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Q&A: Saying NO to Pets

My condominium does not allow any animals, as spelled out in the condominium rules and regulations. This was one of the reasons I purchased in this particular building. With no regard to the rules, several owners have recently snuck in cats for pets. Our property is smaller, with only 39 units and only one elevator. When the building was new, the builder allowed the first owners to bring in their small pets, with the understanding that when the animal died, there would be no replacing them. Subsequent buyers were never allowed to have animals.

What can we do to solve this problem? How do we do it in a "nice way" so as to stay friendly in our building? I would not be opposed to hiring a lawyer, even at my own expense, to rid us of this problem.

—No Pets Wanted in Plainfield

“The board of directors may want to consider grandfathering the existing animals until they pass away, or give some timeframe when for when those animals need to be removed from the unit,” according to Kerry T. Bartell, an attorney and a principal with the law firm of Kovitz Shifrin Nesbit in Buffalo Grove. “However, it is hard for me to know their options without reviewing the declaration and specific provision laid out in the condo documents.”    

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