Statutes

Federal statutes such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, Fair Housing Act, Over the Air Reception Devices Rule, Freedom to Display the American Flag Act, Servicemembers Civil Relief Act  and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act all directly impact common interest community (CIC) governance.


Many of the aforementioned federal statutes have been passed and/or been updated in the past two decades and often supersede state statutes.

State CIC and nonprofit corporation statutes define the fundamental governance framework that allows for the existence of common interest communities.  Additional state statues govern specific property rights, human rights, fair debt collection practices, solar easements and other legal provisions. 


CIC-related statutory governance began with a focus on development in the early 1960's, then shifted to regulating developers in the 1970's and has since evolved a more comprehensive statutory framework in many states through adoption of provisions that are both unique to each state government and also through the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act and Uniform Condominium Act (versions adopted over decades across a handful of states starting in the 1980's).  Read more: WHAT ARE CICs?!


Earlier WA State CIC statutes (RCW 64.32 and RCW 64.38) are relatively lean compared to the 1990 Condominium Act (RCW 64.34) and the 2018 Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act (WUCIOA - RCW 64.90).  In addition to these statutes, the WA Nonprofit Corporation Act (RCW 24.03A) plays a role (for incorporated associations) in addition certain other state laws.


EXAMPLES: What's in my State Statues?

County and city ordinances and municipal codes are relatively narrow with regard to applicability to common interest communities, but their relevance should not be underestimated.


During the global COVID-19 pandemic, some counties like King located in WA State, took measures above and beyond state mandates for prophylactic measures (face covering requirements and more).  More generally, county and city ordinances govern aspects of modern life that we sometimes take for granted.


EXAMPLES: What's in my County and City Ordinances and Municipal Codes?

WHICH STATUTE CONTROLS?

Conflicts between various state statutes are often reconciled according to a hierarchy within CIC-specific statutes.


RCW 64.34.300 - Unit Owners' Association Organization

... The association shall be organized as a profit or nonprofit corporation. In case of any conflict between Title 23B RCW, the business corporation act, chapter 24.03A RCW, the nonprofit corporation act, or chapter 24.06 RCW, the nonprofit miscellaneous and mutual corporations act, and this chapter, this chapter shall control.


RCW 64.90.400 - Unit Owners' Association Organization

(3) The association must have a board and be organized as a for-profit or nonprofit corporation or limited liability company.

(4) In case of any conflict between Title 23B RCW or chapter 23.86, 24.03A, 24.06, or 25.15 RCW and this chapter, this chapter controls.

CIC Governance Hierarchy


GOVERNANCE HIERARCHY: Federal Statutes > State Statutes > County and City / Municipal Codes & Ordinances >

Case Law > Declaration > Bylaws > Rules & Regulations > Policies & Resolutions > Procedures > Board Discretion

FREE Download: Governance Hierarchy Pyramid

Statutory & Governing Documents Hierarchy.pdf

FEDERAL & STATE CIC STATUTE LOOKUP

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WASHINGTON COMMON INTEREST COMMUNITY STATUTES

Recent Washington State LEGISLATION

--- 2023 ---


--- 2022 ---

Concerning electric vehicle charging stations in common interest communities.



--- 2021 ---

Concerning nonprofit corporations.  [SECTION 5204 became effective July 1, 2022.]  CHANGE SUMMARY


Getting your owners to opt into electronic notice can be very helpful for a number of reasons.  LEARN MORE


Addressing foreclosure protections for homeowners in common interest communities.


Although not applicable to all types of common interest communities, this bill could establish a precedent directly impacting the ability to evict tenants unless there are four or more violations committed in a twelve month period.


While 99% of the WUCIOA statute applies only to communities formed after July 1, 2018 and to those that adopt it, RCW 64.90.525 (Budgets and Assessments) and RCW 64.90.545 (Reserve Study) retroactively apply to ALL Washington State CICs.  

N.B.  Failure to observe these requirements jeopardizes your annual budget ratification process!


WA State Statutes Infographic