Court Holds Homeowners Association May Exclude A Member’s Representative From Board Meetings

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A new opinion published on June 20, 2013, holds that a homeowners association may exclude an owner’s representative from a board meeting because the representative was not “member” as defined by the association’s governing documents. In SB Liberty, LLC v. Isle Verde Association, Inc., the homeowner formed a limited liability company (“SB Liberty”) to hold title to their single-family residence. Following a dispute with their homeowners association, the homeowners, via SB Liberty, executed a power of attorney to provide their attorney with the right to attend and participate at board meetings. Following the Association’s refusal to allow the attorney to attend a board meeting SB Liberty filed a lawsuit and sought a preliminary injunction to enjoin the association from preventing the attorney from attending board meetings. In its opinion, the California Court of Appeal found that the association’s governing documents provided that only members could attend board meetings, and that an attorney could not be considered a “member” within the meaning of the governing documents. Therefore, the Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s decision denying SB Liberty’s preliminary injunction motion.