Fee Award to HOA Reversed Though Plaintiff’s Action Frivolous

   There was an interesting twist in a case brought by a homeowner against his HOA last week. The homeowner brought a civil action, asserting violations of association rules and the relevant statutory scheme. The trial court granted a second demurrer without leave to amend and granted the HOA attorney’s fees of approximately $15,000 pursuant to Civil Code section 1636.09(b). The trial court specifically found that the homeowner’s causes of action under Civil Code section 1636.9 were frivolous because the homeowner knew when the action was filed they were barred by the one-year statute of limitations. The appellate court reluctantly reversed the fee award in That v. Alders Maintenance Assn. Continue reading