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Indiana Court of Appeals rules against HOA in covenant violation case

A recent Indiana Court of Appeals decision addressed the actions of a homeowners association against a member regarding a covenant violation.

In Bixeman v. Hunter’s Run Homeowners Association of St. John, Inc., a homeowner was alleged to have violated provisions contained in the association’s covenants. The association gave the homeowner seven days’ notice of a hearing on the violations; however, the homeowners were out of town and unable to return for the hearing. The association proceeded to impose a financial sanction, which the homeowner did not pay, leading to the association recording a lien against the homeowner’s property.

The Court of Appeals held that the sanction was invalid because the association did not give the homeowners proper notice of the hearing as required in its covenants. Additionally, the Court found the association committed slander of title for failing to release an invalid lien.

This case highlights the need for homeowner associations to strictly comply with the provisions of their covenants and applicable law.  Failing to do so may result in a Court invalidating the association’s actions, as well as imposing damages against the association.

If you have any questions concerning enforcement of homeowner association covenants or for assistance in reviewing covenants and charting a course of action, please contact attorney Shannon Frank at sfrank@KDDK.com or (812) 423-3183, or contact any member of the KDDK Real Estate Law Practice Team.

About the Author

Shannon S. Frank

Shannon S. Frank, a Partner at Kahn, Dees, Donovan & Kahn, LLP (KDDK), in Evansville, Indiana, has more than 25 years’ experience in the practice of business law, construction law, estate planning and probate administration, health care law, and real estate law. Shannon takes prides in giving exceptional service to her clients, recognizing that relationships with clients play a significant and essential role in providing tailored and comprehensive legal advice.