Ask Atty. Pat: How To Legally Remove A Condo Board Member In Connecticut?

Question from SM:

How do condo owners remove one of more board members from a Connecticut condo executive board?

Answer from Glastonbury attorney Patricia Ayars, a member of the Connecticut Condo Owners Coalition Advisory Committee

The correct answer is in  Connecticut Common Interest Ownership Act (CIOA.

If a board member is going to be removed, the meeting notice must say so.  CIOA also provides the procedure for removing a director.  I have included both sections.  Unless you can get the item included in the notice of the meeting sent out by the Association, you will not be able to remove the directors at the January meeting.  You will have to get a new special meeting called.  The provisions are below:

Sec. 47-250. Meetings. Rules. (a) The following requirements apply to unit owner meetings:

(1) An association shall hold a meeting of unit owners annually at a time, date and place stated in or fixed in accordance with the bylaws;

(2) An association shall hold a special meeting of unit owners if its president, a majority of the executive board, or unit owners having at least twenty per cent, or any lower percentage specified in the bylaws, of the votes in the association request that the secretary call the meeting. If the association does not notify unit owners of a special meeting within fifteen days after the requisite number or percentage of unit owners request the secretary to do so, the requesting members may directly notify the unit owners of the meeting. Only matters described in the meeting notice required by subdivision (3) of this subsection may be considered at a special meeting;

(3) An association shall notify unit owners of the time, date and place of each annual and special meeting of unit owners not less than ten days or more than sixty days before the meeting date. Notice may be by any means described in section 47-261c. The notice of any meeting shall state the time, date and place of the meeting and the items on the agenda, including (A) a statement of the general nature of any proposed amendment to the declaration or bylaws, (B) any budget changes, and (C) any proposal to remove an officer or member of the executive board;

(4) Unit owners shall be given a reasonable opportunity at any meeting to comment regarding any matter affecting the common interest community or the association;

Sec. 47-261d. Removal of officers and directors. (a) Notwithstanding any provision of the declaration or bylaws to the contrary, unit owners present in person or by proxy at any meeting of the unit owners at which a quorum is present, or voting by ballot pursuant to subsection (d) of section 47-252, may remove any member of the executive board or any officer elected by the unit owners, with or without cause, if the number of votes cast in favor of removal exceeds the number of votes cast in opposition to removal, except that: (1) A member appointed by the declarant may not be removed by a vote of the unit owners during the period of declarant control; (2) a member appointed under subsection (g) of section 47-245 may be removed only by the person that appointed that member; and (3) the unit owners may not consider whether to remove a member of the executive board or an officer elected by the unit owners at a meeting of the unit owners unless that subject was listed in the notice of the meeting or in the notice of the vote by ballot.

(b) At any meeting at which a vote to remove a member of the executive board or an officer is to be taken, the member or officer being considered for removal must have a reasonable opportunity to speak before the vote is taken. If the vote is taken by ballot pursuant to subsection (d) of section 47-252, the member or officer being considered for removal shall be given a reasonable opportunity to deliver information to the unit owners as provided in said subsection.

From: Attorney Patricia A. Ayars
(860) 652-7070

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12 Responses to Ask Atty. Pat: How To Legally Remove A Condo Board Member In Connecticut?

  1. Lynn Jones says:

    We recently removed our president thanks to the help of CCOC. CCOC was critical in guiding myself and other unit owners through the entire process and we succeeded! Thank you CCOC!!!!

  2. Fellow Condo Owner says:

    I wonder if Atty. Ayars, who authored the above article, is a condo owner or condo resident?

    If so, I would be interested in knowing her experience with her condo board if it is corrupt, abusive or manipulative. If not, I dont know if she really feels the pain many unit owners feel when faced with corrupt association boards.

    (I understand not all associations have corrupt boards. Many do. Not every driver drives through red lights, but we have police paid by all taxpayers to enforce traffic laws broken by the relatively few who break the law and get caught.)

    CCOC should be fighting to establish an office where condo owners can report condo board and association abuses that could be investigated.

    Why not have the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection investigate alleged condo association abuses raised by condo owners? Condo owners are consumers, too. There are 250,000 of us in our state.

  3. Diz says:

    Once removed then what? Would you please be so kind as to provide a follow up post on how owners or the remaining board select replacements.

    • Lynn Jones says:

      We removed our president at the annual meeting. We also had unit owners in place who wanted to serve on the board. We then nominated candidates and voted. We replaced the entire board!! It was sweet!!!!

  4. John says:

    In Florida clothslines are allowed by state law in order
    to save energy. Does Connecticut have any such law?
    I am referring of coarse, to condominium living.

    Thank you,

    John

  5. Anonymous says:

    As Lynn said: We have individuals to replace the board; so we can move forward and yes, the board is non responsive and have coordinated a secret meeting and we are in hope that the new laws that Consumer Protection, Atty General, CCOC and Legislation finally put their written law to work regarding secret meetings and transparency. We will see.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I agree the dept of consumer protection should be involved. Oakwood condo association and their so called board are still doing what they do.

    If you question any form of questionable activity, they deny it and threaten to sue you. Send you nasty letters and such. They don’t respond to maintenance concerns and make up rules for their convenience. It is truly scary what I have seen them do.
    Prior to a few months ago there was alot of problems with security and theftery in the commons. It was a ongoing issue for years.
    They finally put locks in the front doors.
    I know realize people are reading replys’ on this newsletter and I think due to the fact that some were posted where common notes usually are posted. Due to the fact it may be about them. They (steve margolis and ruby lawrence) don’t like it and security locks appear to be in their own interest not the of protection of the residents of oakwood.

    Hopeless

  7. feeling trapped says:

    My wife and I purchased our Condo in 2006. We love the area, the people and location. The problem is many of the Board Members. Many are rude and dismissive towards the residents. I was finally able to video tape a Board members behavior this past storm 2013. I was coordinating efforts to have vehicles moved temporarily so a more efficient snow removal could take place. Dispite paying a contractor a contracted amount for snow removal only one Bobcat was on property because a resident called and asked to use the equipment left on property. All but one car was moved. When the owner came out it was the Board Member who has been verbally rude and threatening to myself and sometimes children. “although in the past I thought the children were doing something wrong”. she is an elderly lady so I usually take the threats with a grain of salt.
    I attempted to ask her if she either needed help or could move her car to an area that had already been cleared of snow. The Board Member told me to F off and Shut UP!. I waited several minutes and the next time I turned my IPHONE on and recorded the interaction. The person was dismissive and then launched an assault calling me Stupid, swearing and then trying to hit me with a ice scrapper.

    Later on when she moved her vehicle slightly she got out and told me to stand behind her car so she could hit me. Several other owners witness this and we just moved out of her way so as to not provide her the opportunity.

    We have been trying to sell our condo after experiencing years of conflict and injustice from the Board Members and with similiar behaviors. Residents even voted me on the Board one year, but the Board Members did not like it and I was off the Board the following year. My work schedule did conflict and I did not fight it as each meeting felt it was the Board Against the residents and myself.

    The Board members do stick together and many just rotate through the positions. One time the President was the treasure and also got paid as a Maint worker. Actually the president still holds a paid Maint worker position but now the husband of the previous president is the treasure. Our budget is around $600,000/yr.

    What can be done about rude, agressive, dissmissive Board members who make your home a disheartening and frustrating place to live.

    Signed
    Feeling trapped

    • bhl says:

      I think many condo complexes are experiencing the same behavior from board members. If I knew then what I know now there is no way we would have purchased a condo and kept our beautiful private home. We now pay for our own roofs, driveways to be repaired, sidewalks, own gutters. Who says a condo is work free?
      We have the same issues with the board. They secretly have meetings, so unit owners can’t attend, they lie when they even are caught and they still deny it, and yes they keep their friends on the board and just change the positions and make sure no new persons can get on the board. Many people don’t want to get involved and just live here in peace so that is why nothing gets resolved. I never encountered such devious, rude people ever in my life! It’s a disgrace… 2 board members are so rude to unit owners and could care less what’s going on with any unit owners but themselves. Self absorption . I think these kind of people had nothing in their lives with perhaps friends, neighbors, and being a head of anything in their lives. Associations need people persons on the board. Caring, loving individuals who can be respectful to everyone, not just their friends. People think you need a college or masters degree, not so. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to be a board member even a treasurer as some think. If you can balance your check book, you certainly can budget a condominium with the quickbook programs they have in software today. It’s a piece of cake and so easy to follow. The board here suggests a written resume about yourself which turn people off. Some that work in finance are not necessarily good at it as we have found out here at our complex.
      Boards have a bad title because they feel they are above all the rest living in the complex. This law has to change giving 3 board members all the control for everyone else who pays the same condo fees. All units owners should vote for everything and a law needs to be changed. That’s the fair way to all get along. Whoever made these rediculous laws to give a few such control is disasterous! Don’t they get it?

  8. Patty Dest says:

    I read the comments and have the same situation. I have lived in East Gate Condo in Hamden for 39 years. I was on the board for 20 years. I learned very quickly. We have a board that hates my guts because I was so involved. When they started to go in the wrong direction, I, would try to let them know what the bylaws meant. That is why they hate me. They called me into a “kangaroo court” w[th the associations attorney. First of all I had to pay 2 lawyers, the one that I paid myself ($1000). and the one that I pay for the association lawyer. First of all there was no need for a lawyer. I had to get one as I knew they would tear me to pieces. The worst thing that happened was the associations lawyer, called the cops on my attorney to remove him. He stopped my lawyer from defending me. Of course, The board found me guilty as charged. My punishment was 2 weeks of pool pass suspension and a $25 fine. This is how the board handles things. We recently lost FHA. But the board did nothing. They didn’t even inform the residents. Nothing is selling in here because people want FHA. I told everyone that we lost FHA and the people are livid. They want to have the option to sell and right now the people are all for getting back FHA. It is almost impossible to get a conventional mortgage. But the board decided they didn’t want that, so they added some “pork” to the bylaw change. They said if we wanted to get FHA ($1200) we had to go over all the bylaws.($10,000). There is no need to go over the bylaws, we have plenty of time to do it. I have lived here for the last 39, volunteered in a lot of projects, but the board hates my guts. I am very sad about East Gate. I wish I could move after 39 yrs. The board runs this place like (gestapos)and we have to sit still, It’s like living in prison. My home is no longer my home. If I could sell my unit,but no FHA!

  9. anonymous says:

    I do not want to use my name for fear of retaliation. We are trying to remove a board member and a petition was signed by unit owners but the board did not act as they sent it to assoc. atty who said the wording was incorrect on petition and unit owners would have to submit another one. Is there special wording that you need to use if you are trying to remove a board member for no cause?

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