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Our Clients Ask Us: Hardship Exception for Maintenance Fees

Question:  We have a member who is delinquent in their association maintenance fees.  The Board feels bad for the owner and their current situation.  We want to make a hardship exception for this individual.  Can we make a hardship exception for this owner to delay payments or to waive late fees?

Answer: Yes.

The Association may make a hardship exception for a member that is experiencing financial difficulty for any number of reasons, if they choose.  However, doing so can cause MANY issues, and the reasons for doing so MUST be clearly documented.

As harsh as it may sound, in a situation where the owner truly does have a valid reason for the non-payment, you may be creating a precedent for other members to exploit.  Payment plans are generally a better option, rather than making an exception.  In addition, the Board must be careful in making exceptions to waive late fees and setting up payment plans because, in doing so, delaying collection can cause cash-flow problems for the Association.

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Ott & Associates Co., LPA

1300 E 9th St, Suite 1520
Cleveland, OH 44114

Ph: 216-771-2600
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