What’s New at GSL

GSL Alert – CAI Federal Government Advocacy

U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES PASSES BILL REGARDING HAM RADIO ANTENNAS AND TOWERS IN COMMUNITY ASSOCIATIONS

On Monday, September 12, the U.S. House of Representatives approved H.R. 1301. H.R. 1301 is the amended Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2016 that contains language adopted from a CAI compromise proposal. The Senate still needs to approve the legislation if H.R. 1301 is to be signed into law.

Initially, Community Associations Institute opposed H.R. 1301, because it contained language preempting association regulations on HAM radio use and severely curtailed association input on the use and placement of amateur radio antennas.

rooftop_hamWorking on behalf of its member associations, CAI’s Federal Legislative Action Committee worked with members of congress to incorporate several key changes to H.R. 1301, making it more acceptable to associations and owners alike. The adopted changes include:

  • Prior consent of the association is required by HAM radio operators to install outdoor antennas
  • Antennas will be prohibited on common property, and
  • Associations will be allowed to establish written rules concerning outdoor HAM radio antennas.

The recently approved H.R. 1301 legislation permits community associations to create and enact reasonable written rules concerning the installation and use of HAM radio antennas. These rules must permit the installation of an effective antenna, but may restrict HAM antennas to height, location, and aesthetic standards.

At this point, the Senate has not indicated when they would take up the amended version of H.R. 1301. If it does not become law in 2016, the bill would need to restart the legislative process in 2017. As always, we will keep you posted on any updates!

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In Studio – RERB Summer Edition!

  • Featured in the video are GSL Principals Ellen Shapiro and Henry Goodman during their most recent WBZ Real Estate Radio Boston segment in which the two discuss condominium safety and the challenges facing new board members elected to condominium associations. Safety concerns are a hot topic on Real Estate Radio Boston and on this show, Ellen and Henry discuss the increasing concerns associations have with safety issues as well as the things new board members need to be aware of as they agree to their new responsibility. GSL appears frequently as expert contributors on WBZ’s Real Estate Radio Boston with hosts Rick Scherer & Ali Alavi. Hear GSL’s point of view in this segment of Real Estate Radio Boston!
    • For information about our future airings, please stay tuned for updates via email, Facebook, and Twitter.

    Thanks for Listening!

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    Educated Business Partner Distinction – Get Familiar With the Test!

    Educated Business Partner Distinction – Get Familiar With the Test!

    “Educated Business Partner Distinction – Get Familiar With the Test!”
    by Ellen Shapiro, Esq.
    Condo Media, May 2016

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    Drones! Watch GSL on Real Estate Radio Boston 3-19-16

    • Featured in the video are GSL Principals Frank Lombardi and Henry Goodman during their most recent WBZ Real Estate Radio Boston segment in which the two discuss drones and the challenges facing condominium associations with their recent proliferation. Drones, drones everywhere! This is a hot topic on Real Estate Radio Boston. On this show, Frank and Henry discuss the increasing concern associations have with drones. As the popular devices become more convenient and affordable, associations face increasing inquiry about policy, liability issues and acceptable uses from unit owners. GSL appears frequently as expert contributors on WBZ’s Real Estate Radio Boston with hosts Rick Scherer & Ali Alavi.Hear GSL’s point of view in this segment of Real Estate Radio Boston!
    • For information about our future airings, please stay tuned for updates via email, Facebook, and Twitter.

    Thanks for Listening!

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    SJC Overturns Lower Court Decisions in Drummer Boy v. Britton

    GSL CONGRATULATES CONDOMINIUMS!

    GSL congratulates condominiums on the long awaited decision of the Supreme Judicial Court which overturned three lower court decisions in Drummer Boy v. Britton.    In a decision which has enormous significance to condominiums in Massachusetts, the SJC ruled that condominiums do have the right to file “rolling liens” for each six month period wherein common area assessments are unpaid.  As stated by the Court “our interpretation of the statute is consistent with the Legislature’s long-standing interest in improving the governance of condominiums and strengthening the ability of organization of unit owners to collect common expenses, thereby avoiding a reemergence of the serious public emergency that developed in the early 1990”s.”  Simply stated, protecting condominiums is of utmost importance in today’s world.

    This decision represents the final chapter in the long battle to uphold the rolling lien led by Tom Moriarty of MEEB together with the support of GSL and Perkins & Anctil who drafted and filed the amicus (friend of the Court) brief on behalf of CAI-NE.

    Additionally, we want to thank Avidia Bank, Brookline Bank, Mutual of Omaha Bank, North Shore Bank and Rockland Trust Company (whose amicus brief was drafted and filed by Alan Lipkind, Esq. of Burns & Levinson) for recognizing and supporting the importance of the rolling lien.  A final thank you to REBA for filing an amicus brief drafted by Diane Rubin, Esq. of Prince Lobel and Clive Martin, Esq. of Robinson & Cole.

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    In Limbo with Incomplete Foreclosures?

    IN LIMBO WITH INCOMPLETE FORECLOSURES

    Is your association finding frustration when a lender begins a foreclosure proceeding on a unit and then seems to stop? Even worse than that, do you have units that are vacant because their owners have simply abandoned them, stopped paying the common fees and the common area and units suffer damage from burst pipes caused by lack of unit maintenance or heat?

    Row of hands making notes

    There is a potential remedy. The Consumer Financial Protection Board (CFPB) may be able to help. If the mortgage is held by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae, they may be forced to take actions that will preserve the unit. If the mortgagee foreclosure hasn’t been completed, the lender may be fined. Of course, there is no guarantee this will work but it is another tool in your tool box.

    If you are facing this challenge CAI has prepared a link for you to file the complaint. Simply Click here for additional background information and simple instructions to file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Board (CFPB) or if you prefer we will be happy to assist you.

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    Watch in Studio Video – Real Estate Radio Boston – Jan 23, 2016

    • Featured in the video are GSL Principals Frank Lombardi and Henry Goodman during their most recent WBZ Real Estate Radio Boston segment in which the two discuss drones and the challenges facing condominium associations with their recent proliferation. Drones, drones everywhere! This is a hot topic on Real Estate Radio Boston. On this show, Frank and Henry discuss the increasing concern associations have with drones. As the popular devices become more convenient and affordable, associations face increasing inquiry about policy, liability issues and acceptable uses from unit owners. GSL appears frequently as expert contributors on WBZ’s Real Estate Radio Boston with hosts Rick Scherer & Ali Alavi.Hear GSL’s point of view in this segment of Real Estate Radio Boston!
    • For information about our future airings, please stay tuned for updates via email, Facebook, and Twitter.

    Thanks for Listening!

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    Watch in Studio Video – GSL on Real Estate Radio Boston – 11-21-15

    • Featured in the video are GSL Principals Ellen Shapiro and Henry Goodman during their most recent WBZ Real Estate Radio Boston segment in which the two discuss the difficult role association board members take on when they “volunteer.” In this segment, Ellen and Henry will discuss some of the real problems board members deal with every day from fellow unit owners when trying to make decisions in the best interest of the association. Don’t miss this week’s discussion on the potential pitfalls condo associations and boards face with these complex and potentially costly issues.

      GSL appears frequently as expert contributors on WBZ’s Real Estate Radio Boston with hosts Rick Scherer & Ali Alavi.Hear GSL’s point of view in this segment of Real Estate Radio Boston!

    • For information about our future airings, please stay tuned for updates via email, Facebook, and Twitter.

    Thanks for Listening!

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    GSL Decision Alert!

    GMScourtroom

    GSL Decision ALERT!

    GSL Protects the Association’s Super Priority Lien in Rhode Island

    The Rhode Island Supreme Court released its opinion today in the much anticipated case of Twenty Eleven, LLC vs. Botelho. The question before the Court was whether or not a condominium lien foreclosure sale on the association’s super priority lien, conducted pursuant to the Rhode Island Condominium Act, Section 36.1 et seq., extinguished a first mortgage on the unit, when the mortgagee failed to exercise the statutory right of redemption.

    Goodman, Shapiro, & Lombardi, LLC represented the Plaintiff, Twenty Eleven LLC, who purchased the condominium unit at the association’s foreclosure sale of its super priority lien, which the mortgagee had failed to pay prior to foreclosure. After foreclosure, the mortgagee also failed to redeem the unit after sale and the condominium association gave a foreclosure deed to Plaintiff. In so doing, Goodman, Shapiro & Lombardi, LLC was hoping to protect the “Super Lien” enjoyed by Associations. We were successful!

    The facts of the case are briefly stated as follows. After the foreclosure sale, the mortgagee attempted to foreclose on the unit. GSL filed a complaint to quiet title in Superior Court, arguing that the mortgage was extinguished by virtue of the foreclosure of the association’s super priority lien, and that the mortgagee had failed to redeem the unit. The Superior Court dismissed the complaint and held that the super priority lien was not a true priority lien capable of extinguishing a first mortgage, and that the Plaintiff did not hold title free and clear of the mortgage. GSL Attorneys Frank A. Lombardi and Mary-Joy Howes appealed the case to the Rhode Island Supreme Court.

    Marking a huge victory for condominium associations in Rhode Island, the opinion, released today, reversed the Superior Court decision. The Rhode Island Supreme Court held, “[A]t best, the right of redemption creates a conditional foreclosure: foreclosure of the super-priority lien extinguishes the first mortgage (and any other junior liens on the unit) unless the first mortgage redeems within the statutory period. Here, defendant did not redeem and, as such, relinquished its last chance to save its security interest in the property.”

    This victory follows the recent decisions in Nevada and the District of Columbia, (in which members of Goodman, Shapiro & Lombardi, LLC also filed successful Amicus Curiae (friend of the Court) briefs which have also held that the association’s lien is a true priority lien that is capable of extinguishing a first mortgage by foreclosure.

    If you have questions please direct them to Frank Lombardi at lombardi@goshlaw.com, Ellen Shapiro at shapiro@goshlaw.com, Henry Goodman at goodman@goshlaw.com or Mary-Joy Howes at howes@goshlaw.com.

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    GSL is Offering Discounts to the CAI-NE Expo

     

    Conf Logo

    GSL will once again be attending the Community Associations Institute New England Chapter Condo Conference & Expo on Saturday, October 24th.  Come visit with GSL attorneys at Booth #8 located at the entrance to the exhibit hall.  GSL is also offering discounted admission to the event for our loyal clients and friends of the firm.

    Click Here for 50% off Admission When Pre-Registering

    Condo Conference & Expo
    October 24 2015 – 8:00 am – 2:00 pm 
    Marriott Hotel – Burlington, MA

    Conference Agenda

    8:00 am – 9:30 am Appreciation Breakfast for Community Association Volunteer Leaders*
    A TICKETED EVENT OPEN ONLY TO BOARD MEMBERS
    *Included with registration fee

    9:30 am – 2:00 pm – Exhibit Hall/Consultants Open for Attendees

    11:00 am – Noon – Insurance Claims and Liability: When, How and Who

    11:30 am – 1:00 pm – Recognition Lunch for Community Association Managers*
    A TICKETED EVENT OPEN ONLY TO ASSOCIATION MANAGERS
    *Included with registration fee

    Noon – 1:30 pm – Lunch with Exhibitors*
    *Included with registration fee

    1:30 pm – 2:00 pm – Door Prize Drawings in Exhibit Hall

    2:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Associations and the Law

    2:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Self-Managed and Small Association Challenges

    3:00 pm – 5:00 pm – ELN Post Conference Reception

     

     

    Approved for 5 hours continuing education for CMCA and AMS

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