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Changes in law will affect how associations can tow vehicles

All things being considered, the 2019 legislative session passed the fewest association bills that I can remember over the last 20-some years. During this 2019 legislative session, there was a bill that would have eliminated the nonjudicial foreclosure. We are very lucky that because of the diligent work of so many rank-and-file individuals, managers, board members, as well as community association management companies and association lobbyists, we were able to dodge that bullet, which, if passed, would have been a most financially detrimental bill.

This year, it appeared that the Legislature was more interested in the apartments and single management homes with a number of proposed laws that would affect tenants’ rights, late fees, charges and the eviction process.

Senate Bill 212 was changed. It affects how associations can tow vehicles in the community. The existing law states that a vehicle may not be towed until 48 hours after affixing a notice to the vehicle that explains when it will be towed (with the exception of vehicles that are related to health, safety or welfare, i.e. parking in front of fire hydrants, etc.).

Nevada Revised Statute 706.4477 saw major changes in towing laws that allow the tow company to affix the notice as the authorized agent of the association as long as there is a signed specific request for the towing by the association or its authorized agent. (Subsection 1a). The new law allows a tow company to be an authorized agent of the association if the tow company has a contract with the association. (Subsection 2).

The new law allows a vehicle to be immediately towed when a notice was previously affixed to the vehicle for the same or similar reason within the community or three or more times during the immediately preceding six months within the same association for any reason, regardless of whether the vehicle was subsequently towed. (Subsection 2a (2)).

One other change can be found in Subsection 4 (II) under the health, safety or welfare, which now includes a vehicle that is parked in a space that is clearly marked for a specific resident or the use of a specific unit within the community.

This law become effective on July 1, 2019.

One caveat to associations: When the towing company becomes an authorized agent of the association, your association can be held liable for any illegal towing. Make sure that you have adequate protection and have your legal counsel review the towing contract.

I will be going into more detail in future articles pertaining to the new pet law, Assembly Bill 161, as well as Assembly Bill 335, which increased fees to resale packages, demand statements, etc., and Assembly Bill 393, the government shutdown law and foreclosure protection. And, finally Assembly Bill 421, which made some significant changes to the construction defect laws, favoring homeowners.

Barbara Holland is a certified property manager, broker and supervisory certified association manager. Questions may be sent to holland744o@gmail.com.

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