Electronic Balloting May be Coming to HOA Elections

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electronic-ballot.jpgUnder the Davis Stirling Act as currently written, common interest developments (“CIDs”) are required to comply with certain procedures for conducting elections. Among other requirements, the Act requires CIDs run by homeowners associations (“HOAs”) to adopt rules and appoint inspectors for the purpose of verifying signatures, counting and tabulating votes. Additionally, the votes themselves must be placed on secret paper ballots, using a specific procedure requiring the use of double envelopes.

Although the rules were intended to improve and standardize the manner in which HOA elections are conducted, they have also had the unfortunate consequence of making it more difficult to achieve quorum. As a result, HOAs are expending more resources, time and money in their attempts to hold an effective election.

In response to these difficulties, the California Legislature has introduced Assembly Bill 1360 (“AB 1360”) sponsored by the CAI California Legislative Action Committee (“CLAC”). In short, AB 1360 proposes to modify the rules to authorize HOAs to conduct elections and other votes of the membership by electronic means. Although paper ballots would still be utilized, the Bill would require Associations to provide their members with the option of voting electronically.

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To be kept up to date on the progress of AB 1360, visit CLAC’s blog. If you have questions or concerns regarding your HOA’s voting procedures, or would like to know more about the potential impact of AB 1360, contact your HOA’s legal counsel.

Content by TLG attorney Kai MacDonald