“As for what legally constitutes an open meeting, condominium associations in Illinois can look to the Illinois General Not for Profit Corporation Act. Section 108.15 of that Act specifically permits board members to participate by telephone conference so long as all parties can be heard by all in attendance. This authority, however, may be stricken by express provisions to the contrary in the association’s bylaws. For purposes of a quorum, directors properly participating by telephone conference are counted as being in attendance at the meeting.
“We generally counsel association boards to use telephone conference meetings as sparingly as possible and to limit the participation by directors in that format as much as possible so as to avoid resentment of the ownership. A director that regularly cannot attend meetings in person should reconsider serving in that capacity. Owners should be able to see and hear the directors in their deliberations. Remote participation cuts down on that transparency and can lead to miscommunication, suspicions and other negative fallout.”
“While the question posed here does not specifically inquire about email communications, given the quickly evolving nature of technology and communication methods, I wish to extend this response to address that issue as well. Because correspondence by email, text and other digital communication modes cannot be heard by attendees, these methods of communication are not permitted for purposes of meetings under the Not for Profit Corporation Act. Meetings held using these formats do not comply with the open meeting requirements of the I llinois Condominium Property Act.”