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HOA notify me a hearing due to my tenant's violation. My…

HOA notify me a...

HOA notify me a hearing due to my tenant's violation. My tenant said HOA is harassing her, however HOA does not allow tenants to attend the hearing. I live far away and can't go to hearing. What should I do?

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?

Nothing yet

Lawyer's Assistant: Where is the property located?

Moreno Valley, CA

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

There hearing is because one of neighbor reported my tenants physical violence to HOA. It's actually an argument between neighbor to neighbor about parking lot. My tenant is 65 years old senior with disability.

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Answered in 1 minute by:
2/13/2018
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 8,413
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
Verified

Hello! I am a licensed attorney, admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here for more info) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today. Because I want to provide you with the most accurate answer possible, do you mind if I take a moment to review your question?

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only.

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
Sure, please take your time

Great, thank you! Bear with me a moment while I review…

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I'm sorry to hear about this situation. So, this isn't uncommon that tenants are not allowed to attend hearings; however, you may have some rights under the laws of contract to coerce the HOA to let your tenant attend in your place.

First, if proxies are allowed to attend these meetings, then you should designate your tenant as a proxy and have them attend the meeting in your place.

Second, if that isn't possible, then you could argue with the HOA that because your tenant is a third party beneficiary to your contract with the HOA and because their rights are going to be impacted by a decision with the HOA, contract law allows them to be in the same standing as you would be as an owner. A failure to do so could be a breach of contract.

The other thing that you could suggest is something like a simple telephonic or video conference. Skype or FaceTime are free and easy ways for people to participate at a distance. This might be a good resolution and something that won't require too much effort.

I'm very sorry about your situation.

What other questions did you have for me today?

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
I can attached HOA notice to you if you want to take a look

Sure thing.

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
My tenants complained that HOA was picking on her. This is the 5th warning letter we received. This time she was argued with neighbor about handicap parking lot. They both yelled to each other. We don't know what's really going on, how can we defense for our self?

The facts are going to be the biggest thing here. If you have the facts on your side, then you'll be in great shape. Why were they arguing about the handicap spot?

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
I attached notice, would you be able to see?
Customer reply replied 10 days ago
What is proxy ?

Ok, I see the notice, thank you. So, a proxy is just someone who is standing in for another. Sometimes, a board of director at a company may have a proxy who stands in for them to take a vote. For example, Mark Cuban likely has proxies across the country because of how many companies he has ownership in. Your HOA may allow for proxies so see if you can get your tenant to be designated as a proxy to attend.

Otherwise, you may have to work it out with the HOA to find out if you can attend over the phone instead. I'm sorry you're having to deal with this.

What other questions did you have for me regarding this?

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
They don't allow proxy. Can I hire a property manager to attend hearing? Based on the notice, my tenant was accused violence, but she said it was just an arguments. The neighbor said a lots of bad thing to her as well. How shall we defend in this case?

You know, I'm not sure if you can hire the property manager to attend. My recommendation is to talk to your tenant about what happened and get their side of the story. If they didn't say anything remotely like what was said or if they have evidence that the other party incited this argument, use that. Create a timeline of the events and I would even recommend getting an affidavit (sworn statement) from witnesses that maybe witnessed the event as well and ask them to participate or present their statements to the board as proof.

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
You mentioned about" contract law allows them to be in the same standing as you would be as an owner. A failure to do so could be a breach of contract." What kind of contract law you mean? I want to request at least my tenant be there as 3rd party

I see what you mean. So if a party is a "third party beneficiary" meaning that if they are an intended beneficiary of the contract that you have with the HOA, then they would have the same standing as you would in this situation. If they have to abide by HOA rules and covenants as a condition of living on the premises, then they should be entitled to the same rights as you would as an owner.

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
I don't have any contract with HOA. We only have lease agreement. As you mentioned, since her right will be impacted by hearing, is there any law about personal right can allow her attend?

I understand. So, there isn't anything in the Davis-Stirling Act (HOA law) about this matter specifically. This is just the common law understanding of contract law. You could still just tell the tenant to go to the hearing and see how it works out. If they have an issue with it, they'll tell the tenant, or they may just ignore the HOA rules and just go forward with the meeting since it may be too difficult to try to drag you there.

How else can I help today?

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
I heard about mediation of disputes. But I check CC&R and couldn't find anything about it. I we failed hearing, can I request mediation of dispute? How to do that?

How you do it depends on whether it's in your CC&R's, but if it's not in there, then you can just send them a simple email asking if they can mediate this dispute with you. Nothing fancy.

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One little known, but very effective tool that lawyers use when there isn’t a law that they can rely on to support their position is called principled negotiation. All this means is that you are looking to get something done on the basis of principles, even if you can’t find a law to support you. It takes the anxiety out of dealing with the other side because you’re focused on the facts, not each other.

Here are some simple steps you can follow:

  1. Figure out what the other side’s interests are (saving money, saving time, etc.?);

  2. Think about what your interests are (saving money, saving time, etc.?);

  3. Come up with 2 to 3 reasonable and objective ways to solve the problem;

  4. Present it to the other side;

  5. If the other side rejects, ask them, “Is there a reason why you do not feel it is necessary to negotiate?”

Of course, these are just building blocks to get the other party to help solve the dispute. Believe me when I say that good lawyers use this technique all the time to keep things out of court. You’ll find that it is very effective even with the most stubborn of individuals.

So, you may be able to give them some options like if the tenant gets upset, they will email you first and describe the situation or they will talk to someone in the management office about their problems before yelling at another resident, for example.

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Customer reply replied 10 days ago
Thanks for your advice

It's my pleasure. Best of luck.

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