What to Do with an ACC Dispute — By Samantha Brown, Esq. —

ith warmer weather comes an increase in home repairs and

modifications. While improvements

and maintenance are often appreciated and allowed within associations, there are always restrictions involved and always people with misguided conviction that believe the association’s restrictions regarding these repairs and modifications do not apply to them. Whether your community is a condo or HOA, your association most likely has an ACC or ARC (Architectural Review/Control Committee hereinafter referred to collectively as “ACC”) and have most likely had disputes with owners surrounding their home improvement decisions or even with the general existence of the ACC regulations.

For most associations, their ability to pre-approve modifications or alterations is found in their Declaration or CC&R’s and many associations also have more detailed restrictions, procedures and standards in their Rules and Regulations or some other board resolution. Each association is different, so please review your association’s governing documents for your community’s

32 Community Associations Journal | July-August 2021

Gone Astray

specific requirements and procedures and/or consult your association’s attorney, as this article is a simple overview that provides generic information regarding ACC issues and disputes that arise within associations.

The ACC can either deny, approve, or request additional information.

To submit an ACC request, owners will typically present their plan, dimensions, contractor’s information, paint samples, etc. to the ACC for review. The ACC can either deny, approve, or request additional information. Please note, many associations have a specific time-period in which a response must be provided to the owner, even if it is a request for additional information, so make sure you are aware of and follow any applicable response deadlines.

When an ACC Request is Denied

The rest of this article will focus on what to do when an ACC request is denied. I typically see this play out in one of four ways: 1. The owner accepts the denial and does not make the modification;

2. The owner modifies their request and resubmits their application or attempts to work with the ACC to do some version of their proposed modification;

3. The owner sues the association; or 4. The owner ignores the rejection and does the work anyway.

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