Can HOA board members be sued?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can HOA board members be sued?

Several months of common sewer line backups damaged a homeowner’s inside unit.

The HOA hired a licensed plumber. Damages were reported at a meeting to a board member The president whom informed me that it was not the HOA’s responsibility to repair. The homeowner made a claim on the master insurance policy. The HOA is contesting the claim. I communicated with the HOA and contracted a plumber who made repairs. I provided pictures and the plumber’s information to the insurance company. Can a homeowner request pain and suffering from the HOA insurer for the HOA contesting to avoid making a claim for damages?

Asked on March 25, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Georgia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The board may be sued; however, individual HOA board members are protected from legal liability unless they were acting outside the scope of their responsibilities or authority (basically, not doing or contesting something which the board could do or contest), which does not appear to be the case here. There is no compensation for "pain and suffering" for disputes over property damage claims or insurance claims--pain and suffering is only available for personal injury (e.g. assaults or accidents) or when there is a deliberate attempt to inflict emotional harm (e.g. stalking or harassment).

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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