Q Do the individual condo association board members and/or the president of the board of trustees have any legal rights in removing one of the directors? Do we as a condominium association have the legal right to remove a treasurer from their duties without due cause and deny them a chance to respond? We have suspicions that they have a conflict of interest in their dealings with the association’s finances.
—Cooking the Books
A “The issue of whether a Board of Trustees/Directors has the right to remove an officer is often document driven,” says attorney Charles A. Perkins, a senior partner with the law firm of Perkins & Antcil, P.C., based in Westford, Massachusetts.
“Most Massachusetts condominium association documents which deal with this issue indicate that the board itself may remove any officer with or without cause. Consequently, many boards choose the path of least resistance to remove members without cause, thereby avoiding a divisive debate over whether sufficient cause exists to remove a board member and thereafter a hearing regarding the same.
“If the removal is to be for cause, the better approach is to provide the officer to be removed with notice and a chance to defend him/herself regarding the same.
“These are the types of meetings which will often occur in executive session.
“As to the removal of a trustee(s), again, most documents provide that the unit owners may remove with or without cause, after notice and an opportunity to be heard. If the documents do not provide for notice and an opportunity to be heard, many attorneys still suggest that this be provided.”