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Effect of Expanded Jurisdiction of Virginia Court of Appeals on Community Associations

Legal Alert for Community Associations: Community associations should take notice that Virginia recently became the final state to allow civil litigants a right to appeal a circuit court ruling.  This article provides a detailed overview of these changes. Under prior law, if a party wanted to appeal a civil judgment from a circuit court, that party had to petition the Supreme Court of Virginia to ...
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2021 Legislative Changes that Impact Virginia Community Associations

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, the Virginia General Assembly had a busy 2021 session that consisted of a regular session and a subsequent special session during which it passed many different pieces of legislation that will affect community associations ...
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Don’t Be Dazed and Confused

Legalization of Marijuana and Possible Impact on Virginia Community Associations Massive legislation legalizing marijuana in Virginia became law July 1, 2021 ...
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Legal Counsel’s Two Cents on Community Association Budget Considerations

It is that time of year.  Summer vacations are in the books, schools are in session, and pumpkin spice lattes are back on tap.  These signs of Fall also mean many Virginia community associations are in budget season. Community association boards rely on their budget committees, management team, accountants, auditors, and/or reserve specialists for input to create a proposed budget.  As a supplement, there are ...
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What the Beep?! New Law Changes Community Association Treatment of Accessible Parking Requests

For Virginia community associations, requests for accessible parking to accommodate a disability come in many forms.  Requests range from asking for a designated handicap parking space to a parking space closer to one’s residence to curb cuts to reconfiguring and/or restriping a parking space.  These requests involve a change in a rule or policy of the association and/or a physical change or alteration to property ...
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Plugging In: Electric Vehicle Charging Stations in Virginia Community Associations

The past decade has seen an explosion in the popularity of electric vehicles. All expectations are that this popularity will continue to grow.  There are many makes and models of electric vehicles, and they can be classified as either battery electric vehicles (“BEVs”) or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (“PHEVs”)—both of which need to be charged by plugging into an outlet or charging station ...
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2021 Legislative Changes Impacting Virginia Community Associations

Updated June 4, 2021* July 1 means new laws become effective in Virginia.  The 2021 legislative session and special sessions were busy and resulted in sweeping changes—many of which impact Virginia community associations.  Of significance to property owners’ associations (“POAs”) and condominium associations are the following laws that become effective July 1, 2021: Use of Electronic Means for Meetings and Voting (HB1816/SB1183) Any meeting of ...
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Community Associations Legal Alerts: Ending of Certain Public Health Restrictions Effective May 28, 2021

Effective May 28, 2021, certain public health restrictions that have been in place for well over a year will end.  Executive Order Number 79 (“EO79”) terminates the Seventh Amended Executive Order Number 72 and Order of Public Health Emergency Nine (“EO72”) on May 28, 2021.  EO79 can be found here and EO72 can be found here. For Virginia community associations this means that amenities, such ...
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Spring Cleaning For Virginia Community Associations Top 10 Policies and Procedures

The pandemic that took hold in 2020 created uncertainty and required community associations to adapt to new norms and its policies and procedures.  The country looked forward to a new year with new hope.  A new year usually brings resolutions.  With Spring around the corner and the vaccine rollout providing a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, it is a perfect time to ...
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Sit, Stay, And Learn: Assistance Animal And Virginia Common Interest Communities

Virginia common interest communities (property owners’ associations, condominium associations, cooperatives, and time-shares (individually, “CIC”, and collectively, “CICs”)), are subject to the federal Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 (“FHA”) and the Virginia Fair Housing Law (“VFHL”) ...
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Virginia Circuit Court Upholds Rule Requiring Residents To Sign Assumption Of Risk Form As A Condition To Using Certain Common Areas During The Pandemic

A Charlottesville Circuit Court held that a rule promulgated by a Virginia property owners’ association requiring residents to sign an assumption of the risk form prior to using certain common areas was reasonable ...
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Court Upholds Mandatory Assumption Of COVID-19 Risk Form

A Virginia court has issued a ruling that’s welcome news to community associations struggling with how to keep owners happy while reducing the risk of COVID-19 ...
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Hindsight is 2020 – A Look Back at Impact of COVID-19 on Community Associations Focuses Efforts Moving Forward

Since March 2020, society has learned how to navigate through and adjust to many upheavals and changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This is certainly true for community associations conducting business and carrying out routine operations. Looking back on what was an extraordinary year due to the pandemic provides clarity for Virginia community associations about where to focus in 2021 and the future.  Governmental Orders ...
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A Quick Refresher on the Association Complaint Procedure

In July 2020, I was slated to co-present at the Virginia Leadership Retreat (“VLR”) on a program titled It’s the Association Feud! Surveys of the Ombudsman’s Determinations of Final Adverse Decisions to Complaint, After Complaint…After Complaint. In preparation for our presentation, my co-presenter and I spent many months reviewing and summarizing the 200-plus determinations issued by the Virginia Common Interest Community Ombudsman ...
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Circuit Court Upholds Rule Requiring Residents to Sign Assumption of Risk Form As a Condition to Using Certain Common Areas During the Pandemic

A Charlottesville Circuit Court held that a rule promulgated by a Virginia property owners’ association requiring residents to sign an assumption of the risk form prior to using certain common areas was reasonable.  See Norman v. Foxchase Owners’ Assoc., Inc., Case No. CL20-1481 (Albemarle Cnty., Oct. 30, 2020).  From what can be gleaned from a relatively short, but instructive, letter opinion, the case involved the ...
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Circuit Court Upholds Rule Requiring Residents to Sign Assumption of Risk Form As a Condition to Using Certain Common Areas During the Pandemic

A Charlottesville Circuit Court held that a rule promulgated by a Virginia property owners’ association requiring residents to sign an assumption of the risk form prior to using certain common areas was reasonable.  See Norman v. Foxchase Owners’ Assoc., Inc., Case No. CL20-1481 (Albemarle Cnty., Oct. 30, 2020).  From what can be gleaned from a relatively short, but instructive, letter opinion, the case involved the ...
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Understanding the Legal Aspects of Privacy in the Age of Smart Phones and Residential Security Cameras

This article is published in Southeastern Virginia Community Associations Institute’s (“SEVA-CAI”) Currents newsmagazine (Quarter 2 edition)  and is re-printed with permission. With most people in modern society having smart phones that have cameras and video recording capability coupled with the soaring popularity of residential security cameras, one may wonder to what extent does one have a right of privacy should their image and/or behavior be ...
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Technology for Community Associations in the Midst of Coronavirus

There is nothing like a global pandemic, complete with Gubernatorial Executive Orders to stay home, social distance and limit gatherings and CDC health recommendations to provide laser focus on how community associations can utilize technology. While the spotlight is on the present crisis, community associations may find that it fast forwards new and improved ways of conducting business utilizing technology ...
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Impact of Executive Order 68 on Hampton Roads Community Associations

In response to increases in positive COVID-19 case counts in the Hampton Roads area, Governor Northam issued Executive Order 68 that places additional restrictions on certain cities and counties.  The jurisdictions subject to this order are:  Cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Hampton, Williamsburg, Newport News, Poquoson, James City County, and York County (collectively, the “Eastern Region”). Of importance to community associations located ...
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2020 Legislative Changes Affecting Virginia Community Associations

The 2020 legislative session was notable for a few reasons.  First, the Democrats held the majority of seats in both houses of the General Assembly for the first time in recent history.  Second, the legislature also took action to address the impacts of COVID-19, which has affected virtually every aspect of our society, including community associations.  CAI’s Virginia Legislative Action Committee monitored numerous bills on ...
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