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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 118686
Experience:  Licensed attorney practicing landlord-tenant, land use and other real estate law and litigation.
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I belong to an HOA (Heavens Landing in Clayton, GA) and

Customer Question

I belong to an HOA (Heavens Landing in Clayton, GA) and cannot get the developer to release any information about how/where he spends the dues we pay every year. I had a potential buyer for my property (a retired real estate developer himself) who told me this information should be readily available to all home/property owners in Heavens Landing and the fact that the developer wont release it may indicate illegal use of these funds. Any thoughts?
JA: Because real estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Clayton GA Rabun County
JA: Has any paperwork been filed?
Customer: I have made several verbal requests and have an email string. A local laywer told me he needs to be sued. I am one who would prefer gentle encouragement to comply if I have the right to this info.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I have not paid the dues for the latter half of 2016 yet as I have asked for this information and told them I would pay them upon receipt. Also, the road to my property is in disrepair and I wanted that fixed as well.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Legally, these records are subjected to the public records laws and upon written request of an HOA member they must release a financial accounting or make the records available for inspection at a reasonable time. If the developer will not release the information, then your recourse is you must file a petition for declaratory judgment in court and seek to get a court order to force the developer to release the information and seek monetary damages to compensate you for the costs that you incurred in trying to get the information.
Your only way to make a "gentle approach" is to send the developer a notice stating that you are making a request for the records under O.C.G.A. § 14-3-1602, which grants members of the association a right to inspect the records. Tell him if he does not comply you will be forced to take legal action in the local courts.