QUESTION: Our board and management refuse to post the agenda for board meetings on our website. They say they are abiding by the Civil Code because they post the agenda by the mailboxes, which is a long walk from my unit. – Tonya W.
ANSWER: The board is correct, it can give notice of the time and place of its meetings by “general delivery.” (Civ. Code § 4920(c).) General delivery or general notice is defined to include posting in a prominent location accessible to all members. (Civ. Code § 4045(a)(3).)
Website Notice Allowed. However, the Legislature recognized that we are in an age of electronic communications and amended the Davis-Stirling Act to allow, effective January 1, 2022, meeting notices and agendas to also be posted on an association’s website, if so designated in an association’s annual policy statement. (Civ. Code § 4045(a)(5).).
Electronic Notice. Even though your association is refusing to electronically post notices & agendas, it does not mean you have to walk to the mailbox kiosk to check for them. You can notify management in writing to give you meeting notices/agendas directly. (Civ. Code § 4045(b).) An email qualifies as written notice. (Civ. Code § 1633.7.) You can require notices and agendas be sent to you by first-class mail or by email. (Civ. Code § 4040(a).) Associations are required to alert members to this option in their annual policy statement. (Civ. Code § 5310(a)(4).)
Preferred Method. At the same time, owners are required to annually provide written notice to the association of their preferred delivery method (mail or email) and a secondary delivery method (mail or email). (Civ. Code § 4041(a).) This is administratively burdensome for everyone. The Legislature has a habit of complicating everything it touches. I suspect this requirement will rarely, if ever, by complied with by owners. It means the association will chose the default method for delivery unless notified otherwise
RECOMMENDATION: Since communications in the rest of the world are increasingly electronic, boards should supplement paper meeting notices in public locations with email and website notices. Because these forms of notice are more convenient for recipients, they are more likely to be read.
DISCLAIMER. The Davis-Stirling.com Newsletter by ADAMS | STIRLING PLC provides commentary only, not legal advice. For legal advice, you’ll need to hire legal counsel. You can hire ADAMS | STIRLING PLC; Keep in mind they are considered corporate counsel to associations only.