State bill to help with condo board disputes stalls
Loop North News

Condominium Life

12-Jun-16 – A “right to fairness” bill that would make it easier for unit owners in Illinois to sue their condominium association appears stuck in committee and may be dead for the spring session that ends this month.

Scott Drury House Bill 4489, along with two related amendments to the Condominium Property Act, was filed on January 22 by 58th District Representative Scott Drury (left), who declined to comment on the bill’s current status.

On February 4, the bill was assigned to the eleven-member Judiciary-Civil Committee, of which Drury is Vice Chairperson, but on March 2 it lost a motion, 3-8, for recommendation to the full House. On April 8, it was re-referred to the Rules Committee.

Among the numerous changes to state law, a condo association would not be allowed to limit a unit owner’s right to sue, compliance with a demand by the association would not waive the owner’s right to sue later, and it would require the association to represent the best interests of all unit owners without regard to the wishes of the association’s board of directors.

The Judiciary-Civil Committee heard from two Chicago-area homeowners and a Chicago attorney.

Lisa Carlson told how she lost her condo unit and wound up $400,000 in debt because her condo association in Highland Park would not fix a leaky roof. A Gold Coast unit owner, Michael Novak, says the bill would have saved him and his condo board $1 million.

Norman Lerum, whose areas of practice include condo law, says the bill should be passed to eliminate “abusive litigation tactics” by condo associations.

Community Association Institute of Illinois, however, whose 1,100 chapter members include association managers, board members, and unit owners, says the bill would increase time and expense needed to collect delinquent assessments, and it would only result in more lawsuits.

Carlson (right) told Loop North News she and Lerum will “march on to try again but we are doing some information gathering right now.” Lisa Carlson

 Previous story: Unit owners urge state lawmakers to help with condo board disputes

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