Code Section Group

Civil Code - CIV

DIVISION 4. GENERAL PROVISIONS [3274 - 9566]

  ( Heading of Division 4 amended by Stats. 1988, Ch. 160, Sec. 16. )

PART 5. Common Interest Developments [4000 - 6150]

  ( Part 5 added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 180, Sec. 2. )

CHAPTER 10. Dispute Resolution and Enforcement [5850 - 5985]

  ( Chapter 10 added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 180, Sec. 2. )

ARTICLE 4. Civil Action [5975 - 5986]
  ( Article 4 added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 180, Sec. 2. )

5975.
  

(a) The covenants and restrictions in the declaration shall be enforceable equitable servitudes, unless unreasonable, and shall inure to the benefit of and bind all owners of separate interests in the development. Unless the declaration states otherwise, these servitudes may be enforced by any owner of a separate interest or by the association, or by both.

(b) A governing document other than the declaration may be enforced by the association against an owner of a separate interest or by an owner of a separate interest against the association.

(c) In an action to enforce the governing documents, the prevailing party shall be awarded reasonable attorney’s fees and costs.

(Added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 180, Sec. 2. (AB 805) Effective January 1, 2013. Operative January 1, 2014, by Sec. 3 of Ch. 180.)

5980.
  

An association has standing to institute, defend, settle, or intervene in litigation, arbitration, mediation, or administrative proceedings in its own name as the real party in interest and without joining with it the members, in matters pertaining to the following:

(a) Enforcement of the governing documents.

(b) Damage to the common area.

(c) Damage to a separate interest that the association is obligated to maintain or repair.

(d) Damage to a separate interest that arises out of, or is integrally related to, damage to the common area or a separate interest that the association is obligated to maintain or repair.

(Added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 180, Sec. 2. (AB 805) Effective January 1, 2013. Operative January 1, 2014, by Sec. 3 of Ch. 180.)

5985.
  

(a) In an action maintained by an association pursuant to subdivision (b), (c), or (d) of Section 5980, the amount of damages recovered by the association shall be reduced by the amount of damages allocated to the association or its managing agents in direct proportion to their percentage of fault based upon principles of comparative fault. The comparative fault of the association or its managing agents may be raised by way of defense, but shall not be the basis for a cross-action or separate action against the association or its managing agents for contribution or implied indemnity, where the only damage was sustained by the association or its members. It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this subdivision to require that comparative fault be pleaded as an affirmative defense, rather than a separate cause of action, where the only damage was sustained by the association or its members.

(b) In an action involving damages described in subdivision (b), (c), or (d) of Section 5980, the defendant or cross-defendant may allege and prove the comparative fault of the association or its managing agents as a setoff to the liability of the defendant or cross-defendant even if the association is not a party to the litigation or is no longer a party whether by reason of settlement, dismissal, or otherwise.

(c) Subdivisions (a) and (b) apply to actions commenced on or after January 1, 1993.

(d) Nothing in this section affects a person’s liability under Section 1431, or the liability of the association or its managing agent for an act or omission that causes damages to another.

(Added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 180, Sec. 2. (AB 805) Effective January 1, 2013. Operative January 1, 2014, by Sec. 3 of Ch. 180.)

5986.
  

(a) Subject to compliance with Section 6150, which requires the board to provide notice of a meeting with the members to discuss, among other things, problems that may lead to the filing of a civil action, before the board files a civil action against a declarant or other developer, or within 30 days after it files the action, if the association has reason to believe that the applicable statute of limitations will expire, and notwithstanding any provision to the contrary in the governing documents, the board shall have the authority to commence and pursue a claim, civil action, arbitration, prelitigation process pursuant to Section 6000 or Title 7 (commencing with Section 895) of Part 2 of Division 2, or other legal proceeding against a declarant, developer, or builder of a common interest development. If the board includes members appointed by, or affiliated with, the declarant, developer, or builder, the decision and authority to commence and pursue legal proceedings shall be vested solely in the nonaffiliated board members.

(b) The governing documents shall not impose any preconditions or limitations on the board’s authority to commence and pursue any claim, civil action, arbitration, prelitigation process pursuant to Section 6000 or Title 7 (commencing with Section 895) of Part 2 of Division 2, or other legal proceeding against a declarant, developer, or builder of a common interest development. Any limitation or precondition, including, but not limited to, requiring a membership vote as a prerequisite to, or otherwise providing the declarant, developer, or builder with veto authority over, the board’s commencement and pursuit of a claim, civil action, arbitration, prelitigation process, or legal proceeding against the declarant, developer, or builder, or any incidental decision of the board, including, but not limited to, retaining legal counsel or incurring costs or expenses, is unenforceable, null, and void. The failure to comply with those limitations or preconditions, if only, shall not be asserted as a defense to any claim or action described in this section.

(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) or (b), any provision in the governing documents imposing limitations or preconditions on the board’s authority to commence and pursue claims shall be valid and enforceable if the provision is adopted solely by the nondeclarant affiliated members of the association and the provision is adopted in accordance with the requirements necessary to amend the governing documents of the association.

(d) This section applies to all governing documents, whether recorded before or after the effective date of this section, and applies retroactively to claims initiated before the effective date of this section, except if those claims have been resolved through an executed settlement, a final arbitration decision, or a final judicial decision on the merits.

(e) Nothing in this section extends any applicable statute of limitation or repose to file or initiate any claim, civil action, arbitration, prelitigation process, or other legal proceeding. Nothing in this section shall affect any other obligations of an association contained in Title 7 (commencing with Section 895) of Part 2 of Division 2, or any other provision in the covenants, conditions, and restrictions of the association related to arbitration or other alternative dispute resolution procedures.

(Added by Stats. 2019, Ch. 207, Sec. 2. (SB 326) Effective January 1, 2020.)

CIVCivil Code - CIV4