Sometimes owners mix requests for information with requests for records. The Davis-Stirling Act provides for an owner's limited right to inspect books and records but does not create an obligation that associations compile information.
Creating Documents. For example, if an owner were to request a list of all parking violations for the past three years, the association is not required to comb through its files and create a list. If a list already exists, the association could produce it (minus any personal information that might be in the document), although it is not required to do so since the list is not part of the statutorily authorized "books and records" associations are required to produce. Many records are not subject to review.
Recommendation: Boards should talk to legal counsel when such requests are submitted to the association. Even if a document were to exist, legal counsel may advise against producing it if the person is in litigation with the association. If so, normal discovery procedures should be followed.
ASSISTANCE: Associations needing legal assistance can contact us. To stay current with issues affecting community associations, subscribe to the Davis-Stirling Newsletter.