The homeowners' association's (HOA) attorney represents the HOA as an entity. The HOA is separate...
HOAs often have security walls around their perimeters, and the Nevada Legislature passed a law in 2009 that requires the HOA to repair these walls when necessary. However, the law raises questions for the HOA when they need to make these repairs. An HOA lawyer can review their covenants to ensure that it is clear who is responsible and that Nevada law is followed.
The HOA Must Handle Security Wall Repairs Under Most Circumstances
The Nevada law mandated that the HOA has legal responsibility for any security wall located inside the community that borders on a common area. This is not the same thing as a wall that encloses a gated community. Instead, the wall must be inside the community. These walls are often owned by the individual property owner, and the responsibility for their maintenance can be confusing.
For the HOA, it means that they will need to increase their financial reserves in case they need to make these costly repairs. However, the homeowners are often the owners of these security walls through their deeds. Under Nevada law, it is possible that an HOA does not have to foot the bill for these repairs if the governing document states that the homeowners must pay for it themselves. The HOA also has the ability to petition the county to take over the responsibility for these walls.
The HOA May Encounter Legal Issues When Repairing Security Walls
There are numerous legal issues involved with the potential fixes. First, an HOA may need to enter onto private property to make these repairs and may need specific permission from the owner. The HOA must maintain the walls when they do not own them or the property on which they are located.
Second, the HOA may need to increase its financial reserves and its operating budget. If there are extensive necessary repairs, it could mean that the HOA must pass the expense along to all homeowners in the form of a dues increase or special assessment. This will be very controversial because the walls are not commonly owned.
Finally, the HOA must repair the damage to the walls, no matter who caused it. This could include vandals. There are also instances in which the homeowner themselves could have done the damage, and the HOA must pay for the repairs because of this law.