While keeping the records of the association is not the most fascinating part of serving on a board, it is in some ways the most important. In fact, the flow of paperwork is the lifeblood of the community.
The Articles of Incorporation, proprietary lease and bylaws in a co-op and the condo association’s master deed, declaration and bylaws are the foundation of the business that is your typical co-op, condominium or homeowners’ association. The voluminous documents produced day to day are the records of its operation and the correspondence among the board, owners and management create the tenor of life within the community. Keeping documents and records tidy and communications responsible and transparent are key to running a functional and harmonious community.
Letters of the Law
The laws governing the documentation the co-op or condo must produce and distribute are few, surprisingly.
According to Wendell Smith, a senior partner at the Woodbridge-based law firm of Greenbaum Rowe Smith & Davis LLP, and co-author of the book, New Jersey Condominium and Community Association Law, these are spelled out in the New Jersey Condominium Act and the New Jersey Nonprofit Organization Act, which, for the most part, regulates cooperatives.
Section 46:8B-14 of the New Jersey Condominium Act states that an association is responsible for the “maintenance of accounting records in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, open to inspection at reasonable times by unit owner.”