OK, so you were incautious enough to buy a house in an HOA neighborhood. Now you realize you’re about to get sued for some offense against a member, or even non-member.
Concerned owners, of course, need to communicate with their neighbors about how much they’re going to lose in this lawsuit. Those HOA do-gooders have just handed out some brochures to get all the lawsuit victims on board.
Oops! Those HOA do-gooders have just lost their attorney-client privilege. All privileged documents now have to be turned over to the suing attorney, all legal strategies, all incredibly personal information that might have used to defend the HOA against the suit.
Across the country each day, thousands of homeowners are discovering that their neighbors have almost complete power over how they live their private lives. And tens of thousands of homeowners are having second thoughts about their HOA “investments.”
One out of many disputes is typical and involves homeowners Chris and Lavina Marmo of the Glenmont Commons Homeowners Association in Parsippany, NJ. The HOA warned its residents about a series of smash and grab robberies in the neighborhoods townhomes. Chris and Lavina purchased some wrought iron doors to install on their back patio where all the breakins are occuring.
Wrong choice. Glenmont Commons said the security gates were illegal and the couple was going to face daily fines and possible lawsuit. The HOA won’t even compromise or try to find reasonable common ground.
The Las Vegas Review Journal reports that 14 more people have taken plea bargains in the FBI’s HOA corruption investigation. That brings the total to 24. This four year investigation has taken way too long, far longer than most. But after its bumpy start, federal agents really started homing in on the fraudsters who’ve cheated so many Las Vegas homeowners and stolen their home equity, costing them their life savings and their homes.
The real tragedy of winding this investigation up early is that hundreds of homeowners who lost their homes will sit and wonder, “what to do?” They’ve been cheated of their entire life savings. But they don’t know who to contact to try to get it back.