The Community Associations Institute (CAI) found that 54.6 million people lived in private associations in 2005-as opposed to only 9.6 million 25 years prior. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that these residences are becoming increasingly popular, creating the need for an effective Homeowners’ Association (HOA). While the intention of HOA’s is to serve their communities and manage the property, disagreements are inevitable. Especially in such a litigious society, claims resulting from an array of issues can be brought against your HOA. In order to combat these perils, ensure you are equipped with a comprehensive Los Angeles HOA Insurance Policy to mitigate risk and cover financial losses. With that said, here are some common lawsuits that HOA’s face and how to prevent the claims.
Claims of Negligence
Residents of HOA’s have the right to expect that the HOA will complete their duties reasonably and with proper care. Therefore, if a resident were to be injured as a result of the HOA’s negligent acts, they can sue. This means tripping over a sprinkler head, falling on damaged stairs, slipping on slippery sidewalks, and more.
For these reasons, ensure that all maintenance and repairs are completed immediately. HOA members should follow-up with residents and determine whether or not the problem was solved in order to reduce further liability.
Failure to Defend Against Crime
Law Firm Hindman Sanchez states that homeowner rights in this area arise out of the foreseeability of criminal acts in the community and whether the association has acted with due care in attempting to reduce the likelihood of such acts.; the fact that the crime occurs inside an owner’s unit does not relieve the association from liability where the foreseeability of the crime arises out of a failure to provide reasonable safety measures in the common areas.
HOA’s should keep common areas well-lit, and require key access to public areas to promote resident safety.
HOA Breach of Contract
This means that the terms agreed upon by the residents to by carried out by the HOA are neglected. These include, but are not limited to, maintaining common areas, failure to landscape, mismanagement of money, and failure to make repairs.
All rules and obligations of the HOA need to be clearly written and understood by the board of directors to make sure nothing slips through the cracks.
Homeowners may bring suit against their HOA for unauthorized entry into their unit. The unit must only be entered for repairs and in the event of an emergency.
HOA’s should require written consent and authorization for entry into any unit. This way, claims for trespassing will cease to exist in your communities.
At Scott Litman Insurance Agency, we are dedicated to protecting HOA’s like yours. We have a unique understanding of the industry and the common risk exposures that you face in your daily operations. In fact, we find that 90% of the policies we review are missing coverages that violate the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&R), exposing the board, HOA and management to lawsuits– which is why our comprehensive policies are tailored to meet your specific needs at competitive prices. For more information about our products, contact our experts today at (855) 999-4505, or fill out our online form.