Q&A: All in the Family?

Q I have a question about two family members being on the board of trustees. Is that OK or against some rule or law?

—Curious Stakeholder

A “There is no law which prohibits two family members from serving on the board of trustees of a community association,” says attorney Gregory Dyer of the law firm of McCarter & English.

“Assuming the two family members meet the qualifications for board membership set forth in the governing documents of the condominium association or cooperative corporation, they may serve together on the board. The community association’s governing documents, particularly the bylaws and certificate of incorporation, should be reviewed to determine the qualifications for directors. It is unlikely that these documents will contain any prohibition against two family members serving on the board.

“However, it is possible that family members will not qualify to be on the board for other reasons. For example, the bylaws may require that the person be an owner of a unit or, in the case of a cooperative, a shareholder of the cooperative corporation to be a director. Often, not all family members residing in the same unit are owners or shareholders of record. If the bylaws so provide, only those family members who are owners or shareholders would be able to serve on the board.”

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