Hello. We understand that community managers need information that is up to date and available when your Board of Directors requests it. Because of this, The Travis Law Firm believes that, by providing you with anytime access to your Association’s collections account information, you are able to help your Board make better informed decisions. In addition to anytime access of your Association’s collections account information, we are here as your source for community management legal information. We are here to assist in addressing all of your Association’s community management legal needs, from general operating questions to covenant enforcement to revising community documents and more.
We provide the legal information and partnership that you need to successfully manage your communities.
Please contact us if you have further questions or would like to discuss how we can work together.
What is the general flow of a collection case?
A collection case generally follows 5 steps:
1 – Initiate Case/ Research
2 – Mail Initial Demand Letter
3 – File Lawsuit
4 – Obtain Default Judgment
5 – Garnishment
These steps are further broken down in our collection process. At any time during the process, the delinquent homeowner can pay-off their debt in full or request a repayment agreement.
When should an Association consider filing a Lien Foreclosure Complaint?
According to A.R.S. §33-1807 and A.R.S. §33-1256, the delinquent assessments must be greater than $1,200.00 or have been delinquent for a period exceeding 12 months. Then, the Association must determine whether the first mortgage holder, whose lien is superior to that of the Association’s, has recorded a Notice of Trustee Sale. If a Notice of Trustee Sale has been recorded, the Association should work with us to determine what the risks are to proceed with the judicial foreclosure process. Finally, the Association must consider whether to proceed to a Sherriff’s Sale or just obtain a Superior Court judgment against the owner. If the Association proceeds with a Sherriff’s Sale, then the Association must be prepared to take ownership of the property, if there are no other bidders at the sale. contact us so we can assist you and your Association in every step of the Lien Foreclosure Process.
What options exist for the Association to gain compliance for a violation of the Declaration?
The Association has many different tools to use to bring a lot into compliance with the Declaration. These tools range from the Association’s issuance of violation letters and an imposition of monetary penalties pursuant to A.R.S. §33-1242 and A.R.S §33-1805, to the filing of a lawsuit in Superior Court seeking Injunctive Relief. Each case is different and warrants the appropriate response from the Association. We can send covenant enforcement demand letters, or we can file a lawsuit to collect on the monetary penalties in an effort to bring the owner into compliance by opening dialogue to correct the underlying violation(s). Contact our office to let us help you determine the most effective way for your Association to solve these types of issues.
What is the difference between monetary penalties and fines?
There is no material difference between the words “monetary penalties” and the word “fines.” The Arizona Legislature has authorized Associations to impose “monetary penalties” in A.R.S. §33-1803 and A.R.S. §33-1242, while the word “fines” is used in the municipal codes empowering a county or city to levy a fine against the property owner for code violations.
Can monetary penalties be included in the Assessment Lien or foreclosed upon?
Pursuant to A.R.S §33-1256 and A.R.S. §33-1807, monetary penalties are not part of an Association’s statutory lien. After obtaining a judgment against the owner for the monetary penalties, the Association can then record this Judgment. At that point, the judgment for the monetary penalties is a lien upon the property. The Association cannot file a lien foreclosure for the nonpayment of monetary penalties. contact us if you have any questions about monetary penalties.
What records of the Association must be provided to a member upon request?
A.R.S. §33-1258 and A.R.S. §33-1805 specify that “all financial and other records of the Association shall be made reasonably available for examination by any member or any person designated by the member in writing as the member’s representative,” except as set forth in Section B of the statute. These exceptions include attorney communication, pending or contemplated litigation, executive session minutes, documents related to “personal, health, and financial records” of individual members, employees or contracted employees and certain employee or contracted employee’s records. If you have a question regarding any written request for records, contact us to ensure your association complies with the statute.
How do I respond to a petition for the removal of a board director?
A.R.S. §33-1813 and A.R.S. §33-1243 sets forth the process to remove a director by the members. If you receive a written petition seeking the removal of a director, contact us to verify the validity of the petition. If the petition is valid, the statutes require a special meeting of the members be called and noticed within thirty (30) days of receipt of the petition. contact us for assistance with this process.
What should I do if the property tax statement seems high for the common area parcels?
Pursuant to A.R.S. §42-13404(c), we can prepare and file a Common Area Valuation Application and Request to Combine with the Assessor’s office. Upon acceptance of the application and request, the tax liability for these common areas will be greatly reduced and will remain at the reduced value as long as the parcels are owned by the Association. Our law firm can prepare and file a Notice of Claim with the Assessor’s office to recover the overpaid taxes on the common area parcels for the previous three (3) years. contact us to determine if this applies to your Association.