Condominium & Property Owners' Association Acts; merger of developments, reformation of declaration. (HB690)

Introduced By

Del. Jimmie Massie (R-Richmond)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Condominium and Property Owners' Association Acts; merger of developments; reformation of declaration. Provides a process for the merger of two or more associations and a process for seeking judicial reformation of the declaration in both Acts. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


01/07/2014Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/08/14 14101914D
01/07/2014Referred to Committee on General Laws
01/10/2014Assigned GL sub: Subcommittee #1
01/28/2014Subcommittee recommends reporting with amendment(s) (7-Y 0-N)
01/30/2014Reported from General Laws with substitute (22-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/30/2014Committee substitute printed 14103953D-H1
02/03/2014Read first time
02/04/2014Passed by for the day
02/05/2014Passed by for the day
02/06/2014Passed by for the day
02/07/2014Read second time
02/07/2014Committee substitute rejected 14103953D-H1
02/07/2014Floor substitute printed 14104927D-H2 (Massie)
02/07/2014Substitute by Delegate Massie agreed to 14104927D-H2
02/07/2014Engrossed by House - floor substitute HB690H2
02/10/2014Read third time and passed House (99-Y 0-N)
02/10/2014VOTE: PASSAGE (99-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/11/2014Constitutional reading dispensed
02/11/2014Referred to Committee on General Laws and Technology
02/17/2014Reported from General Laws and Technology with amendments (13-Y 2-N)
02/19/2014Constitutional reading dispensed (40-Y 0-N)
02/20/2014Read third time
02/20/2014Reading of amendments waived
02/20/2014Committee amendments agreed to
02/20/2014Engrossed by Senate as amended
02/20/2014Passed Senate with amendments (34-Y 6-N)
02/21/2014Placed on Calendar
02/24/2014Senate amendments agreed to by House (99-Y 0-N)
02/24/2014VOTE: ADOPTION (99-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/26/2014Bill text as passed House and Senate (HB690ER)
02/26/2014Signed by Speaker
02/28/2014Signed by President
04/06/2014G Approved by Governor-Chapter 659 (effective 7/1/14)
04/06/2014G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0659)


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 2 clips in all, totaling 3 minutes.


YIKES! writes:

Homeowners in HOAs and Condos should be very worried about the "judicial reformation" language in this Bill.

As Delegate Massey should know, HOAs and Condos are governed by CONTRACTS called "Declarations." These Declarations have provisions for amendment. The provisions for Amendment call for a vote by the HOMEOWNERS, and this makes perfect sense because the Declaration is a crucial doucument for protecting their property rights.

As I understand Delegate Massey's bill, the following scenario is a distince possibility:

An HOA or Condo Board of Directors wants to amend their Declaration to give the Board more "rulemaking" power than the Declaration permits. They request the Homeowners to approve an amendment to the Declaration, but they don't get the required approval. (Homeowners get nervous when Boards have too much power, see?). So there's no amendment without the required Homeowner approval. That's the law NOW.

But Delegate Massey's Bill would permit the Board, under these circumstances, to just go to court and asks a Judge to unilaterally change the Declaration to whatever the Board wants. All the Board would have to do is tell the judge that there are:

"inconsistencies in the declaration that are the source of legal and other disputes pertaining to the legal rights and responsibilities of the association or individual lot owners"

This Bill will reduce the rights of Homeowners and should be defeated.

Miss Leading writes:

Based on the title of the Bill, I thought it would only apply if two HOAs or Condos merged.

But I don't think that's the case. It looks like ANY HOA or Condo Board can ask a court to amend their Declaration whether the homeowners support the change or not.

Why should courts start changing the language of private contracts?

I agree with the first post. This Bill would reduce my rights as a homeowner in an HOA. Delegate Massey should pull it and if he doesn't it should be voted down.

HOA Corporation Member writes:

This bill looks like a case of govt. interference with a private contract prohibited by both Virginia and Federal Constitutions. It's astoundingly bold and wrong. Just last year The Governor vetoed a bill deemed to interfere with the private HOA contract, so why Delegate Massie, would you introduce another such bill here?

Thank you for your consideration.

Bob writes:

I agree fully with the first post. I live in an HOA. It is my right as a property owner to have the final say (with my vote)to any changes to my HOA's Declarations. This bill would permit HOA boards to act with impunity and with zero regard to the property owners they were elected to serve.
This is a bad bill and needs to be killed. The erosion of the basic and constitutional rights of property owners must cease.

F Lee Foreclosure, Esq writes:

Dear Del. Massie:

Well, it looks like our suggestion that you slip that "Reformation" language into a Bill that looked "plain vanilla" didn't get under the radar of these pesky unit owners.

Sorry about that.

You know, every year these owners get a little more savvy about what CAI is trying to do and who we really represent.

You have the official permission of the CAI Lobby to pull the Bill. You can even tell the homeowners in your District that CAI simply slipped someting into your Bill, and that you didn't notice.

No hard feelings, right?

And don't worry. We've got lots of other things up our sleeve.

Your Pal,

F. Lee Foreclosure, Esq.
Filechurner & Foreclosure, LLP
"We make money the CAI way: from the equity in your home."

Shu Bartholomew writes:

This bill needs to be killed!

The Community Association Industry believes that homeowners are "children" incapable of knowing what is good for them. Board members, on the other hand, are their "parents" and if the board wants a power they don't have, and the homeowners choose not to give them that power, the homeowners are said to be "apathetic". Should the board fail to get an amendment approved by the owners this bill allows them to get a judge to amend the governing documents.

So much for the will of the people!

Whatever happened to the notion that the homeowners get to control what happens in the development? Is this an example of the democracy in HOAs that CAI would have us believe exists?

This is an affront and insult to every Virginia homeowner.

Delegate Massey, please have the decency to pull this bill. You are being ill advised by the HOA industry and NO, they do NOT speak for the homeowners.

Disappointed Homeowner writes:

Dear Delegates Peace, Greason, Helsel, Yancey, Hodges, Bulova, and Dance:

I'm including your names so that your constituents will know what you've done to homeowners who live in HOAs in Virginia.
Your Subcommittee has compiled the most Anti-Homeowner record I've ever seen in a single legislative session. And that's really saying something.

You've taken a good Bill (Delegate Pogge's HB530) and gutted its key provision -- which would have required HOAs to comply with their own declarations. In case you missed it, CAI attorneys argued for years that the failure to include this requirement in the POAA Section 55-515 meant that homeowners who sued their HOAs -- and WON -- were not entitled to attorney fees, whereas HOAs were entiteled to such fees if THEY won.

But that was just your warm up act. You then took a BAD Bill and made it much WORSE. I hope the homeowners in your districts will read what’s posted here about Delegate Jim LeMunyon's horrific HB791.

Have a good time at the CAI Toga Party!

Meantime, where can I find the "amendments" you made to THIS Bill, HB 690?

It's probably the most anti homeowner Bill introduced this year. I wouldn't have believed that it could be made any worse -- but that was before I read the other amendments that were made by your Subcommittee.

I am very disppointed.

Bob writes:

Disappointing would be a gross understatement. Once again, lawmakers who are supposed to look out for the interests and rights of their constituents bow to the will of the CAI and homeowners get screwed. Shame on all of you!!!

"Passed by for the Day?" writes:

Dear Delegate Massie:

The Virginia Legislative Information System website says that this Bill was "passed by for the day." Beats me why it didn't fly through on the House Floor today.

Hang in there, Delegate Massie, you need to keep up the fight on behalf opf the CAI Property Management Companies and CAI law firms of Virginia! Just hurry up, Son!

As you know, if we don't get this Bill passed, Boards of Directors of Virginia HOAs and Condos won't be able to get their Declarations amended unless their HOMEOWNERS AGREE to the amendments! I mean, how stupid is a requirement like that?

We KNOW that the owners won't agree. That's why we sent you this Bill in the FIRST place. Why would homeowners vote for changes to the Declaration that take their rights AWAY?

Keep explaining to your fellow Delegates that we need this Bill because of "homeowner apathy." Apathy....

Hell, Delegate Massie, if the owners KNEW what you, or their Boards, (or CAI) had in mind in this Bill, the owners might friggin' REVOLT! And I don't even want to THINK about the Press figuring this out...

So let's get this through tomorrow, OK? Just tell our pals in the House of Delegates that the owners are "apathetic." Besides, we know what's best for 'em, right?

Abra K. Dabra
Magical Meadows HOA

Abra K. Dabra, PCAM writes:

Now, Delegate Massie, as we've explained to you, this Bill is very important to CAI and I simply do not understand WHY it has been "passed over for the day" AGAIN!

I'd like to know why, with all the work that Phil Filechurner, Esq, and our CAI lobbyists have done, that this simple Bill hasn't passed the House.

The longer it sits there, the more homeowners are finding out about it, and that is NEVER good for CAI or CAI sponsored Bills.

I expect to read tomorrow that this Bill is on its way to the Senate.

Thank you for your support to CAI.

Abra K. Dabra, PCAM
Magical Meadows HOA

Abra K. Dabra, PCAM writes:

Well, Delegate Massie, I see that HB690 was "engrossed" today.

A "Floor Amendment in the Nature of a substitute..." How nice.

Am I -- or my superiors in CAI -- missing something, or did this "amendment" RESTRICT our ability to get a judge to "reform" a declaration?

As we read the amendment, our ability to get a "reformation" is now limited to matters "REGARDING OWNERSHIP OF LEGAL TITLE OF THE COMMON AREAS OR REAL PROPERTY."

SURE, the Judge can still change "any provision of the declaration," but NOW the judge might ask how our proposed change relates to the limited matters specified. We don't like it when judges get to ask questions like that.

Is this REALLY the best we can get out of this House of Delegates? Are we supposed to start Bills in the SENATE from now on?

For crying out loud, WE'RE CAI! And we're used to getting what we want. I'm getting a lot of heat about this. I expect a call from Phil Filechurner himself within the hour and HE is NOT HAPPY. I can only hope this performance won't affect your good standing with CAI.

Have a nice weekend.

Abra K. Dabra, PCAM
Magical Meadows HOA