Q: Can a pitbull be allowed as a support animal in a condominium or apartment complex?
A: The state of Nevada became the 14th state to ban dog breed discrimination. Gov. Brian Sandoval signed this legislation on May 24, 2013, which became effective on Oct. 1, 2013. The new law does allow local governments to pass laws that target dangerous or vicious dogs as long as the laws are free from breed bias. Note, the law does not specifically cover private organizations, such as homeowners associations.
Your question becomes more complicated as there could be a conflict between the Fair Housing laws and the section pertaining to disabilities and support animals with an association’s governing documents or an apartment lease agreement. If you can provide documentation from a doctor that the pit bull is a support animal, the association would have to allow for a variance. You would have to abide by all of the rules and regulations pertaining to dogs, as the association would have the right to take action against the homeowner if there were major infractions.
As an FYI, you, the pet owner, should absolutely obtain your own insurance coverage in case the pit bull should harm anyone.
Q: I live in a community with an HOA. We just got a letter about garage inspection. It said if we don’t open our door at the set time we will be sent notification from management and a violation process may be initiated.
A: Based upon your covenants, conditions and restrictions, it appears that the board is “stretching” the parking section, 10.19. In this association, the garage is to be primarily used for the storage of vehicles, with few exceptions. To enforce this covenant, the board’s approach appears to just do a blanket inspection of all garages, regardless of whether the homeowner is in violation or not in violation of their parking regulation. Nevada Revised Statutes 116.31031 (c) (2-3) requires the association to specify in detail the alleged violation and the proposed action to cure the alleged violation. In addition, the association is to provide a clear and detailed photograph of the alleged violation if it relates to the physical condition of the unit or the grounds of the unit.
Based upon this law, I don’t think the association can do a blanket inspection of the garages.
Barbara Holland is a certified property manager, broker and supervisory certified association manager. Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.