In Pennsylvania, homeowners associations are subject to certain laws and provisions, including the Pennsylvania Uniform Planned Community Act. It is imperative to know what these Pennsylvania HOA laws are to avoid legal problems in the future.
The Pennsylvania Uniform Planned Community Act regulates planned communities consisting of more than 12 units and formed after February 3, 1997, which is the effective date of the Act. Section 5102(a), however, outlines certain exceptions.
Moreover, sections 5102(b) and 5102(b.1)(1) retroactively apply to communities formed prior to the effective date. But, these sections only apply to situations and events taking place after the effective date. That means they don’t nullify existing provisions within an association’s governing documents.
This Act covers a variety of topics, including but not limited to surplus funds, voting, meetings, insurance, and lien for assessments. You can find the Pennsylvania Uniform Planned Community Act under Title 68, Subpart D of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes. It consists of four chapters, each one broken down further into sections.
The Pennsylvania Uniform Condominium Act governs the creation, management, and termination of condominium associations formed 120 days after July 2, 1980. But, some of the provisions set forth within the Act can still apply to condominiums formed prior to the effective date, provided the events take place after the effective date.
You can find the Pennsylvania Uniform Condominium Act under Title 68, Subpart B of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes. It contains four chapters, each one divided further into sections.
Pennsylvania Real Estate Cooperative Act
Title 68, Subpart C
The Pennsylvania Nonprofit Corporation Law of 1988 regulates the corporate procedure and structure of non-profit corporations. Homeowners associations and condominiums that form as non-profit corporations must adhere to this Act.
You can find the Pennsylvania Nonprofit Corporation Law under Title 15, Subpart C of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes. It contains the following chapters:
Members of an association have a right to request association records for inspection, including all financial records and executive meeting minutes. They may also request copies of such documents. This is in accordance with the provisions set forth within the Uniform Condominium Act, the Uniform Planned Community Act, and the Nonprofit Corporation Law of 1988.
The American, Commonwealth and Military Flag Act protects the right of homeowners to display the American flag, the Commonwealth flag, or the military flag in associations. According to Pennsylvania law, associations can’t forbid residents from displaying one of each flag on their own property.
The manner of display of the American flag must follow the provisions set forth within the U.S.C. Sections 4 through 10, though. The associations can also impose certain regulations concerning the Commonwealth and military flags such as their size, location, and flagpole use. But, associations may not ban the use of wall brackets. Additionally, flags may not be larger than 5 by 3 feet.
The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act is one of the most important HOA laws of Pennsylvania. It helps prevent discrimination in housing and public accommodation against persons based on race, color, ancestry, national origin, sex, age, religious creed, handicap or disability, or familial status. It also protects persons who use a support or guide animal due to deafness, blindness, or physical handicap as well as persons who train or handle guide or support animals.
This Act works similarly to the federal Fair Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Housing discrimination victims can lodge a formal complaint with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Pennsylvania Human Rights Commission. Victims can also file a private lawsuit in state or federal court.