You have certain legal rights if you’re in a homeowner’s association (HOA). Sometimes it’s easy to forget that you’re not just a tenant in your community—you own your home. As such, you have certain protections under state and federal law. Here are eight legal rights you have as an HOA member:

1. The Right to a Copy of the Governing Documents

When you purchase a home in an hoa austin community, you have the right to receive a copy of the community’s governing documents. These documents include the declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&Rs), as well as the bylaws. The governing documents lay out the community’s rules, so it’s essential to be familiar with them.

2. The Right to a Fair and democratic Election Process

Homeowners have the right to participate in a fair and democratic election process for the HOA board of directors. The election process should be conducted according to the rules in the community’s governing documents.

3. The Right to Access HOA Records

As a homeowner in an HOA community, you have the right to access certain association records. These records include the minutes of board meetings, the association’s budget, and the list of owners.

Sometimes, accessing HOA records can be difficult. If the HOA refuses to provide you with the records you request, you may need to consult an attorney.

4. The Right to a Prompt Resolution of Complaints

If you have a complaint about the HOA, you have the right to have that complaint addressed promptly and fairly. The HOA should have a process in place for handling complaints from homeowners.

You may find that your HOA is unresponsive to your complaint. If this happens, you may need to consult an attorney.

5. The Right to Due Process

If the HOA takes action against you, such as fining you or suspending your privileges, you have the right to due process. This means you have the right to a fair and impartial hearing before the HOA board.

6. The Right to an Attorney

It may be a surprise, but you have the right to an attorney in HOA matters. If you’re facing disciplinary action from the HOA, you can hire an attorney to represent you.

It might sound extreme, but sometimes hiring an attorney is the only way to get the HOA to take your complaint seriously.

7. The Right to Sue the HOA

Any time you believe the HOA has violated your rights; you have the right to sue the association. This is the last resort, but it’s essential to know that you have this option if you need it.

8. The Right to Amend the Governing Documents

Sometimes it’s necessary to amend the community’s governing documents. For example, if the HOA is not following the CC&Rs, a homeowner may want to propose an amendment to the CC&Rs.

Amending the governing documents is not easy, but it can be done if enough homeowners favor the amendment.

These are just a few of the legal rights you have as a member of an HOA. If you have any questions about your rights, you should consult an attorney specializing in HOA law. They will be able to advise you of your rights and help you protect them.