OPPOSE HP157 – Protect Homeowners Right to Repair for Construction Defects

Thursday, February 16, 2017 | posted by Mindy Knudsen 5:13 PM

 

 

 

The Utah Legislature introduced a bill (H.B. 157) that will create insurmountable challenges for homeowners associations and condominiums to bring a legitimate legal action against a developer for any reason; including, construction deficiencies.

The bill is scheduled for a hearing by the House Business and Labor Committee tomorrow morning, Friday, February 17 at 8:00 a.m.  ACT NOW – contact Members of the Committee now and ask them to OPPOSE H.B. 157 – It strips homeowners of their right to justice.

Rep.  R. Curt Webb, Chair (801) 538-1029 curtwebb@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Scott Sandall, Vice Chair (435) 279-7551 ssandall@le.utah.gov
Rep. Stewart Barlow (801) 538-1029 sbarlow@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Adam Gardiner (385) 290-5966 adamgardiner@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Carol Moss (801) 647-8764 csmoss@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Jeremy Peterson (801) 390-1480 jeremyapeterson@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Val Peterson (801) 224-4473 vpeterson@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Elizabeth Weight (801) 538-1029 elizabethweight@le.utah.gov
Rep.  John Westwood (435) 590-1467 jwestwood@le.utah.gov
Rep.  Brad Wilson (801) 425-1028 bradwilson@le.utah.gov

 

Please send this to others who may be impacted by this bad legislation and encourage them to contact the committee.

If this bill passes, the association will never be able to file a legitimate lawsuit against a developer.

Specifically, H.B. 157 says:

An association may not bring a legal action against a developer unless all of these requirements are met:

An association may not bring a legal action against a developer or his agents, (whoever  that is) unless all of these requirements are met:

1.      The legal action is approved, by written vote, by more than 51% of the owners in the community.  The Non-Profit Act already sets the standard for a business of the member at a majority of a quorum.  (The only exceptions to this is where and HOA is amending its Governing Documents (constitution) and selling off property (because an HOA is not selling property in the ordinary course of business).  Perhaps setting a quorum requirement at 51% and then a majority vote of that heightened quorum requirement).

2.      Imposes an assessment on all owners of 10% of the estimated cost, including experts, etc., of resolving the legal action, estimated by an attorney. (The HOA is already strapped with having to make repairs to mitigate damages.  Why is the victim, not the perpetrator of the problem, required to establish a trust fund).

3.      Provides each resident with written notice of the contemplated legal action and a legal opinion related to the legal action regarding the likelihood of success, the estimated cost of the legal action and a written assessment of the likely impact of the unit owners ability to obtain financing.

4.      The association first must give a reasonable time to cure.  What is that reasonable time – 6 months, 1 year, etc?  To what standard must the repair be made to?  Must the HOA accept a subpar repair?

5.         What happens to the statute of limitations/repose during this period before an HOA can bring suit?  We were told this substitute bill would include a staying of the statute of limitations/repose, it does not.  This may kill a claim simply because the above hurdles cannot be met prior to the running of the period of limitations.

6.         The CAI-LAC has always vetted proposed legislation for months, if not years, in advance of introduction as a bill with realtors, developers, contractors, and others.  The sponsors of this bill have flatly refused an invitation for similar fair play.

7.         Does a developer owning lots or units get to self-servingly vote against bringing suit?

These requirements are nearly impossible to meet by an association.  Please.  Contact the committee members today and ask them to OPPOSE H.B. 157 – it strips homeowners of their rights to justice.

Thank you for your support.

 



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