Regulation of HOAs by the Government
The Office of the Attorney General has jurisdiction over California Corporations Code issues involving incorporated homeowner associations. Because their jurisdiction is limited to enforcement of the California Corporations Code, the Attorney General does not enforce the Davis-Stirling Act because the Act involves the Civil Code not the California Corporations Code. Complaints about associations that violate the California Corporations Code may be submitted to the Attorney General’s Public Inquiry Unit.
Office of the Attorney General
California Department of Justice
Attn: Public Inquiry Unit
P.O. Box 944255
Sacramento, CA 94244-2550
Department of Real Estate
The Department of Real Estate does not regulate homeowner associations or HOA management companies, nor does it have jurisdiction over the enforcement of CC&Rs, bylaws or Civil Code Sections. The DRE is a licensing and regulatory agency empowered to discipline real estate brokers and agents. The DRE is also involved in overseeing developers of common interest developments. Once a developer turns over control of an association to its members, DRE’s oversight ends.
When a developer creates a homeowner association. he or she creates CC&Rs that dictate whether the assessments will be equal or variable based upon square footage. If the developer wants the assessments to be variable, based on square footage, the California Department of Real Estate (DRE) must approve the unequal assessments and the approved formula must then be set forth in the approved CC&Rs.
While the courts are not regulatory. agencies, they are regularly used to address the legal rights and duties of parties, provide injunctive relief and award damages. Some matters involving the Davis-Stirling Act can be addressed by small claims courts, while others must be addressed through superior court following an offer of alternative dispute resolution.
San Diego HOA Management