J.B. from outside of Connecticut writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
We live in a 9-unit condo association. We need to have a special assessment for a new roof. In one unit, the people are having marital problems, not knowing what is going to happen. Wife is moving out, husband is not paying bills, and so on. What can we do as an association if the unit owners say they cannot come up with their share of the special assessment?
Mister Condo replies:
J.B., I am sorry that your association finds itself in need of a special assessment and I am certainly sorry that you have a unit owner who will likely be unable to pay that assessment but I am reminded of an old saying: What has that got to do with the price of tea in China? The two items are unrelated. The association’s interest always supersedes any unit owner’s financial problems. The association will levy the assessment and the unit owners are expected to pay. Any that do not pay will face collection actions by the association, up to and including foreclosure. Your bylaws should be perfectly clear on what happens when fees aren’t paid. Typically, a collection letter is sent and a notice of demand for the amount in question is sent. If the monies aren’t submitted ion timely fashion, the association uses its lien against the property to bring suit against the unit owner which often leads to foreclosure. It isn’t a function of being cruel and uncaring about the unit owner having marital difficulties and financial difficulties. That is none of the association’s business. Collecting the monies due to the association is the only item of concern for the association. Good luck!