Did you contact your car insurance? Most times your insurance company will contact the insurance company of the board.
Hopefully your Association has invested in video cameras positioned at entrance and exit gates. Sometimes we have drivers try to rush through two cars at a time but it's on camera. No cameras, you need witnesses but ask your attorney first before wasting your time.
Good quality cameras are a must with full property coverage. Good luck.
I do believe that I would put it into my own auto insurance company's hands by putting in a claim for the damages. If they feel that it was a malfunction of the gate, they will get the money from the association insurance co. and it won't go against you.
Your dispute is with the condo association, not their insurer, so talking directly to the insurer is probably a waste of time, and they will just side with the condo association anyway. Start by sending a formal written demand letter by certified mail directed at the condo association (mailed to whoever is the official representative or agent of the association). In your letter, explain why you think it's their fault, and give them a deadline to resolve the situation. If they ignore you and you have to sue them, you'll name the condo association in your small claims complaint. Just make sure you have clear evidence that the association is at fault. I had a similar situation where I had to sue in small claims court. It took me almost a year and a lot of aggravation, but they finally paid me right before our court date, so I didn't actually have to go to court.
In whatever course of action you decide to follow remember to quote the specific sections of your governing documents that describes who is responsible for what. Surely any damage caused by the gate is damage caused by part of the common elements and is therefore the responsibility of the association. Any idea why the gate closed on your car or if it has happened to other owners at other times? That would be evidence to your benefit.
As an Association President, I'm well aware what free advise is worth...nothing. However, I suggest this; you have auto insurance so your covered for the damage. Turn it into your insurance company and get on with the rest of your life.
Every gate is required to be equipped with proxsimity sensors preventing it from closing on a vehicle passing through the driveway. It that system failed, your insurance company's investigation will uncover the problem.
You bought the auto insurance, use it. GR
You can file a claim with the HOA insurance company and the HOA should be willing to give you the name of the agent. Have you contacted your car insurance company? Usually they would be willing to communicate with the HOA insurance company to determine the best way to proceed.
Don't expect the HOA just to take your word on it and write a check. As a HOA President myself I can say that I would be empathetic but due process has to be followed because I represent the interest of all owners.
In considering possible court action, the first thing to determine is how the gate knows when to close. Is it on a timer or does it actually sense when a vehicle passes. The reason why you need to know is because this will help you determine on how to proceed. In other words, did you experience this issue because there was a real problem or did you just pull away too slow? In a court of law, unless other people have experienced this issue or a real defect is found, the tables could get turned where you are found guilty of negligence and the defendant gets off.
And of course, realize that when suing your HOA you are actually suing yourself such that any judgement in your favor may result in everyone's assessment being increased.
You can request a special meeting by sending a certified letter to each of the board members. If they do not honor your request this will be proof that you are trying resolve the situation at hand. Gather all of the evidence, pictures, time and date of this accident and present them a nice little package. Make copies of everything, send certified with return receipt requested.
Give them 30 days to respond. In the meantime you are going to contact your insurance company to help with the issue. In most cases you will be able to get your car fixed (since it is under $1000.00) and then get it all back from the condo insurance. you should not have to wait to get your damages fixed. Now in the event the assoc does not respond you have all this to name them in small claims court.
We try and run our assoc correctly and it really makes me angry when othe associations do this and makes a bad name for the rest of us. We hold insurance policies for this reason, stop acting like you own our right and our money. We all pay into this association, why can't we all work together? Geish lover stop giving associations a bad name and a bad area to live in.
Good luck and if you do things right and follow thru, you will get the results you need. Some Board people are bullies.
We are not...........
Did you stop your vehicle under the gate? If so why? If it opened and then closed on your car while you were moving thru (without stopping) then yes it is the associations reponsibility. If the gate opened and then you delayed driving thru for whatever reason than it is your fault.
You have very good valid points along with the others
If that were us we would probably pay out of association fees before going thru insurance. We have a $1000.00
Deductible. So that would defeat our purpose of filing a claim. If the gate was faulty and this was the case then pay the claim, get the gate fixed, and move on. It's not that difficult to do. Some board members like to look important and be the bullies they are. It's all of our money and when something is the fault of the association then you need to own it.
Yes and you are right sueing the association would result in lawyers fees and bigger cost to the other members.
So woulnn't you think the bigger thing to do is pay up and stop trying to find loop holes, the guys car was damagesd.so stop trying to drag out the issue. Be an honest board not a bully board.
I like our board, for we all work together not against each other. Have a great day
My comment above is assuming your gate is of the timer kingd and not the sensor kind. Sensor failure would be the associations responsibility reguardless of what the associations documents claim.
Sue the board - yes the hoa is responsible since this is hoa property invold - these people on board can not denied you due process- file claim against HOa insurance and then file claim against board members for BOD insurance and when the board has to raise HOA assesment be sure to post notice/flyer out in locations tell paying membership due to the board lack of following procedures the BOD cause the HOA yearly assesments to go up - rally all the paying members to against BOD at meeting place - if you are an owner, you have the right to protest against the BOD- but be sure that you are prepared to take their place as a BOD - Do' not do this if you are not willing to step up to the plate to take over
Wow jim, pretty strong stuff. Why are people always ready to tell other people to sue, disparage board of director members, and be "right fighters", and why does anyone think board members in this situation are bullies, when they do not know the other side of the story as seen from the other side. Original writer: Don't know if you made your report to the board in writing or received a reply in writing. If not, you probably should do so, even now to get some "ammunition", or at least a very clear board position on paper you can use should you decide to continue to try to collect or sue. Then if you must "sue", go the small claims court route, far cheaper for you, especially if you lose.
Don't let anyone discourage you from suing in small claims court. Assuming that the condo association is truly at fault in this case, and that you have made a good faith effort to resolve the issue with them, and that you have a written record of your attempts to resolve the issue, then you may have no other choice.
Ron's comment "when suing your HOA you are actually suing yourself such that any judgment in your favor may result in everyone's assessment being increased" should not discourage you if you have a meritorious case and are merely seeking compensation for your damages. Should a single condo owner have to suffer the expense of $1000 when he was not at fault and the condo association was responsible? Isn’t it fairer that the damages be shared amongst all the owners in such a case? $1000 in compensation for one's damages should not result in a special assessment, and if it does, then the condo property is being mismanaged. Assuming that it wasn't the original poster's negligence that caused $1000 in damage, why should he be the villain in trying to set it straight? If the condo association screwed up, it needs to own up and pay for it, plain and simple. Again, I am assuming that the condo association was at fault, and that such fault can be clearly established.
Enjoyed reading the comments. My opinion: The gentleman who suggested to check if there was video evidence of the "accident" was the most lucid response. Video evidence, if available would help either your or the HOA. As an example, we had a similar accident involving our gate. In this case the person actually drove through the gate before it was all the way up. s/he took off the arm of the gate. We have had at least two other gate incidences... one where a moving company crew became exasperated and litterally tore the gate off the foundation in their hurry to leave the property.
Second best comment. Turn a claim in to your insurance agent and let them handle it for you.
My humble opinion on the matter: Without recorded visual evidence or witnesses to the accident, you will have a problem showing fault.