When a member is delinquent in the payment of assessments and when after a duly noticed hearing the association suspends the member's privileges, it cannot include suspension of their access to their residence.
Except as otherwise provided in law, an order of the court, or an order pursuant to a final and binding arbitration decision, an association may not deny a member or occupant physical access to the member’s or occupant’s separate interest, either by restricting access through the common area to the separate interest, or by restricting access solely to the separate interest. (Civ. Code § 4510)
A similar provision can be found in landlord-tenant laws (Civ. Code 789.3(b)(1)) which includes penalties up to $100 per day if a landlord locks out a tenant. Even though your association does not own the unit, California courts have analogized associations to landlords and held them to the same standards. (Frances T v. Village Green.)
Common Areas. Members can, however, be denied access to common area facilities. If the residence is being leased, suspension of a delinquent owner's privileges automatically extends to the tenant. Notice to a suspended member should also include notice to their tenant.
ASSISTANCE: Associations needing legal assistance can contact us. To stay current with issues affecting community associations, subscribe to the Davis-Stirling Newsletter.