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2023 Common Interest Development & Community Association Legislative Update

Published: November 2022

The legislative season has concluded with the adoption of new laws affecting Association operations. Most of these are contained in Assembly Bill 1410 that amends provisions of the Civil Code (“CC”). Changes to laws concerning how government agencies deal with ADUs and JADUs are covered by Senate Bill 897. The below changes to the law become effective January 1, 2023.

“Roommate Rentals” (CC §4739[a])

This law only applies to rentals of less than a member’s entire home (“Roommate Rentals”). An Association’s governing documents may not limit Roommate Rentals to less than thirty (30) days. The new law does not address whether or not the governing documents can require a minimal Roommate Rental period of more than thirty (30) days. CC §4741(a) allows an Association to adopt governing document provisions that prohibit rentals of less than thirty (30) days. Both these laws should be read in conjunction with CC §4741(a) which indicates that governing document provisions that prohibit or “unreasonably restrict” rentals are unenforceable. No law or case defines what might be an “unreasonable restriction” (including minimum lease periods an Association can require). The financial risks are high, and not changing as well as enforcing current provisions that might unreasonably restrict rentals makes claims more likely.

Associations cannot ban what owners/residents may post on social media (CC §4515)

An Association cannot prevent or punish an owner who uses social media or other online resources to criticize or comment on Association operations, elections to public office, or proposed legislation. An Association is not required to provide its members with access to social media or other online resources, or to post content on the Association’s website.

Associations cannot require payment of an insurance deductible for damage arising out of use of common area for protected political activities (CC §4515)

Current law allows owners and residents to engage in specified, protected political activities in the separate interests and common area of a common interest development including meeting and inviting public officials to attend meetings. Amendments to that law specifically allow “peacefully assembling”, inviting elected officials to meetings, canvassing residents, and distributing political or other information of interest to Association members and residents. The Association must make common area, (including a clubhouse), generally available for these purposes to members and residents and, under the new law, they may not be required to pay deductibles (for claims arising out of damage to the common area).

New limitations on local government authority to impose conditions on ADU/JADUs (Government Code §§65852.22, 65852.23 , 65852.2 and health and Safety Code §17980.12)

Generally, the purpose of these laws is to limit the ability of local agencies (building officials, planning departments, Boards of Supervisors, and City Counsels), to prohibit or impose conditions on certain kinds of ADUs and JADUs. The bill changes height limitations of ADUs, restricts parking requirements for ADUs, prohibits agencies from using “subjective criteria” in reviewing ADU/JADU applications, and imposes many other limits on what an agency can do to limit ADUs and JADUs. These laws do not specifically apply to conditions that an association might impose but do reflect a strong government policy allowing for the proliferation of these types of housing.

We are happy to provide counsel, recommendations, and policies where needed and appropriate to assist in a community’s compliance with the new laws.

Please let us know if you would like a complimentary proposal for updating the association’s governing documents to meet any of the above new law requirements or for any other matter regarding the association’s governing documents. We have a dedicated governing document update team that will be happy to assist you. Please feel free to contact Jill Jackson at jjackson@berdingweil.com if you would like to request a proposal.

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