OPINION: Another option for HOAs, residents

“When established HOA processes cannot come to a satisfactory solution for either party, there are other options. The first is through lawsuit and the other is arbitration through the Arizona Department of Real Estate. (“Conflict resolution options available,” Sun City Independent, Aug. 22, 2018).

On 4/11/18, the Governor signed April 11, 2018 House Besolution-2238 on Administrative Decision (aka Chevron deference) review scope into law. This bill allows any appeal to a decision from an administrative law judge to be considered on all aspect of the law without deference to the decision of the administrative law judge.

Impact: “Glass Half Full” — Ensures that individuals and businesses that appeal unjust agency decisions will have their cases reviewed fairly and independently by the courts, without deference to the agency’s own interpretation of the law. It directs courts to treat these cases the same as any other case, without favoring the government.

Impact: “Glass Half Empty” — The passing of HB-2238 in that HOA homeowners seeking to resolve issues with their HOAs in an affordable manner via the Arizona Department of Real Estate administrative hearing process appear to be the losers here and the HOA boards and self-proclaimed HOA attorneys as the winners.

With this new statute, HOA attorneys acting on behalf of an HOA board are more likely the ones to press to have an administrative law judge’s decision rendered in favor of an HOA residential property owner taken to the Superior Court level rather than an HOA residential property owner doing the same since typically the residential property owner has limited finances and limited time to pursue a Superior Court legal action against their HOA.

Sam Paparazzo


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