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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 33250
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
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The head of our homeowners association is telling us we need

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The head of our homeowner's association is telling us we need to pay $1200, he claims we caused damaged to the road when we had a retaining wall put in. His work truck (1 ton) drove to our house and dropped off stones. He drove a bobcat with treads on our property (not the street) to move the stones. He drove down the street in the morning to do the work and then drove back up the street when he left in the evening, for four days. He ate lunch here on most days and when he did leave he drove with the young man who was helping him in a car. He says he is going to put a lien on our house if we do not pay. The streets have been in poor condition for quite some time. We have not seen bids to fix the road. We asked for a bank statement showing the balance of our association. He sent us a document typed in word, not an actual bank statement. He is asking only 1 other neighbor to pay for the road but did not send them a certified letter saying they would have a lien put on their property. He claims when they had a pool put it they caused damage. Another neighbor who has had probably over a 100 loads of huge rocks and concrete dumb into his yard to back fill the property has not been asked. Can he just ask for certain amounts from people? How can he prove the truck we had parked at our house caused damage. There are trucks that go up and down the road that have nothing to do with us, the truck we had at our house just parked at our home.

Dwayne B. :

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification.

Dwayne B. :

What an HOA can and cannot do is limited by both the law and their documents of formation.

Dwayne B. :

There is no law that supports what they are doing so their ability to "put a lien" and assess damages to you will depend on whether their documents allow them to do so and will set forth the process.

Dwayne B. :

Regardless of what the documents say you can always sue and challenge their assessment of the damages. They will be hard pressed to prove that your worker caused the damage.

Customer:

Would I find this information in the by laws of our subdivision?

Dwayne B. :

Yes, it should be in the HOA by laws.

Dwayne B. :

You may want to consider getting a local lawyer to send them a letter stating that you will sue if they place a lien.

Customer:

Would you recommend that we have a lawyer put together this type of letter rather than ourselves? How costly is it to do this? We are trying to weigh our options. He wants $1200.00, we know we did not cause the damage but getting an hiring a lawyer may cost more than the $1200.00 We are fearful he will come after us later and ask for more.

Customer:

can you recommend a lawyer in the st. louis, Mo area. Jefferson County, MO area?

Dwayne B. :

Yes, get a lawyer to do it. Just the letter shouldn't be much, if anything.

Dwayne B. :

No, we can't give specific referrals but just look for someone local that has a general practice.

Dwayne B. :

Many lawyers will write letters like this for just goodwill.

Dwayne B. :

But it should be under $100 even if the charge you.

Dwayne B. :

And if you have to sue you can recover your attorney's fees from the HOA.

Customer:

Ok, thank you.

Dwayne B. :

You're very welcome. Anything else I can assist with before I exit to help others?

Customer:

should we send him a letter in the mean time to say we will have someone contact him soon to prevent him from going forward with the lien?

Dwayne B. :

No, it would be better just to have the lawyer do it. If he files the lien then it will be an act of bad faith on their part.

Customer:

ok thank you. that is all. Have a good evening.

Dwayne B. :

Best wishes to you and please don't forget to leave a Positive Rating (of course I’d suggest Excellent!) so I get credit for my work.

Dwayne B. :

I'll exit now to help someone else.

Dwayne B. and 5 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Thank you very much for the Positive Rating. Please come back and visit us if you have any new questions and feel free to ask for me by placing “FOR DWAYNE B” in the subject line or as the first words of your question and I will pick up as soon as I see it.

Also, I’d ask you to consider issuing a high rating (9-10) when you receive your customer satisfaction survey as that ensures I can continue to assist people in this category.