Barker Martin

Condo-HOA Blog

Dog Days of Summer

With the mercury hitting record highs this week, I look out my office window and dream of jumping into a nice cool pool. As a community association attorney, my brain automatically shifts from recreation to work mode. I recently helped a client update their community pool rules and thought this would be a good opportunity to highlight potential pitfalls for associations attempting to regulate summer time activities.

Due to strict anti-discrimination laws—both federal, state and local—it is imperative for community association boards of directors and managers to be aware that seemingly innocuous rules regulating use of common areas such as pools, playgrounds, fitness facilities and even streets, can unintentionally create serious legal liability.

The following are a few examples of rules that could cause legal problems for an association:

  • Children under the age of 8 years old are not allowed to use the playground equipment without adult supervision.
  • No children in diapers can use the pool.
  • No person under the age of 16 is allowed in the fitness center.
  • No dogs allowed in the park.
  • Children’s toys and bikes may not be left in a yard or in a driveway overnight.

In today’s legal environment, sensible and well-intentioned rules can still violate laws and create liability for a condominium or homeowner association. To ensure you do not accidentally wade into the deep end of the pool, contact one of the attorneys at Barker Martin to assist your association draft rules restricting common areas or facilities.