ("WUCIOA") will automatically apply to all such community associations beginning on January 1, 2028. This comprehensive law contains many new provisions governing associations' internal affairs. You can review the full law here

Association boards should consider consulting with a qualified attorney to learn about their legal obligations under WUCIOA. They should also consider amending their associations' governing documents to bring them into accordance with WUCIOA.

April 1, 2024

Celebrating My Office's Fifteen-Year Anniversary!

It is hard to believe that I opened my law office fifteen years ago today. It was an exciting day, but it was also a terrifying one. Would the office succeed? I am so thankful that the answer has turned out to be a resounding yes! I look forward to providing my present and future clients with quality legal services for many years to come.       

February 29, 2024

Court of Appeals Resolves Dispute Between Competing Community Association Boards

There was recently litigation to determine which of two competing boards of directors of a community association had the right to access the association’s bank accounts. One of the litigants originally served on the association’s board as an appointed director and president. He and the other eight appointed directors failed to hold a timely election as required by the association’s bylaws. A small group of community members formed an election committee and collected signatures from 70 percent of the association’s members demanding that the board hold an election. The appointed board refused to hold an election, so the election committee organized and held a special election. The association’s members ultimately removed seven of the eight appointed directors and elected a new board. The original president contested the election. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of the association. The original president then appealed that summary judgment, but it was upheld on appeal and he was ordered to pay the association’s appellate attorney fees.

January 16, 2024

WA Court of Appeals Rules in Favor of Association's Covenant Enforcement Action

The Washington Court of Appeals recently affirmed a trial court’s decision that a community association properly exercised its authority to enforce protective covenants requiring buildings to present a finished external appearance within one year and requiring members to keep their properties free of clutter and other unsightly structures and conditions. The Court noted that the property owner failed to install permanent roofing on his house and barn for over one year without good cause and kept piles of construction materials in places that were visible from the road. The Court concluded that the owner’s attempts to invalidate the enforcement action lacked merit and that the association had the right to remedy the covenant violations at issue. The owner was also required to pay the association’s attorney fees.

Enforcing governing documents sometimes requires litigation, and the owners in question usually attack their community association’s enforcement procedures both in general and as applied to them. Association boards that work with a qualified attorney can ensure that their enforcement procedures and actions are likely to survive such scrutiny.    

December 29, 2023

Looking Forward to 2024!

As a new year begins, I look forward to tackling the questions, challenges, and innovations that it will bring. I am humbled that so many condominium and homeowners associations have placed their trust in me. I will continue to represent their interests and guide their boards to the best of my ability.