Condo Media - May 2018 - 28

' Magic in Mediation'
A NEUTRAL PARTY
The most common conflicts in condominium associations pit owners vs.
other owners, or owners vs. boards. In
the former (owner vs. owner), boards
are often dragged unwillingly into the
disputes. Siding with neither party,
Brooks suggests, the board itself
or the board's attorney can act as a
mediator, without incurring the added
expense of hiring an outside mediator.
Although the attorney represents
the board, he or she can be viewed as
"neutral" in these situations, Brooks
notes, because the board itself is
a neutral party. Even in conflicts
between boards and owners, when association attorneys are not likely to be
viewed as neutral, they can sometimes
play the mediator's role, according to
Edmund Allcock, a partner at Marcus
Errico Emmer Brooks P.C., who heads
the firm's litigation department.
He cites as an example the Rhode
Island statute requiring associations

to hold a due process hearing before
fining owners or bringing some covenant enforcement actions. "This isn't
technically a mediation," he says, "but
it can turn into one," with the attorney
mediating the dispute. The attorney
must set the right tone, he says, making it clear to the owner that "this isn't
an inquisition-it's an opportunity for
the owner to talk to the board. [The
message should be], 'we want to hear
from you.'"
The key, he says, is bringing the parties together.
"Nothing is worse than having a
faceless entity-a board that sits on
high-sending enforcement letters
and fine notices by mail. When you
have a face-to-face meeting, positions
will often soften, and conflicts will
often get resolved." If not, he suggests,
the board's demonstrated effort to
negotiate a remedy will bolster its
position should the conflict wind up
in court.

Practicing Condominium
Association, Real Estate, Litigation,
Employment & Bankruptcy Law

Attorneys left to right: Dan López, David Chenelle, Rob Anctil, Scott Eriksen, Charlie Perkins, Jr., Rhonda Duddy, Kim Alley.

Solving your problems today and
strengthening your association for tomorrow.
We bring the knowledge that we have
obtained from decades of experience of
representing more than 750 associations
to each client's concern.
6 Lyberty Way, Suite 201 | Westford, MA 01886 | Tel (978) 496-2000 | info@perkinslawpc.com

28

CONDOMEDIA

UNCERTAIN OUTCOMES
While some condominium owners can
be stubbornly litigious, some boards
can be equally so. Confident that they
will win the legal argument and collect
court costs and fees when they do,
board members will sometimes insist
on following owners, or leading them,
into a court battle both sides would be
better off avoiding. But this scenario
doesn't always play out as expected,
Marquis points out, because legal outcomes are not predictable. "Litigation is
a role of the dice," she says. "There are
no guarantees."
A dispute she describes as "Jingles, the
most expensive dog in New England,"
illustrates her point. A New Hampshire
condominium association went to
court to enforce a no-pet rule against
an owner, who had a dog. The association won every court decision, but the
owner kept appealing, all the way to the
New Hampshire Supreme Court. The
association ultimately prevailed and
should have recovered thousands of
dollars in legal fees, Marquis notes, but
the owner declared bankruptcy "and the
association got nothing." Associations
that become embroiled in extensive
battles like this often find that "even
when they win, they don't win," she says.
"It's impossible to distinguish the victors
from the vanquished."
Mark Rosen, who is of counsel to
Boston-based Schofield Law Group,
LLC, has seen that scenario play out, to
negative effect, with many condominium associations. In one case, he notes,
an association board refused to allow a
prospective buyer to install a chair lift
he was probably entitled to have and
was willing to install at his own expense.
Ignoring Rosen's advice to avoid litigation, the board insisted on a court fight.
"The association could have paid for the
chair lift for what it cost them in legal
fees," he says.
Unlike many association attorneys,
Rosen is a staunch advocate of mediation
for his clients. "Some form of alternative
dispute resolution is absolutely the way
to go for condominiums," he says. "Litigation should be the last resort."



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Condo Media - May 2018

Contents
Condo Media - May 2018 - Cover1
Condo Media - May 2018 - Cover2
Condo Media - May 2018 - Contents
Condo Media - May 2018 - 2
Condo Media - May 2018 - 3
Condo Media - May 2018 - 4
Condo Media - May 2018 - 5
Condo Media - May 2018 - 6
Condo Media - May 2018 - 7
Condo Media - May 2018 - 8
Condo Media - May 2018 - 9
Condo Media - May 2018 - 10
Condo Media - May 2018 - 11
Condo Media - May 2018 - 12
Condo Media - May 2018 - 13
Condo Media - May 2018 - 14
Condo Media - May 2018 - 15
Condo Media - May 2018 - 16
Condo Media - May 2018 - 17
Condo Media - May 2018 - 18
Condo Media - May 2018 - 19
Condo Media - May 2018 - 20
Condo Media - May 2018 - 21
Condo Media - May 2018 - 22
Condo Media - May 2018 - 23
Condo Media - May 2018 - 24
Condo Media - May 2018 - 25
Condo Media - May 2018 - 26
Condo Media - May 2018 - 27
Condo Media - May 2018 - 28
Condo Media - May 2018 - 29
Condo Media - May 2018 - 30
Condo Media - May 2018 - 31
Condo Media - May 2018 - 32
Condo Media - May 2018 - 33
Condo Media - May 2018 - 34
Condo Media - May 2018 - 35
Condo Media - May 2018 - 36
Condo Media - May 2018 - 37
Condo Media - May 2018 - 38
Condo Media - May 2018 - 39
Condo Media - May 2018 - 40
Condo Media - May 2018 - 41
Condo Media - May 2018 - 42
Condo Media - May 2018 - 43
Condo Media - May 2018 - 44
Condo Media - May 2018 - 45
Condo Media - May 2018 - 46
Condo Media - May 2018 - 47
Condo Media - May 2018 - 48
Condo Media - May 2018 - 49
Condo Media - May 2018 - 50
Condo Media - May 2018 - 51
Condo Media - May 2018 - 52
Condo Media - May 2018 - 53
Condo Media - May 2018 - 54
Condo Media - May 2018 - 55
Condo Media - May 2018 - 56
Condo Media - May 2018 - 57
Condo Media - May 2018 - 58
Condo Media - May 2018 - 59
Condo Media - May 2018 - 60
Condo Media - May 2018 - 61
Condo Media - May 2018 - 62
Condo Media - May 2018 - 63
Condo Media - May 2018 - 64
Condo Media - May 2018 - Cover3
Condo Media - May 2018 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202006
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202005
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202004
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_202001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201911_v2
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201909
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201908
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201907
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201906
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201905
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201904
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201903
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201902
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201901
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201812
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201811
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201810
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201808
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201807
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201806
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201805
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201804
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201803
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201802
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201801
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201712
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201711
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201710
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201709
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201707
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201706
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201705
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201704
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201703
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201702
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201701
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201612
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201611
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201610
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201609
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201608
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201606
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201605
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201604
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201603
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201602
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201601
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201511
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201510
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201509
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201508
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201507
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201505
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201504
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201503
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201502
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201501
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201411
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201410
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201409
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201408
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201407
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201406
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201405
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201404
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201403
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201402
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201401
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201311
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201310
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201309
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201308
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201307
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201306
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201305
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201303
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201302
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201212
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201211
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201210
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201209
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201208
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201207
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201206
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201205
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201204
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201203
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201202
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201201
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201111
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201110
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201109
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201108
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201107
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201106
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201105
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201104
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201006
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201005
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_200904
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_201001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_200912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_200911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_200910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_200909
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/mcneill/condomedia_200908
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com