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I have a question as a homeowner. I have been faced with…

I have a question...

I have a question as a homeowner. I have been faced with illegal action from my HOA. Can you help>

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

I have not filed anything. I am not sure what I need to do. In the state of CA, there is a law about HOAs allowing residents the ability to charge an Electric Vehicle. I put my request in over 4 months ago and have yet to receive an answer. State law requires only 60 days. If no action or answer is given within 60 days, the request is considered approved.

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a CA lawyer about this?

No. I am trying to find one. Any recommendations?

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

That's all. Thanks for the help!

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Answered in 2 minutes by:
3/26/2018
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10,159
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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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.

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only. What specific questions did you have? I have an idea about your situation, but I don’t want to make any assumptions.

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Customer reply replied 24 days ago
I recently purchased a condo in Palm Springs, CA and drive an EV vehicle with no possible way to charge at home. I requested in writing on 12/12/17 that I have access to a place to charge my vehicle according to state law. The property manager told me to go to the local library to charge. The HOA Vice President contacted me directly to ask for my help in obtaining options to consider. I was happy to help and provided him with multiple options for the HOA to research and approve the option that worked best. I still have not heard anything from the HOA and need a charger ASAP so I no longer have to struggle to find a charger. It has been over 4 months. What do I do now? I am willing to pay for the install of a charger in my parking stall, and maintain all necessary insurance policies for it. The only hold up is that I wouldn't be able to tie it into my personal electricity and would use the property's electricity. Does electricity usage even matter at this point since the HOA has delayed for this long? What are my options? Please advise. Thanks so much.

I see. So, do they have charging stations at the HOA? Or are you just looking to charge it at home?

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Customer reply replied 24 days ago
The complex has NO option at all for me to charge. None.

I see. And just so I'm clear: you're looking to install a charging station, correct?

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Customer reply replied 24 days ago
Can I legally install my own charger in my parking stall even if it uses the common area HOA electricity (impossible to connect to my personal electric account)?Yes- I'm looking to install a station or get some action because the HOA hasn't found a solution after 4 months. State law requires only 60 days. I have been unable to charge my car at home since I moved in in NOV.
Customer reply replied 24 days ago
I've provided the HOA with multiple options to consider and research with various companies and the utility company. I'm unsure if they have even looked into it. I have yet to hear back from anyone.
Customer reply replied 24 days ago
Why did they connect me with an education attorney? I don't think you specialize in what I am asking about.

Hi, a couple of things:
1. Bear with me as I don't think I type as fast as you do so it may take me a moment to respond;

2. You can ignore the "education attorney" thing. I'm a licensed California attorney that you're on live with. The education attorney thing is just a marketing thing I suppose;

3. I'm reviewing the Civil Code to see what your remedies are so I will be with you in just a few moments.

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Ok, Cal Civil Code Section 4745 says that an HOA can impose "reasonable" restrictions on charging stations. These restrictions are void if they infringe on the ability of an electric vehicle owner(s) to charge their vehicle. If an owner makes a request in writing, they have 60 days to comply, but if they don't, then the request is deemed approved.

What this means for you is that since you have an electric vehicle, they can place reasonable restrictions, but if they haven't responded to your written request since December, then you can deem this as an acceptance.

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Customer reply replied 24 days ago
are you saying that I can simply hire my own electrician and install a station at my own expense even if it uses their electricity?

Yes. The law allows you to install it in a common area or it allows the association to do so. I'm not sure if the law expressly allows or prohibits charging stations in the home; however, if you are the one that is paying for the electricity, then there won't be a restriction on it since you're responsible for the increased energy bills. Accordingly, the answer is yes, based on what you provided, you can get it installed under the Civil Code because of the time they have waited. Be sure to check out the code's requirements regarding installation so you can be fine. You can click here for more information.

Did you have any other questions for me today that I could help you with?

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Customer reply replied 24 days ago
I will not be paying for the electricity though. It is NOT possible to have a line ran from my home to my parking spot in the complex. Therefore, I would be using the HOA electricity. Are you saying it is still ok even if I am using their electricity and not my own?

Correct. The law says that if you submit the request like you would a request for an architectural change, and they don't approve within 60 days, then it is deemed approved.

The practical solution to this is that this means you may have to consider continuing to work with the HOA regarding the specifics. It is likely that if someone just showed up and started installing they would have an issue. You may need to explain what the civil code says and also see if they can come up with reasonable rules regarding use. For example, your vehicle can only charge for a certain # of hours and you have to share the space with others. Just like the rules for any gym or pool basically. Does that make sense?

Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10,159
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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Customer reply replied 24 days ago
I am not necessarily receiving a clear answer. It seems as though you are saying this is a grey area and not providing a definitive answer. How is something legal, but yet if I do it, there may be an issue? Either I'm within my legal right to do so, or I'm not.
Customer reply replied 24 days ago
Thanks anyways. I will contact a local attorney for a clear answer.

I understand. Welcome to analyzing the law. In many cases, even if something is legal, people may try to stop others from exercising their rights or cite some other law that conflicts with the law that gives you the rights. I just want you to be clear of the practical hurdles that you may face in your legal rights.

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