So with things ready to ease next week, the question on many HOA board minds is whether it is time to let residents lose in the pool. Here we cover a few things you need to consider and where you might stand if you were pursued for not keeping the general areas clean enough.
What if we are sued for allegedly not keeping the communal areas clean?
Should such a claim arise, it is possible that the HOA board will be covered by the D&O policy duty to defend should the HOA be pursued for failure to follow CDC guidelines or failure to wear masks for example. However, it really depends on the nature of the case and the extent of the allegations and litigation. Therefore, it is advisable to ensure that all guidelines are adhered to and that any contractors are also aware of the requirements. They should only carry out any cleaning to the standards or guidelines recommended by CDC, including cleaning at the intervals suggested and that they work wearing the correct protective gear, masks etc. It should be made very clear, that they understand the seriousness of ensuring that areas are maintained to CDC guidelines. It is also important to ensure that residents are aware of the risks and the need to follow CDC guidelines as well as any rules imposed by the HOA.
CDC website should be 1 of your go tos
Keep up to date with advice on the CDC website for all the latest government guidelines and updates, as this will give you the best information on how to implement further directions within your HOA.
In addition to any rules you may set out for the residents, always remind them to take precautions such as washing their hands and advise them to self-isolate if they develop any symptoms.
We have also covered more info about opening other communal areas and particular things to consider in our blog here.
Free resources and info:
There are a number of webinars that have been produced on the condo Associate Institute website here, facilitated by CA Attorneys and offered free of charge. Check out the CAI website if you haven’t already.
Check in with your HOA attorney
Of course, it is prudent to see what your own HOA attorney advises too, these are unprecedented times. They are best placed to give you solid advice on what your HOA should do in terms of reopening facilities and how they should be maintained to minimise the risk of litigation.
If you have any questions about your current policy and how the situation affects you, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us directly for further information.