B.M. from Oakland County, Michigan writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
Our association elects new board members every September for 2-year terms. Because of COVID restrictions all meetings were on zoom. When it came to elections there was no proxy or voting by the HOA. Those members that ran unopposed were automatically selected as board members. All the years prior, we would meet in person and people would nominate someone for the board or someone would step up and run and state their reason why they should be elected. The membership would then cast votes and elect new members. But this last election did not go through that process and I wonder if we actually have an illegal board. Your thoughts please.
Mister Condo replies:
B.M., COVID certainly changed a lot of things. Condominium and HOA elections were no exception. However, simply adding the ability to vote by Zoom or by email doesn’t fundamentally change the election process. While I doubt that you have an “illegal” Board, it is possible that not all voting measures were followed but I suspect enough of them were that the association election was largely intact. The good news is that with 2-year terms, elections are right around the corner in terms of the lifespan of a condominium association. Even if you were unhappy with one or two of the folks elected, I am guessing there are several other Board members you are happy with. You didn’t mention if there are staggered terms, meaning that while some members were up for their two-year term, others were still in office and not due to be up until this year. Again, that means the Board is comprised of folks elected the old way and folks elected via Zoom this past year. This also adds to the integrity of the Board and its elected members. The good news is that many associations are back to regular meetings. Hopefully, your elections will not be held electronically this year. If they are, be sure that the rules for electing folks are followed. It may not be the same as it used to be but it should follow the guidelines as detailed in your governing documents. All the best!