Is your vote necessary to amend CC&Rs?

A September 2004 Michigan Appeals Court decision addressed the validity of amending the CC&Rs with less that a unanimous vote. The Court held to the position that homeowners are bound to amendment changes that are passed in accordance with the CC&Rs amendment provisions — a less than 100% vote binds all others. Talk about lack of informed consent to such potentially wide-ranging impact on your home.

Citing another case, the Court considered the following as a possible consequence of allowing a less than unanimous vote:

“Taking these words to mean that particular lots could be excepted [say from paying assessments] permits the obviously unintended result that 51 per cent of the owners could exempt their own property and leave the other 49 per cent encumbered or could even impose more strict restrictions upon certain lots.”

Therefore, It went on to say,

“We conclude that the logic of the many courts cited [ ] is sound and should be followed here: Non-uniform covenant amendments require the unanimous consent of the affected property owners. Permitting non-uniform amendments and exemptions by majority or supermajority vote would destroy this crucial aspect of covenants and thus undermine the entire system of private regulation of real property in Michigan. The fundamental premise that makes people willing to bind themselves to the burdens of restrictive covenants is that the resulting benefits are assured; each property owner relies on the fact that all are bound equally ….”

Published in: on October 28, 2004 at 1:41 pm  Leave a Comment  

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