INDIANA – State limited in enforcement involving homeowner’s association
RTV6: State limited in enforcement involving homeowner’s associations
By: Kara KenneyMay 1, 2019
INDIANAPOLIS — A Call 6 Investigation into homeowner’s associations suing thousands of homeowners is prompting a lot of reaction.Attorneys for HOAs say lawsuits are a last resort to get homeowners to pay unpaid dues or comply with the neighborhood’s covenants. But some homeowners say the state needs to do more about HOAs that overreach or who aren’t following the rules.
Call 6 Investigates found more than 530 complaints filed with the Indiana Attorney General’s office since 2009 against community associations alleging fraud, unprofessional conduct, billing disputes, and professional incompetence.“We get a variety of complaints from homeowners,” said Betsy DeNardi, director of consumer protection for the Indiana Attorney General’s office.Records show the Attorney General’s office closes most complaints because of insufficient evidence, no violation was found, or because the Attorney General’s office does not have jurisdiction.”The Attorney General’s authority over homeowner’s associations is limited in some ways, so some of those complaints we just have to provide them with a letter saying there’s nothing we can do,” said DeNardi.Indiana law allows the Attorney General’s Office to take action involving an HOA only on five specific things such as if an HOA intentionally or knowingly misappropriates funds, if the HOA violates its requirements related to budgets, or fails to properly use proxies.“If a board member does something that is a fraudulent or criminal act that involves the homeowners association or the board, it’s essentially misconduct by a board member,” said DeNardi. “We can file a lawsuit and get a judgment.” Read more: