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Problem Boards What to Do When Your Board Breaks the Rules

A condominium, cooperative, or homeowners’ association elects a board for a specific purpose: to navigate the ins and outs of association management on a day-to-day basis. In fact, the board has an inflexible fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of the community as a whole. Inflexible! 

Surely this means that boards consistently stay on the side of good, advocating for residents, and promoting neighborly well-being, right? Well, in short: no. Sadly, humans are wildly fallible. Having sampled even a morsel of power, some find themselves starving for more. And other less malicious folks simply make mistakes, and rather than correct them, keep on stumbling down a wrong path. 

Once a board crosses over to the dark side, it can mean serious consequences for not only its members, but every owner or shareholder in residence. Infighting, backstabbing, loss of funds, declining property values, and even legal consequences may well ensue should the ship not be righted.

As Henry A. Goodman, a principal with Goodman, Shapiro & Lombardi, LLC,  a law firm that has offices in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, puts it, “in any organization, things can go wrong; either by virtue of error in judgment, human frailty or even corruption of one sort or another.”

Therefore, it’s imperative that both boards and residents be aware of the reasons and signs that an operation has gone bad, in order to avoid the former and correct the latter as quickly as possible. 

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5 Comments

  • Geraldine (Geri) Kay on Friday, July 12, 2019 9:53 AM
    Does the Ombudsperson act, regarding complaints require a written response, marked final determination, apply to all complaints? Meaning owner about another owner, breaking rules and/or Board/Association operating outside of all government and condo documents. I know the act clearly states the Ombudsperson can only assist in the latter but it does not state any exceptions regarding written response marked final determination. Please clarify this as we need transparency In the handling of complaints, at least for the one making complaint to know the board is acting fairly. Please help me get the correct interpretation. Thank you. Geri Kay
  • When the board of directors of a condo association and the hired management company are blatantly ignoring Illinois Condo Act/Law, who do you report that to? Who enforces the Act/Law?
  • Please help. Our condo Board just approved a bonus for a retired manger.It seems that according to Section 718.115 that they cannot do this! They have no discretionary funds & it is not in budget! They said they can do what they want!
  • Pres & Sec. 14 yrs worked very hard accomplished so much stood our ground honest always followed by laws. Few people very difficult threats angry attacks but held together with no arrests just restraining letters & a lot of no's. During our roofs finally being done so proud to get it, my wife had a tragedy last summer lived & waited a year to get critical surgery ---same dates of Roofs. We came home in middle of project & our Tres. of year & half was in a fit of anger took it out on my wife me & the. foreman. Three weeks of the biggest mess ended with the building with 2 couples problem couples started a whole new HOA while we were trying to finish roofs. Bad motives & we were voted out because my wife's health issues but she stood strong & the Treas had his non member girl friend step in as a lawyer. We got lawyers the minute we knew but this gang worked hard & lied. We are not recognized as members & we have lots of friends but we are all so shocked. No one is talking because we told them we got a lawyer. It's complicated but we are innocent & they got wind we were moving went behind our back & hijacked the HOA.
  • So last month I was charged 5times my the normal rate and it’s due to the jo carrols negligence but no one can help me because there a Co op and there not regulated by the state who do I call or who can help me Example normal rate .36cents a therm Last months bill was 1.50 a therm plus .36 plus taxe Prior month bill 330 New bill 929.32