Get 1 year of free community web site hosting from Community123.com!
Friday, December 03, 2021











HOATalk is a free service of Community123.com:

Easy to use website tools to help your board
Only members have access to all features.
Click here to join HOATalk for Free! Members click here to login and access all features.
Subject: No annual meeting and election arranged by the HOA for more than 2 years
Prev Next
Please login to post a reply (click Member Login on the menu).
Author Messages
KamA
(Texas)

Posts:7


11/15/2021 9:48 PM  
The President (Mrs. Patricia) of our HOA Board (3 members) in Texas is maintaining our community in such a bad way that several homeowners already sold their houses. She is maintaining her President position for more than 12 years. The other 2 Board Members and the Manager (Mrs. Erica; appointed by the management company) support all her decisions. The annual HOA fee is higher than other communities nearby, and the President increased the fee several times and wants to increase it every year. We don’t understand where does our money go. The HOA fee should be more than sufficient to maintain the community; however, they did not do maintenance work properly for many years resulting the fence and other things look ugly and broken. We do not trust the Balance Sheet we receive before the annual meeting and the Manager does not explain it clearly although we requested her several times. The majority of the homeowners are trying to remove the President for the last 4 years but have not been successful yet. They are not arranging the annual meeting for more than 2 years, so the terms of the 3 Board positions expired. I would like your opinions how to handle this situation.
Texas law requires property owners' associations to hold annual meetings of their members. If the board fails to call one, an owner may demand via certified mail that a meeting be held within 30 days of the demand. We contacted Erica via e-mail to arrange the annual meeting and election many times, but she ignores our request as the President realized that she and the other 2 Board Members will not be elected by the homeowners. We would highly appreciate if anybody can suggest us how we can force Erica (there is no HOA Board for more than a year) to arrange the annual meeting and election? Can Erica legally maintain our community without a Board?
According to Tex. Prop. Code § 209.014, if the board still fails to call a meeting, at least three members can form an election committee and call a special member meeting for the sole purpose of electing a new board. We have formed a five members election committee. Please inform us the step-by-step procedure to move forward in order to arrange the election. We have to follow legal procedure as the Patricia and Erica will use our HOA money to stop our activity by an HOA attorney.
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/16/2021 12:18 AM  
Posted By KamA on 11/15/2021 9:48 PM

Texas law requires property owners' associations to hold annual meetings of their members. If the board fails to call one, an owner may demand via certified mail that a meeting be held within 30 days of the demand.

We contacted Erica via e-mail to arrange the annual meeting and election many times, but she ignores our request . . .




Kam,

Sorry to hear about your issues. Please note that the very first thing you should do is identify the proper procedures and follow them to the letter. Failure to follow proper procedures can result in a waste of time.

For example, based on what you posted, you failed to follow procedures. Per your post, the statute specifies certified mail. You sent an email. They are not the same thing and anyone can claim they never received the email. The reason for certified mail is to have proof the board or managing agent actually received the request.



The procedures to hold a special meeting should be outlined in your governing documents. Typically, this requires a petition signed by members to hold a special meeting for a specific purpose. This petition is then sent to the board and the board has x days to respond. If the board fails to hold the meeting, then the committee may call a meeting which must follow all proper noticing to the membership. Verify that this procedure is what is written in your governing documents.

Again, failure to follow proper procedure will result in a waste of time and energy.


Your petition should have the following on each page (verify the percentage needed identified in your governing docs and correct the x% to reflect what your Association requires):

PURPOSE OF SPECIAL MEETING: The undersigned members representing x% or more of the Association hereby petition the board of directors set the earliest reasonable date for a special membership meeting for removing the entire board and electing a new board in the event the recall is successful.

The petition should show a signature along with the name printed and address of the member.
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/16/2021 12:25 AM  
Some research material:


Property Owners' Associations - Meetings and Voting per TX law library

COVID-19 Presents Unique Issues for Community Associations as there may have been reasons why meetings were not called.

TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/16/2021 12:39 AM  
Also please note the actual requirements for demanding a meeting.
From the statute [emphasis added]:


The owner's demand must be made in writing and sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the registered agent of the property owners' association and to the association at the address for the association according to the most recently filed management certificate. A copy of the notice must be sent to each property owner who is a member of the association.


Again, if you did not actually follow the above procedure the board didn't have to honor your request.


Expected costs:

$ 7.00 Certified letter to registered agent
$ 7.00 Certified letter to Association
$ 58.00 Stamps for Copies to owners (100 lots)
$ 8.00 Paper (1 ream)
$ 12.00 Envelopes (box of 100 business)
$ 30.00 Ink Cartridge

Total: $ 122.00

Estimated time:

40 min trip to store
40 min trip to post office
30 min write letter and print (103 copies)
30 min address envelopes
30 min Stuff envelopes, seal and stamp

approx 3 hours (does not include time to research what needs to be done)
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11659


11/16/2021 2:50 PM  
Kam

Complaining here is not going to get you any where. If you have issues with the BOD, then you need to mount a campaign to replace them. It is not easy but it can be done. Remind me, does TX allow proxies? If yes, the task becomes easier as in gather proxies. If not, the task is tougher as you have to get people out to vote.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11659


11/16/2021 3:37 PM  
Posted By JohnC46 on 11/16/2021 2:50 PM
Kam

Complaining here is not going to get you any where. If you have issues with the BOD, then you need to mount a campaign to replace them. It is not easy but it can be done. Remind me, does TX allow proxies? If yes, the task becomes easier as in gather proxies. If not, the task is tougher as you have to get people out to vote.



I Googles it:

Texas law requires property owners' associations to allow members to vote by absentee ballot or proxy. Please note that a vote cast in person supersedes an absentee ballot — if the member decides to attend a meeting to vote in person, their absentee ballot may not be counted.
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/16/2021 4:13 PM  
John,

If you reread the original post, you should see that Kam has taken action.

The post states that there is support to elect new board members.
The post states the board hasn't held annual elections to allow this to happen.
Kam did sent a demand email for an election (but failed to follow proper procedure - so the board ignored it).
Kam has gathered support and formed a committee and is now looking for the procedure to hold an election.



Kam,

I would suggest that you send the demand letter as required by statute (certified to registered agent, certified to board, copies via first class mail to all members) and see what the board does. Perhaps the committee can share the cost and all (if willing) should sign the letter.
MaxB4
(California)

Posts:1593


11/16/2021 4:21 PM  
Posted By TimB4 on 11/16/2021 4:13 PM
John,

If you reread the original post, you should see that Kam has taken action.

The post states that there is support to elect new board members.
The post states the board hasn't held annual elections to allow this to happen.
Kam did sent a demand email for an election (but failed to follow proper procedure - so the board ignored it).
Kam has gathered support and formed a committee and is now looking for the procedure to hold an election.



Kam,

I would suggest that you send the demand letter as required by statute (certified to registered agent, certified to board, copies via first class mail to all members) and see what the board does. Perhaps the committee can share the cost and all (if willing) should sign the letter.



Who pays for the election?
BenA2
(Texas)

Posts:1104


11/16/2021 5:03 PM  
It sounds like you are on the right track. The problem is that if the current board/president are not following the law now then they may just ignore your election. What happens if you elect a new board and no one recognizes it. If that happens, I think your only recourse is to go to court.

I would start by attending the next board meeting and address the board with these questions. If they do not cooperate then I would contact the association attorney by writing a letter and addressing all of your concerns. Contrary to popular belief, the attorney works for the association members, not the board. There is no guarantee the attorney will talk to you, since the board still manages the association, but if he/she has information that you are forming an election committee it will probably push them into some action.

Unless you can get some cooperation from the current board or attorney, your best bet is to consult with an attorney.

BillH10
(Texas)

Posts:783


11/16/2021 6:53 PM  
Max

The Association pays for the election. Owners may petition for a Special Meeting of the Association but it is the President of the Association who must convene the meeting and anything else which is connected to it. Since the Association convenes the meeting, regardless of the 'trigger', the Association bears the expense.

In this case, based on what I have read from the OP, the election would be as required in the documents of the Association. In that case, the Association would bear the expense, especially since it appears no proper elections have been held for 24 months or so.

Sometimes I wish we in Texas had an Ombudsperson or HOA/Condo oversight agency which has the teeth to wade into an apparent mess like this one.
MaxB4
(California)

Posts:1593


11/16/2021 7:18 PM  
Posted By BillH10 on 11/16/2021 6:53 PM
Max

The Association pays for the election. Owners may petition for a Special Meeting of the Association but it is the President of the Association who must convene the meeting and anything else which is connected to it. Since the Association convenes the meeting, regardless of the 'trigger', the Association bears the expense.

In this case, based on what I have read from the OP, the election would be as required in the documents of the Association. In that case, the Association would bear the expense, especially since it appears no proper elections have been held for 24 months or so.

Sometimes I wish we in Texas had an Ombudsperson or HOA/Condo oversight agency which has the teeth to wade into an apparent mess like this one.



I know the Association is supposed to pay, but what happens when the President refuses to communicate with their owners. Sure, people can follow all the necessary steps to call for a meeting and an election, but when push comes to shove, then what?

California has no governmental oversight of the approximately 60,000 HOA's in the state. Small Claims is a joke and to file a Civil suit with Superior Court, make sure you have $20K to start with.
KamA
(Texas)

Posts:7


11/16/2021 10:07 PM  
Thanks so much for your suggestions. Can Erica (HOA manager) legally maintain our community without a Board; if you have any idea, please let me know?
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:4284


11/17/2021 3:36 AM  
Probably not. The property manager works at the board's direction, so the most he/she might be able to do is pay bills this current board has already authorized (such as they are).

Which reminds me - if there's more than one board member, where are THEY in this??? Usually the board officers are appointed from among themselves while the homeowners elect the board. That would mean everyone has one vote, so the rest of the board should be able to remove this president from the position.

That could be the quickest way to address this - pressure the rest of the board to make the change. They won't be able to remove her from the board itself - that would call to the homeowners. If everyone's upset as you say, there shouldn't be a problem encouraging people to get off their duff and vote. Goodness knows it appears they've let this go on for two years and it'll still continue unless they take action.

That said, if the other board members have let this go, you may as well push to recall the entire lot, so do pay close attention to Tim's suggestions. Hopefully you have other neighbors to help you. You'll need to have people ready to step up and take over - and you may need to be one of them do hang on to your knickers - you're in for an interesting ride. Good luck!
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/17/2021 4:11 AM  
Kam,

Read the posting rules.

One of the big ones is no mentioning of names.
Just use titles.
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/17/2021 4:35 AM  
expecting your association is keeping things up to date, you can identify who the registered agent is from the Texas Dept of State site:

https://www.sos.state.tx.us/corp/sosda/index.shtml

or from the Texas comptroller site:

https://mycpa.cpa.state.tx.us/coa/
AugustinD


Posts:1901


11/17/2021 5:01 AM  
Posted By KamA on 11/16/2021 10:07 PM
Thanks so much for your suggestions. Can Erica (HOA manager) legally maintain our community without a Board; if you have any idea, please let me know?
No. Statutes require a board. If per chance the entire board happens to resign, then the manager likely can continue as long as an election is run as soon as possible. Until a new board is elected, the manager needs to tread quite softly when she/he makes decisions that by law, are board decisions.
AugustinD


Posts:1901


11/17/2021 5:08 AM  
Posted By AugustinD on 11/17/2021 5:01 AM
Posted By KamA on 11/16/2021 10:07 PM
Thanks so much for your suggestions. Can Erica (HOA manager) legally maintain our community without a Board; if you have any idea, please let me know?
No. Statutes require a board. If per chance the entire board happens to resign, then the manager likely can continue as long as an election is run as soon as possible. Until a new board is elected, the manager needs to tread quite softly when she/he makes decisions that by law, are board decisions.
KamA, I expect you may have been asking, "Can a manager run a HOA if the Board is not giving direction?" A board has a legal right to delegate enormous responsibility to a manager. While one might think the manager is operating without board oversight, if a board is present, chances are the manager is not violating any law and simply doing what the board wants or expects.
BenA2
(Texas)

Posts:1104


11/17/2021 5:53 AM  
Posted By KamA on 11/16/2021 10:07 PM
Thanks so much for your suggestions. Can Erica (HOA manager) legally maintain our community without a Board; if you have any idea, please let me know?



The manager could continue to perform her duties temporarily without a board but she cannot make decisions that are the responsibility of the board. Do you still have a treasurer. Is there someone who can pay the manager? I assume she does not have the authority to pay herself.

In an ideal situation, if the entire board resigned, the manager would assist the homeowners in holding elections. As you probably already know, there are no rules for many unusual situations so you may have to wing it a little.
BenA2
(Texas)

Posts:1104


11/17/2021 5:56 AM  
Posted By TimB4 on 11/17/2021 4:35 AM
expecting your association is keeping things up to date, you can identify who the registered agent is from the Texas Dept of State site:

https://www.sos.state.tx.us/corp/sosda/index.shtml

or from the Texas comptroller site:

https://mycpa.cpa.state.tx.us/coa/



This is true for businesses. For HOAs that information is found on the management certificate that is filed with the county.
AugustinD


Posts:1901


11/17/2021 6:35 AM  
Posted By BenA2 on 11/17/2021 5:56 AM
Posted By TimB4 on 11/17/2021 4:35 AM
expecting your association is keeping things up to date, you can identify who the registered agent is from the Texas Dept of State site:

https://www.sos.state.tx.us/corp/sosda/index.shtml

or from the Texas comptroller site:

https://mycpa.cpa.state.tx.us/coa/



This is true for businesses. For HOAs that information is found on the management certificate that is filed with the county.
I have used state sites for quite awhile to find the name of registered agents. I just checked the second site TimB4 linked above (the mycpa... site). This site has the name and address of the registered agent of a Texas condo I know pretty well at this point. I think as long as the HOA/COA is a corporation (and they almost always are), at least one of the sites TimB4 will have the name of the registered agent online and way easy to access.
SH7
(Texas)

Posts:3


11/29/2021 4:41 PM  
Is this applicable also for neighborhoods that are still in the "development period"? Our neighborhood has around 10 houses (maybe less) left out of 200+, but the developer hasn't transferred control. Can this method be used to replace the current board of directors, provided we follow the proper method of notice, forming the election committee, etc?



Posted By TimB4 on 11/16/2021 12:39 AM
Also please note the actual requirements for demanding a meeting.
From the statute [emphasis added]:


The owner's demand must be made in writing and sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the registered agent of the property owners' association and to the association at the address for the association according to the most recently filed management certificate. A copy of the notice must be sent to each property owner who is a member of the association.


Again, if you did not actually follow the above procedure the board didn't have to honor your request.


Expected costs:

$ 7.00 Certified letter to registered agent
$ 7.00 Certified letter to Association
$ 58.00 Stamps for Copies to owners (100 lots)
$ 8.00 Paper (1 ream)
$ 12.00 Envelopes (box of 100 business)
$ 30.00 Ink Cartridge

Total: $ 122.00

Estimated time:

40 min trip to store
40 min trip to post office
30 min write letter and print (103 copies)
30 min address envelopes
30 min Stuff envelopes, seal and stamp

approx 3 hours (does not include time to research what needs to be done)



AugustinD


Posts:1901


11/29/2021 4:58 PM  
Posted By SH7 on 11/29/2021 4:41 PM
Is this applicable also for neighborhoods that are still in the "development period"? Our neighborhood has around 10 houses (maybe less) left out of 200+, but the developer hasn't transferred control. Can this method be used to replace the current board of directors, provided we follow the proper method of notice, forming the election committee, etc?
SH7, have your read the covenants carefully and determined whether the developer/declarant legally is entitled to remain in control?

Usually certain events have to happen before the developer/declarant is allowed to transfer control. Transferring control is a big deal and should be done with great care.

Feel free to quote here exactly what your HOA's covenants say about transferring control.
SH7
(Texas)

Posts:3


11/29/2021 5:14 PM  
Yes, I have read them. They give pretty broad control to the Developer to not ever transfer control, if he doesn't want to (attached screen shots). He's raising dues by 10%, in addition to having a special assessment assigned in 2021 and 2022. No information was provided to homeowners about the increase or what the special assessments will go towards. Some common areas aren't well maintained, and the consensus seems to be we would be better off with someone else running the HOA. If my understanding is correct, the Developer doesn't own any lots in the neighborhood any longer, as all have been purchased by builders, and are almost fully sold.
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


11/30/2021 4:39 AM  
Posted By SH7 on 11/29/2021 4:41 PM
Is this applicable also for neighborhoods that are still in the "development period"? Our neighborhood has around 10 houses (maybe less) left out of 200+, but the developer hasn't transferred control. Can this method be used to replace the current board of directors, provided we follow the proper method of notice, forming the election committee, etc?





I would expect yes. Keep in mind that the developer may have the controlling votes in a meeting. Therefore, read your governing docs to see how the vote break down works while under development control. You could use this to call a meeting, but if the developer has control of the votes, nothing will likely change.
SH7
(Texas)

Posts:3


11/30/2021 6:14 AM  
Thanks for the reply. The developer gets 7 votes for lots he still owns, vs the 1 vote per homeowner. But my understanding is that all of the lots are owned by builders, who are separate entities from the Developer. I think we have a majority with the homeowners. I appreciate the reply!
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17841


12/01/2021 6:22 AM  
I would start by asking for a copy of the membership list.

This will confirm if your understanding of who owns the lots is accurate.
Please login to post a reply (click Member Login on the menu).
Forums > Homeowner Association > HOA Discussions > No annual meeting and election arranged by the HOA for more than 2 years



Only members have access to all features.
Click here to join HOATalk for Free! Members click here to login and access all features.







General Legal Notice:  The content of forum messages are from the posting member and have not been reviewed nor endorsed by HOATalk.com.  Messages posted by HOATalk or other members are for informational purposes only, are not legal or professional advice and do not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  Readers should not act upon this information without seeking professional counsel.  HOATalk is not a licensed attorney, CPA, tax advisor, financial advisor or any other licensed professional.  HOATalk accepts ads from sponsors but does not verify sponsor qualifications nor endorse/guarantee any sponsor's product or service.
Legal Notice For Messages Posted by Sponsoring Attorneys: This message has been prepared by the sponsoring attorney for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This information is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Readers of HOATalk.com should not act on this information without seeking professional counsel. Please do not send any sponsoring attorney confidential information unless you speak with the sponsoring attorney or an attorney from the sponsoring attorney’s firm and get authorization to send that information to them. If you wish to initiate possible representation, please contact an attorney in the firm of the sponsoring attorney. Sponsoring attorneys that post messages here are licensed to practice law in a specific state or states as indicated in their message signature or sponsor’s profile page. (NOTE: A ‘sponsoring attorney’ is an attorney that is a HOATalk.com official sponsor and is identified as such in the posted message or on our sponsor page.)

Copyright HOA Talk.com, A Service of Community123 LLC ( Homeowners Association Discussions )   Terms Of Use  Privacy Statement