Community Associations

Summer Abstract Swimming Pool

Impact of Coronavirus on Pool Season for Community Associations

Spring is here, which means pool season is upon us.  Traditionally, this is when community associations throughout Virginia prepare for pool season.  Now, with Virginians ordered to stay home, social distance, sanitize and limit in-person gatherings through June 10, 2020, community associations may need to review their pool contracts.  Pool contracts generally involve two main parts: (1) maintenance (including pool openings and closings) and (2) ...
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Modern Houses 3

Coronavirus: Additional Consideration for Protecting Community Associations and Continuing to Operate

Since our last posting, the impact of coronavirus on community associations has become real.  Health and safety are paramount.  While Association-related matters may seem trivial compared to a worldwide health crisis and corresponding job losses, basic business and operations must continue, albeit with new considerations.  This supplements the prior article.   Membership Meetings: Use of Proxies If a community association goes forward with an annual ...
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Miniature House Decoration 2

Coronavirus: Protecting Community Associations and Continuing to Operate

It is official; there is a global pandemic. This affects everyone.  With the onslaught of cancellations, closings, quarantining, and social distancing, COVID-19 is changing how we work, live, and interact at least for the foreseeable future.  This article is intended to provide guidance to community associations about how to operate in this environment. Information. There is no shortage of information available from news agencies, CDCs, ...
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Houses

2019 Legislative Changes Affecting Community Associations

By:  Deborah M. Casey, CCAL® and Gaela Normile[1] Happy Summer!  It is hard to believe that 2019 is half over.  July 1 means new laws become effective in Virginia. During the 2019 session of the Virginia General Assembly, CAI’s Virginia Legislative Action Committee (VALAC) monitored over 75 bills that directly or indirectly impacted community associations.  Of those 75 bills, VALAC pursued 20, and, fortunately, there ...
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Justice Concept

We’ve Been Sued! We Need to Sue! What to Expect When Your Association Goes to General District Court

Community associations are not immune from being sued or having to file suit.  Community associations frequently are in court for issues such as the collection of unpaid assessments from residents, disputes with contractors, and covenant and rule enforcement. Many of these disputes are handled in the general district court of the relevant locality.  In Virginia, general district courts exclusively handle civil cases involving amounts in ...
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Deborah M. Casey Named as ‘Influential Women of Law’ for 2019

Attorney Deborah M. Casey, a Vandeventer Black AV Preeminent® rated partner and Executive Board member, will receive the Influential Woman of Law for 2019 distinction on February 18, 2019. This recognition is awarded by Virginia Lawyers Weekly as part of the inaugural class of Virginia’s leading women attorney program. “Debbie’s integrity and character are demonstrated in many areas, especially in her active role in the community by ...
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Protection Background Technology Security

Five Steps to Greater Cybersecurity Health for Community Associations

Media reports concerning cyber attacks continue to increase.  Over the past few years, some of the largest and well-known companies have been affected by data breaches. These companies have experienced millions of dollars in losses as a result.  Even a small data breach impacting only a few thousand records can expose a business to significant losses that may have a devastating impact including causing a ...
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Suburban Residential Street With Red Brick Houses

2018 Legislative Changes That Affect Community Associations

Each year an increasing number of bills affecting community associations are introduced in the Virginia General Assembly.  2018 may have been one for the record books. CAI’s Virginia Legislative Action Committee (VALAC) reviewed more than 100 bills that directly or indirectly affect Virginia community associations. Fortunately, there are only a few that passed.  The bills that passed became effective July 1, 2018.  Listed below are the ...
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Deborah M. Casey Bankruptcy Lawyer

Deborah M. Casey Selected as a 2018 Woman Leader in the Law

Vandeventer Black LLP AV® Preeminent-rated partner Deborah M. Casey was selected as a 2018 Woman Leader in the Law by The National Law Journal. Casey is a highly accomplished attorney who has also been recognized among ‘Influential Women of the Year’ by Virginia Lawyers Weekly, ‘Best Women In The Law 2017’ by Virginia Living Magazine, and ‘Women In Business’ by Inside Business. Casey continues as a Vandeventer Black Executive Board Member ...
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Copyright Law for Community Associations

A common issue that community associations encounter is the proper use of copyrighted material.  Whenever an association shows a movie or plays music at a common element/area location within the community, it most likely is using material that is protected by copyright law.  If the association has not obtained a license allowing it to use the copyrighted material, it may be subject to penalties for ...
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Top Reasons to Amend a Community Association’s Governing Documents

Whether your community’s documents are relatively new or have been recorded for several decades, this article is intended to provide a basis for determining why amendments should be considered.  Governing documents generally include the Declaration (or Master Deed for condominiums created under the Horizontal Property Act), Articles of Incorporation (for associations that are incorporated), Bylaws, Rules and Regulations, Plats, and Plans.  The governing documents may ...
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A Corporate Formality with Significant Implications – Carefully Select our Community Associations Registered Agent

Virginia law related to registered agents is deceptively simple: Every corporation authorized to transact business in Virginia (including incorporated community associations) are required to maintain a registered office and a registered agent within the state; Registered agents in Virginia have only one statutory duty – to forward to the business entity at its last known address any process, notice or demand that is served on ...
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A Corporate Formality with Significant Implications – Carefully Select our Community Associations Registered Agent

Virginia law related to registered agents is deceptively simple: Every corporation authorized to transact business in Virginia (including incorporated community associations) are required to maintain a registered office and a registered agent within the state; Registered agents in Virginia have only one statutory duty – to forward to the business entity at its last known address any process, notice or demand that is served on ...
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One Dollar Bill

Good Collection Practices Protect Lifeblood of Community Associations

Assessments are the lifeblood of every community association.  For most associations, it is the sole source of income to pay for common expenses.  Therefore, having tools and good practices to maximize collection of assessments is vital not just to survive and thrive, but to avoid unwanted special assessments and/or debt. It is the obligation of owners to pay assessments.  It is one of the characteristics ...
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Set of American Dollar Bills as Background

Bankruptcy Basics for Community Association Boards of Directors

Over the last decade, community associations (like other businesses) have been forced to navigate the “Great Recession” and continued recovery.  The “Great Recession” brought with it a significant increase in the number of personal bankruptcy filings across the country.  Even now, personal bankruptcy filings continue to impact communities and their ability to collect assessments. It is a common thought that the filing of a bankruptcy ...
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2017 VA General Assembly Update For Community Associations (Week 2)

Having concluded the second full week of the General Assembly, we’ve seen tremendous activity and efforts related to legislation affecting Virginia community associations. On the first day of session (January 11, 2017), Vandeventer Black published a 2017 Virginia Legislative Forecast (available here). And, here on day 17, many of our predictions have been accurate. As of January 27, 2017, 2,430 bills and resolutions have been ...
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The Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act (HOTMA) Update

In our inaugural issue in October, 2016, we reported that HOTMA was unanimously approved in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate and signed into law by President Obama on July 29, 2016.  The full text of the bill is available here. Among other things, HOTMA required the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to: modify its certification requirements to make recertifications substantially less burdensome than original certifications, ...
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The Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act (HOTMA) Update

In our inaugural issue in October, 2016, we reported that HOTMA was unanimously approved in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate and signed into law by President Obama on July 29, 2016.  The full text of the bill is available here. Among other things, HOTMA required the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to: modify its certification requirements to make recertifications substantially less burdensome than original certifications, ...
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2017 Virginia Legislative Forecast*

Today is the day.  At noon today (January 11, 2017) the Virginia General Assembly will be called to order and the 2017 session will begin.  As a bi-yearly, “short session,” the 2017 Session will span only 45 days and the General Assembly will consider between 2500 and 3400 bills (beginning January 11, 2017 and ending, sine die, on February 25, 2017).  In 2015, the last ...
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Choosing Association Attorney is Important Decision

Selection of association legal counsel is one of the most important decisions a community association board of directors will make.  Engaging legal counsel can have long-term implications for your community.  Getting the best possible attorney for the association will have far-reaching benefits and we want to share our experience in how a board can get the decision “right.” Experience and Specialization – Cultivating Trust and ...
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