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California Common-Interest Development (CID) Law Course
Thursday, Oct. 15, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. (registration begins at 7:30 a.m.) at the Hilton Long Beach

This eight-hour, pre-forum session is an in-depth legal course for community managers, board members and attorneys in California. Taught by experienced community association attorneys, this is the most comprehensive legal course available covering California and federal laws affecting community associations. Attendees will gain a clear understanding of the Davis-Stirling Act, California Corporations Code and common law as they relate to CIDs. A California CID Law Seminar workbook, a valuable resource for use after the seminar, is included. Topics covered include: conflict of interest, governance, board members’ fiduciary duties, operations, homeowners rights and responsibilities, finances, reserves and assessment collections, meetings (notices and voting), rules enforcement and disclosure requirements and CID and board liability.

Legislative Action Committee (CLAC) Benefit Fundraiser
Thursday, Oct. 15,
6:30 p.m.–9 p.m.

In conjunction with the Legal Forum, please join CAI’s eight California chapters and CLAC for an exciting evening of eating, drinking and networking with peers while benefitting CLAC at the same time. The CLAC Benefit Fundraiser dinner will be held at The Federal Bar, a unique experience in Long Beach. Entering The Federal Bar’s Parlour, housed in the basement level of the 1924-built Security Pacific Bank, is like stepping into a 1920s prohibition-era speakeasy. For more information about The Federal Bar, visit For CLAC Benefit Fundraiser sponsorship and registration go to Separate registration and fee required.

Silent Auction
During the Legal Forum a silent auction will be held. Items will include gift baskets, day trips, wine, exclusive art and much more! The bidding will end before the last session of the day. Proceeds will be donated to the California Legislative Action Committee (CLAC) to support legislative efforts.

Education Sessions

Water, Water, Everywhere, Nor Any Drop to Drink
If weather conditions stay as they are, by many accounts California has only a one-year water supply. Governor Brown recently issued his second executive order to address the severe drought conditions, mandating city- and county-wide reductions. Community associations are also a target, and proposed new legislation promises more limitations on water consumption. This session will address the legal and practical aspect of turning a water-consuming community into a water-conscious, drought-tolerant one, using a real-life example from a community association success story.
Lesley Millender-Irwin, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, Seabreeze Management Co. Inc., AAMC; Matt D. Ober, Esq.*, Richardson Harman Ober PC

Protecting the Board, Manager and Association from the Unmanageable Rogue Director
This panel presentation will identify the challenges managers and boards face from “rogue” directors who refuse to follow the law, board resolutions, sensible standards of practice and even common courtesy. While a small minority of those who serve, directors who’ve “gone wild” can hamper a manager’s ability to carry out contractual obligations, interfere with productive board decision making, undermine the board’s credibility and subject it and the association to unnecessary and unreasonable liability. This session will identify the red flags associated with a difficult director (or committee member) and give you tools to help your board operate effectively.
Jeffrey A. Beaumont, Esq.*, Beaumont Gitlin Tashjian; Karen Bennett, PCAM, Action Property Management; Steven S. Weil, Esq.*, Berding|Weil LLP

Common Myths of the So-Called Neighbor-to-Neighbor Dispute Defense
Distinguishing between a true neighbor-to-neighbor dispute and a dispute that requires a community association to get involved is often a difficult task. Associations often mischaracterize neighbor-to-neighbor disputes and believe that certain disputes are exempt from the usual enforcement obligations. What if two neighbors are embroiled in a dispute about second-hand smoke, water leaks, hard-surface flooring or noise? Does the association need to get involved, and if so, to what degree? This session will set the record straight about the types of disputes that require association enforcement and the types of disputes where an association shouldn’t get involved. It will also address risk management and enforcement techniques to protect associations from liability if an owner asserts that an association has failed in its duty to enforce the governing documents.
Corinne Crawford, The Management Trust; Brian D. Moreno, Esq.*, SwedelsonGottlieb; Lisa A. Tashjian, Esq., Beaumont Gitlin Tashjian

Oh, the Horror! Scary Situations for Managers to Avoid
This session will address 13 “horror stories” that community managers can find themselves in and how to deal with those situations. Discussion topics will include social media exposure, hostile work environments, failing to enforce governing documents and hoarding. The scenarios will include nuanced fact patterns appropriate for both new and experienced managers.
W. Alexander Noland, Esq., SwedelsonGottlieb; Amy K. Tinetti, Esq., Hughes Gill Cochrane PC

Resolving Ethical Dilemmas and Conflicts of Interest
What ethical trends are community associations facing today? What does it mean to “do the right thing,” and when do you do it? What can managers, community leaders and business partners do to avoid conflicts of interest, and what are the potential risks and consequences if they don’t? Join the conversation between industry experts, including legal counsel, a community manager and a business partner, to gain tips and best practices to avoid stepping out-of-bounds and into hot water.
Kathryn Henricksen, CMCA, FirstService Residential; Jennifer M. Jacobsen, Esq., Baydaline & Jacobsen LLP

What to Do When Homeowner Requests Become Abusive
This informative and entertaining session will provide community managers with the tools to handle demands for documents and records that become burdensome and draining on an association’s resources and management’s time. Through interactive examples, you’ll learn what documents must be provided, as well as helpful tips for responding to requests that become too extensive or exhaustive.
Christina A. Ciceron, Esq., Christina A. Ciceron APC; James R. McCormick Jr. Esq.*, Peters & Freedman LLP

Shedding Light on Solar: Addressing the Demand for Solar Energy in California Associations
Advances in solar power systems have increased their production potential and significantly lowered their price, making them an enticing concept. This session will review current California law related to installing solar power systems within community associations, as well as the emerging technical evaluations and practical considerations in properly applying them. An expert panel will address owner requests for installation within their own separate interests, owner requests for installation upon elements of the association common areas, association proposals to install systems upon the association common areas and more.
Charles Antis, Antis Roofing & Waterproofing Inc.; Christopher Blevins,; Kendrah Kay, CMCA, PowerStone Property Management; Dirk E. Petchul, Esq., Hickey & Petchul LLP

The Birth of a Common-Interest Development
Experts, including a lawyer who represents homeowners association developers, a lawyer who represents new developments and a manager that transitions new developments from developer to homeowners, will discuss legal and operational issues during the “birth and toddler stage” of a new community. Topics will include BRE filings (including pink, yellow and white reports), phasing and annexation, BRE budgets, bond requirements and exoneration, subsidy and maintenance agreements, class voting, and special rights and exceptions for developers. In addition, practical tips will be provided for the first annual meeting and turnover walk-throughs.
Denise D. Iger, Esq., Iger Wankel & Bonkowski LLP; Sheri L. Marvin, Esq., Jackson DeMarco Tidus Peckenpaugh; Kellie Sambrano, CMCA, FirstService Residential

What Happens in Cyberspace
When it comes to e-mail and social media, the interests of managers, boards and the law generally don’t mesh. Directors can’t access e-mails of other directors, members or managers, nor can they respond to every negative attack on social media. Managers are overwhelmed by the number of e-mails they receive and aren’t sure how to keep their directors off social media. And lawyers usually say, “Just stay away from it,” as if the problems will magically disappear. This session will offer practical advice and discuss the dos and don’ts for managers using e-mail and social media for their associations.
Tracie Blankenship, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, FirstService Residential; Cang N. Le, Esq., Adams Kessler PLC

Finding the Needle in the Haystack: Uncovering HOA Embezzlement, Recouping Stolen Funds and Protecting HOAs from Future Theft
As they are operated by volunteer board members typically without accounting expertise, HOAs are more vulnerable to embezzlement than most for-profit businesses. Fidelity insurance provides valuable protection against such a risk; however, such coverage can be subject to strict notice and reporting deadlines, resulting in coverage denial of suspected theft if claims are delayed. This session provides tips on the detection of fraud, successful prosecution of fidelity claims and future theft prevention.
Thomas M. Ware II, Esq., Kulik Gottesman & Siegel LLP; Ronald S. Stone, Ph.D, CPA, CFE

Friend or Foe: How to Work with Local and Regional Municipalities and Government Agencies
This interactive session will address when and how associations should work with government. When should you turn to the city for local ordinances for enforcement? Should you have provisions in your governing documents or rules? Do city ordinances or regional codes trump your governing documents? Who do you speak to when you need information? And how can associations work with local officials in real estate issues related to easement, planning commissions, etc.? Get answers to these questions and more.
Wendy Bucknum, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, Associa-PCM and councilwoman for the City of Mission Viejo; Steven A. Roseman, Esq., Roseman & Associates APC and commissioner for the City of Calabasas Historic Preservation Committee

*College of Community Association Law (CCAL) fellow​

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