Cranbrook Lecture Series

The excitement is building here as Partner Gregory J. Fioritto co-presents the third lecture “The Frank Lloyd Wright Smith House and Segregation in Metropolitan Detroit” on Sunday, April 25, 2021 at 3:00 p.m. EST as part of Cranbrook’s Bauder Lecture Series “Unsettling Landscapes at Cranbrook”!  The Bauder Lecture Series starts this Sunday, April 11th and continues weekly through Sunday, April 25th.

The 2021 installment of the annual Bauder Lecture Series, Unsettling Landscapes at Cranbrook, brings six historians and experts to the Center’s virtual auditorium where they will help us explore, expand, and enrich our understanding of the histories with Cranbrook’s original 1904 Booth Estate, the 1915 Japanese Garden, and 1950 Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Smith House.

Thomas Sugrue will examine how federal, state, and local governments systematically imposed residential segregation in Detroit—and across the nation. As part of this presentation, he will assess the role that home and property owners’ associations played in enforcing restrictive covenants and promoting segregation throughout Detroit and its suburbs.

Gregory Fioritto will answer the question: What can the members and boards of homeowners’ associations do to change existing deeds—including that of the Smith House—to ensure they are never again used as tools to promote exclusionary practices? He will provide an overview of both the current Michigan laws governing community associations as well as a bill introduced in the Michigan House of Representatives—the Prohibited Restrictive Covenant Act—that addresses racist restrictions and offers permanent solutions.

You can use the link below for more information and to register for this series.

“UNSETTLING LANDSCAPES AT CRANBROOK” BAUDER LECTURE SERIES

This lecture series is free and open to the public.  Advance Registration is required. You do not need to register for each lecture separately; your registration will provide access and Zoom links to all three virtual lectures.

  • Gregory J. Fioritto is a partner with the law firm of Zelmanski, Danner & Fioritto, PLLC. A 2000 graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, he has spent nearly his entire legal career practicing in the field of community association law. He has lectured on the subject for various organizations, including the Community Associations Institute (CAI) and the United Condominium Owners of Michigan (UCOM), and is a Co-Chairperson of CAI’s Legislative Action Committee for Michigan. He also serves as President of his own condominium association’s Board of Directors in Canton, Michigan.

Gregory Fioritto

 

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March 2021 B.E.A.T.

B.E.A.T.
Board Education and Training

Wednesday, March 24, 2021 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Attorneys Richard L. Wagner, Jr and Brooke M. Jordan present:

“Taxes, Taxes, Taxes: Property and Income Tax Issues Impacting Community Associations”

Join attorneys Richard L. Wagner, Jr and Brooke M. Jordan in a discussion regarding the timeliness of an appeal and other tax impacts on community associations.

For the zoom meeting details, call us at 734-459-0062. This Zoom presentation will be fed through our Facebook Event page.

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February 2021 B.E.A.T.

B.E.A.T.
Board Education and Training

Wednesday, February 24, 2021 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Attorney Edward Zelmanski presents:

“Housing, an Essential Civil Right”

Join attorney Edward Zelmanski in an exploration of the foundation and development of basic civil rights in housing law. We will trace these from the beginnings in the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights to the Constitution through the creation of the United States Federal Housing Administration and through recent legislation and legal developments concerning civil rights in housing. We will discuss the impact of these principles on community association living.

For the zoom meeting details, call us at 734-459-0062. This Zoom presentation will be fed through our Facebook Event page.

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January 2021 B.E.A.T.

B.E.A.T.
Board Education and Training

Wednesday, January 20, 2021 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Attorney Gregory J. Fioritto presents:

“Guiding Your Association through the Pandemic Endgame”

As we move into a new year, it is imperative that community association boards have the most up-to-date guidance available on handling COVID-19-related legal matters. Gregory J. Fioritto, a partner with the firm, will host this interactive webinar examining the current status of the pandemic as it continues to impact associations. Learn how the introduction of a vaccine in 2021, the incoming presidential administration and other massive changes in our world may radically change the legal landscape once again for association boards. Recently enacted laws that provide associations with potential immunity for COVID-related legal claims will be discussed in depth. Other key topics, such as the re-opening of community facilities upon the introduction of a vaccine and the handling of association meetings, will also be addressed.

If you serve on a community association board or manage community associations, you cannot afford to miss this vital update on how to handle the biggest COVID-19 legal issues and hot topics that associations are sure to face in 2021 and beyond.

For the zoom meeting details, call us at 734-459-0062. This Zoom presentation will be fed through our Facebook Event page.

 

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December 2020 B.E.A.T.

B.E.A.T.

Board Education and Training

Wednesday, December 2, 2020 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Attorney Mark Davis presents:

The Hit List: Updates and Trends in Marijuana Law

This interactive livestream Webinar, presented by Mark Davis of Zelmanski, Danner & Fioritto, PLLC we will delve into recent updates regarding State and Federal marijuana laws, their enforcement, recent case law development, and enforcement options for community associations.

This meeting is interactive and your questions will be answered by a panel in real-time. If you have any questions, you may raise your hand or send a private chat message in the Zoom meeting.

To rsvp and obtain the zoom meeting details, call us at 734-459-0062 x224.

 

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November 2020 B.E.A.T.

Brown Bag B.E.A.T. Bites

Wednesday, November 18, 2020 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Lee S. Schofield and Stacia A. Miller present:

Interviewing and Choosing your New Property Manager

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook 

Have you ever wondered what the best process is for choosing a new property manager? Whether you are self-managed or interested in a change, this session will explore how to find candidates that will be a good fit for your community, how to schedule and conduct interviews, and what to look for in a management contract.

Have all your organization’s questions answered live by one of our experienced attorneys during this interactive webinar.

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Michigan Provides Community Associations with Immunity from COVID-19 Lawsuits

By: Brooke M. Jordan, Esq.

On October 22, 2020, Governor Whitmer signed into law House Bill 6030, a.k.a. COVID 19- Response and Reopening Liability Assurance Act (Act).( http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2019-2020/publicact/pdf/2020-PA-0236.pdf)

This Act provides condominium and homeowners associations with an affirmative defense to civil actions asserted by a co-owner, tenant or invitee arising out of COVID 19 beginning March 1, 2020. These civil actions alleging tort claims resulting from COVID-19 include negligence, gross negligence, or intentional infliction of emotional distress.

To enjoy this benefit of immunity, the association must show that it complied with COVID-19 related laws, rules, regulations, and orders that “had not been denied legal effect at the time of the conduct or risk that allegedly caused harm.” Even though the Michigan Supreme Court concluded on October 2, 2020 that the Governor was not authorized to issue executive orders addressing COVID-19 after April 30, 2020 and such orders were denied legal effect, an Association must still show that it complied with those Orders prior to the Supreme Court’s ruling.

An association’s compliance with COVID-19 related laws, rules, regulations, and orders need not, however, rise to the level of strict compliance.  The Act provides that “isolated, de minimis deviation” by the Association from the laws, rules, regulations, and orders will not render it defenseless from COVID-19. For guidance, an Association should look to Federal, State, and local laws and regulations to carry out its important functions and activities.

For instance, Michigan law imposes a duty on the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) to “prevent disease, prolong life, and promote public health,” and gives MDHHS the power to “[e]xercise authority and promulgate rules to safeguard properly the public health; to prevent the spread of diseases and the existence of sources of contamination; and to implement and carry out the powers and duties vested by law in the department.”

MDHHS has found that to effectively carry out its duty to protect the public’s health, it must impose rules on public gatherings.  These rules became effective on October 9, 2020. To ensure your Association is afforded the full protection provided by this recently enacted law, it should comply with these rules when holding meetings and maintaining or opening fitness facilities and pools. See https://www.michigan.gov/documents/coronavirus/MDHHS_epidemic_order_-_Gatherings_masks_bars_sports_-_FINAL_signed_704740_7.pdf

In conclusion, this immunity from COVID-19 related tort claims is not absolute and will not apply if the association fails to follow the laws, rules, and regulations issued by Federal authorities, MDHHS, and local governments.

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this recently enacted law and its implications on your community, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Brooke M. Jordan joined Zelmanski, Danner & Fioritto, PLLC as an associate attorney in 2020. She graduated from Michigan State University with High Honors in 1997, where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Social Relations from James Madison College. She earned her Juris Doctorate from Wayne State University Law School in 2001.

Ms. Jordan has been an Assistant Attorney General for the states of Arizona and Michigan. In Arizona, she sought to advance the best interests of children. In Michigan, she represented the State in cases involving securities fraud, antitrust, and consumer protection.

Most recently, Ms. Jordan was a Lead Attorney for the Detroit Land Bank Authority, where she was responsible for implementing and managing the Nuisance Abatement Program in the City of Detroit Council Districts 1, 2, and 4. She strategically and effectively aligned with internal and external partners throughout the City of Detroit (including, but not limited to, the City of Detroit Department of Neighborhoods, Detroit Police Department, City of Detroit Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department, Community Associations, Block Clubs, and residents). Collectively, they passionately sought to eradicate blight, stabilize and rebuild the most densely populated neighborhoods in Detroit. Ms. Jordan sincerely cares about the quality of life of people and proactively seeks ways to assist in a Community’s ability to thrive.

Ms. Jordan has numerous interests outside of legal practice. She very much enjoys spending time with her children. She also enjoys outdoor activities including kayaking, hiking and running.

 

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September 2020 B.E.A.T.

B.E.A.T.

Board Education and Training

Wednesday, September 23, 2020 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Zelmanski, Danner & Fioritto, PLLC and Sterling Insurance Group present:

Handling Community Association Insurance Issues in the COVID-19 Era:
From the Basics to Pandemic Planning

This interactive livestream Webinar, co-presented by Gregory J. Fioritto of Zelmanski, Danner & Fioritto, PLLC, and Josh Martin and Scott McInerney of Sterling Insurance Group, will cover a multitude of topics involving

community associations and insurance.

The basic types of insurance coverages that every association should have will be discussed, as well as some of the more specialized types of coverage (such as workers’ compensation and crime coverage). The usefulness for associations of a well-drafted Disaster Recovery Plan will be explored.

We will also discuss some of the limitations of association coverage when it comes to COVID-19 claims, and how an association might properly handle “Pandemic Planning” for the future.


Brown Bag B.E.A.T. Bites

Wednesday, October 14, 2020 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Tracy N. Danner-Bond presents:

Amending Your Condominium Documents:
Preparing for Success 
During the COVID-19 Pandemic

This session will explore the fundamentals of amending Condominium Master Deeds and Bylaws, with a focus on the most effective practices for completing a project. Specific tips for conducting a successful project through to its conclusion will be offered, including an examination of the best ways to explain proposed changes to both Board Members and Co-owners. We will discuss tactics, such as Co-owner surveys and informational meetings that are most likely to lead to a successful document amendment project outcome and a satisfied membership.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Lee Schofield and Stacia A. Miller presents
“Interviewing and Choosing your New Property Manager”

Have you ever wondered what the best process is for choosing a new property manager? Whether you are self-managed or interested in a change, this session will explore how to find candidates that will be a good fit for your community, how to schedule and conduct interviews, and what to look for in a management contract.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Mark B. Davis presents
“The Hit List: Updates and Trends in Marijuana Law”

We will delve into recent updates regarding State and Federal marijuana laws, governmental enforcement, recent case law development, and enforcement options for community associations.

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FIRM NEWS: ZELMANSKI, DANNER & FIORITTO, PLLC WELCOMES ATTORNEY BROOKE M. JORDAN TO THE ZDF TEAM!

We are pleased to announce that Brooke M. Jordan has joined the firm as an associate attorney.

Ms. Jordan has been an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Michigan. She represented the State in cases involving securities fraud, antitrust, and consumer protection.

Most recently, Ms. Jordan was a Lead Attorney for the Detroit Land Bank Authority, where she was responsible for implementing and managing the Nuisance Abatement Program in the City of Detroit Council Districts 1, 2, and 4. She strategically and effectively aligned with internal and external partners throughout the City of Detroit (including, but not limited to, the City of Detroit Department of Neighborhoods, Detroit Police Department, City of Detroit Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department, Community Associations, Block Clubs, and residents). Collectively, they passionately sought to eradicate blight, stabilize and rebuild the most densely populated neighborhoods in Detroit.

Ms. Jordan graduated from Michigan State University with High Honors in 1997, where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Social Relations from James Madison College. She earned her Juris Doctorate from Wayne State University Law School in 2001.

We congratulate Ms. Jordan as she moves on to the next step in her progression in the field of community association law!

 

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August 2020 B.E.A.T.

 

B.E.A.T.
Board Education and Training

August 12, 2020 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Edward J. Zelmanski and Richard L. Wagner present:

Managing the Unexpected: How to Handle Fire, Water and Mold Losses

Boards do their best to manage maintenance, budget, insurance, and other administrative needs of their communities. Then, losses caused by fire, water, mold, and other unexpected occurrences can threaten to unhinge the best laid plans. This will help community board members understand and manage the process of casualty remediation and restoration. The discussion will emphasize timeliness, efficiency, and thoroughness in responding to casualties so that you can help get your community back on an even keel.

Brown Bag B.E.A.T. Bites

Wednesday, August 26, 2020 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Live on Facebook and Zoom with replays on YouTube and Facebook

Edward J. Zelmanski, Tracy N. Danner-Bond, and Melissa D. Francis present:

How to Conduct Your Annual Meeting Remotely
During the COVID-19 Pandemic
an Association Guide to the “new normal

Join our team for a lunch time discussion on various methods for conducting your annual meetings virtually, including reference materials on the various services and platforms to assist with holding the meetings, voting, and maintaining discussions while adhering to expected social distancing guidelines.

 

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