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HOAs and New Jersey’s Sunshine Law 

On Behalf of | May 26, 2024 | HOA/Condo Law

The “Sunshine Law,” also known as the Open Public Meetings Act, grants the general public the right to attend meetings and observe public bodies’ decision-making processes, such as Homeowners’ Associations (HOAs). The goal is to promote transparency and accountability within governing organizations. All HOA meetings, including annual and board meetings, fall under The Sunshine Law and must be accessible to the property’s renters and owners.

HOAs in New Jersey must comply with The Sunshine Law, which imposes penalties on those who violate it and encourages transparency and communication. This promotes increased involvement of residents in community activities and enhances understanding of local issues.

Closed sessions for HOAs are permitted

HOA board meetings typically consist of two parts: an open session and a closed session. HOA members are welcome to participate in the open session to join public discussions and engage with the board. The closed session, also referred to as an executive session, is restricted to HOA board members only. These meetings may occur before or after the public board meetings, and the presence of the HOA manager may be intermittent.

The HOA board is not obligated to provide invitations to all individuals for these occasions. Sensitive topics are often discussed in closed sessions. These topics may include outstanding debts, tenant disputes and legal matters. The potential breach of confidentiality arising from these talks might pose difficulties due to the sensitive nature of the topics.

Must HOAs comply with The Sunshine Laws?

Homeowners Associations (HOAs) are obligated to adhere to The Sunshine Law. The legislation promotes the principles of openness, communication, and civic engagement in matters concerning local communities. Any infractions that are reported to them are also liable to receive penalties. Consequently, individuals are encouraged to seek guidance from someone who possesses a comprehensive understanding of the legislation.