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Subject: Covenants and Restrictions Expired
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Author Messages
SeanB10
(Virginia)

Posts:2


10/12/2020 10:41 AM  
Hello, We have a small Land owners Association in Virginia. We are a registered corporation in good standing with the SCC. The Deed of Dedication was written in the late 70s and is divided into two sections. Section A is the RESTRICTIVE COVENANTS which basically talks about what we can and cannot do with our land. Section B is the LOT OWNERS ASSOCIATION. At the end of Section A RESTRICTIVE COVENANTS there is a paragraph explaining that the covenants and restrictions shall run with the land and be binding until December 31, 1999, and thereafter for two successive periods of ten years. This is before Section B LOT OWNERS ASSOCIATION. My question is does the expiration of "covenants and restrictions" also mean that the lot owners association is expired? Do we still have right collect dues for the sake of maintaining our road? The road is our only common interest.

Thank you
AugustinD


Posts:4153


10/12/2020 10:59 AM  
Questions like this come up fairly often. Providing meaningful assistance is difficult without seeing the governing documents of this community. For now, I will say:

-- Covenants absolutely can have a termination date. They can and have expired for many a community.

-- Can you confirm that the plats or some other legal documents shows that the road is owned jointly by all members/shareholders of the corporation?

-- It would be best to get a copy of the Articles of Incorporation and see if they help. For example, the Articles may state that the purpose of the corporation is to maintain this road. This will provide some legal muscle to demanding (first politely asking) all owners to pitch in equally or in some appropriate, defensible proportion.

-- The Articles of Incorporation are typically on file with the state's Secretary of State, corporations division or similar.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:3275


10/12/2020 11:45 AM  
I previously lived in a 50 lot community of 5 acre tracts - in Fairfax County, VA.

The CCRs were written to expire 20 years after the developer filed in 1963. The community argued about whether they automatically extended further - the board hired an attorney who agreed with the board - and was friends with one of the original development team who still lived in the community.

The argument continued for another 10 years, during which everyone paid assessments for the private roads, entry monuments and landscaping maintenance, and a gazebo park complete with "burying grounds" from the farm that was the basis for the development.

I joined the board, and then was president - the arguing had continued then for 11 years. I formally requested the county attorney to review the case - remember, northern Virginia is pretty progressive, and some local governments are interested in the health of HOAs (more tax dollars) so it was not surprising the county attorney would review.

The verbal answer came back - "the attorney who said you have covenants still is an idiot." The written answer was slightly softer :-).

My understanding is that Virginia provided statue some years later with a "hook" that noted all covenants were still in effect if the neighborhood was incorporated AFTER a certain date (well after ours).

BUT, the deeded requirement for everyone to contribute to maintain the roads and other common areas - never any discussion about that - the county attorney agreed it was still in place as it was directly discussed in the articles, the CCRs, and the original plat.
SeanB10
(Virginia)

Posts:2


10/12/2020 11:57 AM  
Thank you for the reply. I tried to attach the Deed of Dedication but its a PDF too big.

SECTION A about Covenants doesn't mention anything about the road or dues. SECTION B does list what the dues are when they are due etc. Toward the end it does say that the streets and easements are private and shall be maintained by the lot owners.

I'll try to find the Articles of Incorporation. I couldn't find anything on the SCC website.

The document very much reads like only the Covenants expire. The Covenants section actually has some parts that are specified to be in place for perpetuity such as easements for utilities and a section about not allowing mobile or modular homes.
AugustinD


Posts:4153


10/12/2020 12:08 PM  
Posted By SeanB10 on 10/12/2020 11:57 AM
I'll try to find the Articles of Incorporation. I couldn't find anything on the SCC website.
Of the three or so times I needed the Articles of Incorporation for a certain corporation where I am (which is not Virginia), I think I always had to appear in person; pay a small fee; and within a few days the Sec of State staff would e-mail me a digital copy.

I think George's post is quite interesting. Hopefully this thread's responses will at least better prepare you for a meeting with an attorney who can comment intelligently on the situation. More preparation = less money spent on the attorney.

Thanks for excerpting what you could. The owners of this site do ask people linking attachments to remove identifying info from the attachments first.
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Forums > Homeowner Association > HOA Discussions > Covenants and Restrictions Expired



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