—--Concerned About Liability
“What is an association to do?” asks Attorney Stuart Lieberman of the Princeton-based law firm of Lieberman and Blecher. “Presumably the property in question is condominium association property. This means that it is a common element and that it is owned by every member of the association in an undivided manner.
“A condominium association has a duty to ensure that its property is used in a safe fashion and that persons are not subject to an unreasonable level of risk by using the property. This obligation to insure that property is used safely in most jurisdictions applies not just to members of the Association but also to persons invited association members.
“If using this property for the purpose of hosting a private party will unreasonably subject the guests to harm because of oncoming traffic, and if such harm is reasonably foreseeable, then the association might very well be liable in court if an accident does occur and in particular if someone does become hurt.
“While it is correct that the association presumably has insurance for the common elements, an obvious misuse of the common elements may force the association into a fight with the insurance carrier in the unfortunate event that someone is injured and a claim is filed. Moreover, while it is very unlikely even the officers of the association and its employees could be held liable if the decision to allow the party was thoughtless and woefully imprudent.
“The questioner states that he or she does not want to be “unreasonable” but is concerned about the likelihood of injury from this proposed use. That concern is far from unreasonable. We are in a very litigious world in which lawsuits have become the rule rather than the exception.”