Condo Media - May 2018 - 34

ALL FOR ONE

W

While we had their attention, we asked
them to consider the broader question
of how boards can get the most value
from their attorneys, and the equally
important question of how to create
and sustain a good working relationship between attorneys and board
members, and between attorneys and
association managers.
KERRY AUGUSTINE,
CMCA, AMS, PCAM,
Vice President,
Mercantile
Property
Management
Augustine identifies three ingredients
essential to creating a constructive
relationship between condominium
boards and association managers and
attorneys, and they all begin with the
letter C: communication, confidence,
and cost.
Capable attorneys know what they
are doing, she says, and are proactive in
their handling of legal issues. What distinguishes the best attorneys, she believes, is their ability to keep managers
and boards informed-to communicate
with them consistently and update
them regularly on issues the attorneys
are working on and board members are
concerned about.

34

CONDOMEDIA

Board members can be impatient,
she notes, especially when it comes to
the collection of delinquent accounts.
"They want their money and they
want to know what is taking so long.
No manager wants to have to chase an
attorney for updates. Communication
is a huge issue," she says. "There is
no question that it makes for a more
harmonious relationship."
Communication also helps to foster
the second ingredient on Augustine's
list-confidence-in both the attorney's
abilities and in his or her commitment
to the association. Communication
between boards and their attorneys
works best, she suggests, if the
manager is the point person in that
process, relaying questions from board
members to the attorney and conveying information from the attorney to
the board.
This is both efficient and costeffective, she notes, avoiding the need
for the attorney to field questions
individually from board members or
to meet regularly with the board-and
avoiding the legal bills that would
result from those interactions.
"Managers aren't attorneys," Augustine says, but experienced managers
can provide "common sense" answers
to many basic legal questions. They

also know when an attorney's input
is needed. "If we're dealing with a
complicated or controversial issue or
an issue on which board members have
a lot of questions, I'll suggest that they
meet with the attorney."
The relationship between a board
and its attorney is most likely to be
strained, she says, when the attorney
is not sufficiently responsive, or when
board members perceive that to be
the case. That is more a theoretical
concern than one she has encountered
with her association clients, Augustine
emphasizes. "The attorneys we deal
with are so good and the relationships
with board members are so positive,
[responsiveness] isn't an issue. Our association clients have had really good
luck with their attorneys," she adds.
"There are no real negatives with any
of them."
GARY DADDARIO,
ESQ., CCAL
Partner,
Winer &
Bennett, LLP
Daddario agrees that
managers should be the liaison between
boards and their attorneys. "That's part
of their job," he says. "It happens naturally." But he also thinks it is important



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
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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
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Condo Media - May 2018 - 40
Condo Media - May 2018 - 41
Condo Media - May 2018 - 42
Condo Media - May 2018 - 43
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Condo Media - May 2018 - 45
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Condo Media - May 2018 - 58
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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
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