Associations may amend their articles and/or bylaws to eliminate proxy voting altogether. (Corp. Code §7613(a).) Arguments in favor of eliminating proxies include:
1. Fraudulent Signatures. Proxy forms may be signed by using unverifiable signatures. By statute, signatures for proxies now include "typewriting, telegraphic transmission, or otherwise." (Civ. Code §5130(a)(2).)
2. Fraudulent Voting. The required two-page format for proxies creates the potential for election fraud. Since there is no way to verify that proxyholders actually vote their ballots according to the owner's instructions, the proxyholder can change an owner's vote.
Recommendation: Since ballots count toward quorum (Civ. Code §5115(b)), proxies are no longer needed for that purpose. To simplify elections, associations should also consider eliminating cumulative voting and quorum requirements for the election of directors.
ASSISTANCE: Associations needing legal assistance can contact us. To stay current with issues affecting community associations, subscribe to the Davis-Stirling Newsletter.