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Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act

Length: 3 hours

On April 4, 1997, Vermont Governor Howard Dean signed into law Act 104, the Vermont Common Interest Ownership Act (“VCIOA”) to supersede Chapter 15 of Title 27 of the Vermont statutes, the old Vermont Condominium Act (the “old Act”), that had been in effect since 1967.  VCIOA was, in turn, based on the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act (“UCIOA”) that had been developed by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (the “ULC”).  VCIOA became effective on January 1, 1999, and all common interest communities formed on or after January 1, 1999 must be formed in accordance with and comply with the provisions of VCIOA.  Common interest communities formed prior to January 1, 1999 continue to be governed, for the most part, by the Act. A number of states have adopted UCIOA in one form or another and, over the years, experience with the application of issues convinced the ULC that adjustments were necessary to rebalance the relationship between the developer/declarants, the owners‟ associations and the unit owners.   At its Annual Conference in July of 2008 the ULC took up the cause of beleaguered common interest community unit owners.  In its Prefatory Note to the 2008 Amendments to the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act, the ULC reported that: In 2008, the Uniform Law Commission (the “ULC”) approved amendments to the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act (“UCIOA”) after a four-year Drafting Committee effort. Colloquially, this has become known as “UCIOA 3.0.”

UCIOA 3.0 primarily addresses a range of significant controversies between unit owner associations and individual members of those associations that have arisen in the years since the ULC last considered amendments to UCIOA in 1994. To a lesser degree, these amendments also address a range of other matters affecting common interest communities – that is, condominiums, cooperatives, and planned communities – that practitioners have identified throughout the country over the last decade.

Despite the many years of drafting efforts beginning in 1976 with The Uniform

Condominium Act and culminating in the 1994 amendments to UCIOA, it had become

increasingly clear by the time the Drafting Committee was created in 2005 that major tensions remained in the Common Interest Community field that neither UCIOA nor any

of its constituent Acts – nor most State statutes in this field – adequately addressed.

Those tensions principally involved the perception that individual unit owners were often unduly disadvantaged in their dealings with the elected directors and employee/managers of unit owner associations. Even in those few states that had adopted UCIOA more or less intact, and therefore were able to apply the detailed provisions of that Act to association activities, there has been a growing focus, both in the media and in professional conferences, on the intensity of owner/association disputes.  State legislators were besieged with lobbying efforts to adopt narrowly focused special interest statutes intended to fix one or another association „problem‟. Even the federal government became involved, enacting a federal statute to insure that associations of every form of common interest community must permit the display of the American flag on units, and another one that enabled individual unit owners to purchase individual cable television systems, notwithstanding widespread prohibitions on such purchases by unit owner associations. Accordingly, the revised act – so-called "Version 3.0"[UCIOA 3.0] – has systematically identified those areas where there have been allegations that those who control the decision-making apparatus of associations have either abused the rights of individual unit owners, or suffer from such inadequate legislation that they are unable to adequately assist their owners.”



Speaker Information:

            Harland L. Miller, III, Esq.

            Carl H. Lisman, Esq.

            Jon S. Readnour, Esq.

            A Jay Kenlan, Esq.

            Eugene J. Ward, III, Esq.


CLE Credits (60): 3.0 Total hours

Produced By:

Vermont Bar Association

Course Materials

  • Uniform Commercial Interest Ownership Act