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It's really more of an HOA officers question, can you help…

Customer Question
It's really more of...

It's really more of an HOA officers question, can you help me with this?

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

Nothing has been started so far. We wanted to elect our officers so we had control and not them.

Lawyer's Assistant: Where is the property located?

Shenandoah Drive in Ardmore

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

We want to know if we elect our own officers, the board would/could be sued if any accident happens in common places???

Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Real Estate Law
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Answered in 11 minutes by:
3/23/2018
Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago
Sean K
Sean K, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 961
Experience: Attorney/Member in Private Law Firm
Verified

Hi, I’m Sean and I will be assisting you as an expert today. I’m an attorney with more than 20 years of experience. It is my goal to provide a solid overview of your situation. Whether the analysis is good or bad as to your matter, I want to make sure you understand any points you need and that you have options to better address the questions you have. If I am able, I will also provide you with some resources. Please note that the system, independent from me, may offer a phone call. You are not obligated to engage in a phone call, but I am happy to speak if you desire. This is completely up to you.

The answer is that potentially yes; however, there are a variety of insurance policies available to homeowner associations that are meant to address just this. Given the litigious society in which we live, if is always a good idea to have policies in place. For instance, there should be a general liability policy on the common areas anyway and with the officers, it is common practice to have a policy on them as well so they don't run into any issue.

Now, would the board be sued? It is not automatic, but knowing attorneys like I do, the general approach is to name everyone you can find to make sure someone with money is in the equation and then as need be let them out of the suit. The good thing about insurance policies, is if the suit is within the scope of the coverage, the insurance company has a duty to defend the action which means they will provide an attorney related to the insurance coverage.

Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. There is no specific course of action is proposed and no attorney-client relationship or privilege formed within this conversation.

If you have any follow up questions it would be my pleasure to answer them. As experts we only get credit for the time and effort we spend on our answers if you rate us positively - 5 stars is definitely appreciated but not required! There is no cost associated with you rating me and you can still ask follow up questions after rating me and I will respond.

One final point, there may be a delay between your question and my answer; this is because I'm either not at my computer or helping someone else but rest assured, if you ask, I will provide an answer. Thank you again.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
does it change everything if I told you that the Declaration of covenants, condition and restrictions covering us Shenandoah Ridge is an LLC?
Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago

So your HOA is already set up as an LLC?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
it was filed at the court on 9/8/15
Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago

So if the HOA is an LLC, that will go a great deal of the way towards limiting liability. It would still be a typical attorney move to name the HOA and the individual officers. But if there is an LLC and everyone always acts within the scope of their roles as an officer then there is an added level of protection there.

Now, that all having been said, because I spend all of my time with attorneys, I am still a fan of insurance policies as it is a nice safeguard when things happen that are outside of your control.

That all having been said, you are in good position for protection.

As to the original question - would/could be sued - since you have no control over who would be drafting the suit, the answer is that it is absolutely possible.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
it's possible but since there is a LLC would you be an officer on the board?
Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago

Correct, there would be the LLC over the HOA, but there could be a board with elected members.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Oops since there is a LLC the chances are very good that the officers would not be involved in a law suit?
Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago

The chance would never be zero since you would be dependent on someone else making that decision, but given the price of officer's insurance, the risk is not large. And almost every HOA has a board of directors so it is a balanced risk that many take. You just have to know what to prepare for. You have in part already done that.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thank you so much for your help! Now I have to undue the damage that one lady has done!!
Thank you so much again, you have a blessed weekend.
Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago

You have a great weekend as well and 5 star reviews are always appreciated.

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Real Estate Lawyer: Sean K, Lawyer replied 4 months ago

Wanted to follow up and see if there are any other questions that I can assist you with? If you would, please take a moment and rate me 5 starts ( of course if you are happy with my service) I like to ask as the ratings are how we are evaluated on the site.

Thanks again!

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