Lawyers at Board Meetings
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LAWYERS AT BOARD MEETINGS

Lawyers representing members or non-members do not have a right to attend board meetings--the right to attend is reserved to members only. (Civ. Code §4925; SB Liberty v. Isla Verde.)

By Proxy. Members cannot get around the exclusion by sending their lawyer with a "proxy" since proxies apply only to membership meetings, not board meetings. Moreover, proxies for membership meetings are restricted to members. (Civ. Code §5130(a)(1).)

Potential Ethics Violation. Lawyers who attend board or membership meetings on behalf of a client could be subject to discipline by the State Bar for violation of Rules of Professional Conduct 2-100:

(A) While representing a client, a member shall not communicate directly or indirectly about the subject of the representation with a party the member knows to be represented by another lawyer in the matter, unless the member has the consent of the other lawyer.

(B) For purposes of this rule, a "party" includes:

(1) An officer, director, or managing agent of a corporation or association, and a partner or managing agent of a partnership; or

(2) An association member or an employee of an association, corporation, or partnership, if the subject of the communication is any act or omission of such person in connection with the matter which may be binding upon or imputed to the organization for purposes of civil or criminal liability or whose statement may constitute an admission on the part of the organization.

 

Lawyers as Members. Lawyers who are members of the association may attend board meetings provided they are attending in their capacity as members, not lawyers.

ASSISTANCE: Associations needing legal assistance can contact us. To stay current with issues affecting community associations, subscribe to the Davis-Stirling Newsletter.

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