In a recent article, the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin cites data from a handbook published by Adrienne M. Levatino, condo and common-interest community ombudsperson for the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation (IDFPR) estimating that as of 2015, about 30% of the state’s population—around 3.7 million people—reside in a condo development.
Levatino describes condo associations as “a sort of highly-local mini-government” with their own declaration, bylaws, and internal rules set under the framework of the Illinois Condominium Property Act, and outlines special considerations that condo communities should address in the age of COVID-19. The Daily Law Bulletin provides several after speaking with attorneys and regulators in the industry.
1. With gatherings restricted to 10 people or fewer, condominium boards can make use of “acceptable technological means” of participating and acting in meetings that are provided by law in the Condominium Property Act.
In Illinois, these meetings must be “open to any unit owner,” with a specific list of exceptions based on the subject matter to be discussed, notes the Bulletin.
Conference calls or video conferencing tools are a socially distant way for boards to comply, indicates Patrick T. Costello, a shareholder at Keay & Costello P.C. in Wheaton, who co-chaired the Community Association Institute (CAI)’s Illinois legislation committee in 2014 when the organization helped draft the electronic voting bill allowing condo boards to function remotely. According to Costello, “I think the concept under both the Condominium Property Act and under the Palm II case is that unit owners must be able to attend and watch the board conduct its business."