How do you remove an HOA board member? Homeowners might ask this question when board members aren’t fulfilling their duties. While the process may be challenging, it’s not impossible.
Can an HOA Board Member Be Removed?
At first, removing an HOA board member may seem out of the question, especially since the community elected them. However, it may be possible depending on the reason. The governing documents and state law may outline various acceptable grounds for removing HOA officers.
Many governing documents will allow the community members to remove a board member if they fail to meet certain requirements. For example, if someone doesn’t attend the required number of board meetings, the governing documents may allow the community to remove them. However, removal usually requires approval from a majority of the members. At times, it may require approval from all of the members. Hence, it may be difficult to proceed without support.
Also, state law may allow the community to remove HOA board members or officers under certain conditions. For instance, Florida law states that board members are automatically removed from their position if they’re convicted felons or charged with theft or embezzlement of community funds. They’re also automatically disqualified if they’re delinquent in paying HOA fees.
In some states, the community members can even remove a board member without cause. The law will usually allow this if the HOA meets membership approval requirements. However, checking the governing documents and state laws applicable to your HOA before proceeding is best.
Who Can Remove an HOA Board Member?
If state law and the governing documents allow, the community members can often remove HOA board members. But who else can remove HOA board members aside from the membership? Can an HOA board remove a board member?
It depends. If the HOA Bylaws or Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&Rs) allow it, the rest of the board can remove a board member. They will often do so by a majority vote of the remaining directors. The conditions for removal will, again, depend on state law and the governing documents. However, most HOAs only allow the board to remove officers from their positions.
Apart from this, the court can also remove directors. This usually happens as a response to the director’s dishonest or fraudulent actions within the HOA. Depending on state law, they may also be able to remove the board member if they’re convicted or declared to be of unsound mind.
Finally, if the developer or a designator appoints a director, they can often be removed by the person who appointed them.
When Can You Not Remove an HOA Board Member?
There are instances wherein communities cannot remove an HOA board member. For example, the community members might not recall the HOA board member the developer appointed. Community members are also not allowed to remove board members appointed by the court. Usually, only the one who designated them can remove the HOA board officer.
How to Remove an HOA Board Member
Is one of the board members in your HOA community unqualified, negligent, confrontational, or causing more harm than good? Depending on the situation, removing the board member from their position may be wise. If this is what you must do, here’s what you must know about removing a board member from an HOA.
1. Check State Law and the Governing Documents
Removing HOA board members is a serious action, and homeowners must proceed cautiously. It’s best to consult the governing documents first, as there may be a specific procedure homeowners must follow. Homeowners should also check applicable state laws to avoid potential violations and penalties.
When in doubt, you can ask a lawyer specializing in homeowners associations. They should be able to help you understand the proper grounds for removal and identify the next steps.
2. Express Your Concern
Homeowners should voice their concerns about the board members before proceeding with the removal. Consider attending a board meeting or writing a letter to the HOA board.
How do I write a letter to remove a board member? First, it’s wise to gather support from fellow homeowners by obtaining signatures for a petition. Make sure to include these signatures in the letter you submit. Also, remember to include the reasons for removal as required by state law or the governing documents.
3. Allow the Director to Respond
The director in question should have an opportunity to respond. They may respond by holding a hearing or simply choosing to resign. The board must notify the homeowners properly if the HOA pushes through with a hearing. During the hearing, the board member can be heard and defend themselves.
3. Hold a Special Meeting
If the board member is to be removed, homeowners usually need to conduct a special meeting to address the removal. The governing documents should outline how homeowners can hold a special meeting and what notices are necessary. They may also indicate how many votes the HOA needs for the motion to pass.
4. Replace the Director
After voting, the homeowners should have a plan to elect a replacement board member. This prevents the HOA from having any vacant positions. Consult the governing documents to ensure you follow the community’s election procedures.
Difficult, But Sometimes Necessary
HOA board members have a fiduciary duty to act in the community’s best interest. However, not all board members align themselves with the HOA’s goals. Some are antagonistic, self-serving, negligent, or even downright dishonest. If peaceful resolutions fail, the community may need to remove an HOA board member.
Whether you’re a self-managed HOA or an HOA management company, it can be hard to oversee a community without the right tools. That’s where HOA management software like Condo Manager can come in. Call us today at (800) 626-1267 or contact us online to book a demo!
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