Author Archives: Kevin Hirzel

MCL 559.148: How to relocate unit boundaries under the Michigan Condominium Act

Michigan condominium associations and co-owners should be aware that the boundaries of condominium units are not necessarily fixed and may be changed provided that certain requirements are satisfied under the Michigan Condominium Act, MCL 559.101, et seq.  By way of example, a single co-owner may purchase adjoining condominium units in a traditional attached condominium and desire to relocate the boundaries

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Court rules that the Michigan Condominium Act permits bylaws to allow for an Association to recover attorney’s fees for defending a lawsuit

In Stadler v Fontainebleau Condominiums Association, unpublished opinion of the Court of Appeals, issued April 11, 2019 (Docket No. 343303), the Michigan Court of Appeals held that the plain language of the condominium bylaws permitted the condominium association to recover attorney’s fees and costs for successfully defending a co-owner’s lawsuit.  The court further held that the condominium bylaws were enforceable

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HOA violates the Fair Housing Act by denying a service animal in the clubhouse

In Sanzaro v Ardiente Homeowners Association, et. al., Docket No. 2:11-CV0-1143-RFB-CWH, 2019 WL 1049380 (D Nev, March 5, 2019), a federal court imposed a judgment of $350,000 in compensatory damages, $285,000 in punitive damages and awarded the plaintiffs attorney’s fees and costs against their homeowners association.  Based upon the facts of the case, the court determined that the homeowners association

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Avoiding Religious Discrimination Claims in Condominiums and HOA’s

Overview of Religious Discrimination under the Fair Housing Act The Federal Fair Housing Act (“FHA”), 42 U.S.C. §3601, et. seq. prohibits a condominium association or homeowners’ association from discriminating against a potential purchaser or an owner based upon religious beliefs.  42 U.S.C. §3604 provides in pertinent part: As made applicable by section 3603 of this title and except as exempted

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Michigan Court upholds condo association fines for unauthorized wind turbine and generator

In Oak Valley Estates Homeowners Association v Georgetta Livingstone, Unpublished Opinion of the Michigan Court of Appeals, Docket No. 338292 (January 22, 2019), the Michigan Court of Appeals upheld a monetary judgment in favor of a condominium association, for fines and attorney’s fees and costs, after granting an injunction requiring that a co-owner remove solar panels, a wind turbine and

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Amendment to the Marketable Record Title Act puts Michigan restrictive covenants at risk

On December 31, 2018, SB 671 was enacted into law, via 2018 PA 572, in order to amend the Michigan Marketable Record Title Act. SB 671 was a lame duck bill that may have drastic consequences for Michigan condominiums and homeowners’ associations in the future.  Based on the amendment to the Michigan Marketable Record Title Act, in certain circumstances, Michigan

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Legal marijuana: How will it impact Michigan condominium associations?

Michigan became the 10th state to legalize the recreational use of marijuana when voters approved Proposal 1 and enacted the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act (the “Act”) on November 6, 2018. The highlights of the Act are as follows: A person that is at least 21 years or older may possess or consume marijuana. A person may possess

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