PARTNER GREGORY J. FIORITTO AND ATTORNEYS MELISSA D. FRANCIS AND MARK B. DAVIS TO SPEAK AT UNITED CONDOMINIUM OWNERS OF MICHIGAN (UCOM) SEMINAR ON AUGUST 15, 2017: RENTALS, MARIJUANA AND BANKRUPTCY ISSUES

We are most pleased to announce that experienced ZDF attorneys Greg Fioritto, Mark Davis and Melissa Francis will present at an upcoming UCOM Seminar, which will take place on August 15, 2017 at the Costick Center in Farmington Hills.

The topics to be covered at the Seminar are as follows:

Continue reading

Posted in Firm News, seminars, UCOM | Leave a comment

FIRM NEWS: ZELMANSKI, DANNER & FIORITTO, PLLC WELCOMES ATTORNEY STACIA A. MILLER TO THE ZDF TEAM!

We are pleased to announce that Attorney Stacia A. Miller has joined the firm as an associate.

Although Ms. Miller is a “newly-minted “attorney (having passed the bar exam in 2017), she brings a tremendous amount of experience working with community associations to the Firm. Before getting involved in the legal field, Ms. Miller spent several years working for local property management companies. Later, she worked as a paralegal for a Michigan firm that specialized in community association law.

Ms. Miller graduated from Wayne State University Law School in 2015, and joined Zelmanski, Danner & Fioritto, PLLC, as a law clerk in 2016. Continue reading

Posted in Firm News | Leave a comment

FIRM NEWS: ZELMANSKI, DANNER & FIORITTO, PLLC WELCOMES ATTORNEY JOHN D. GWYN TO THE ZDF TEAM!

Attorney John Gwyn

We are pleased to announce that Attorney John D. Gwyn has joined the firm as an associate.

Mr. Gwyn is an experienced attorney and seasoned litigator who has been practicing law for nearly 27 years. His areas of practice prior to joining the ZDF team include not only community association law, but also various aspects of commercial and residential real estate transactions, enforcement of creditors’ rights, and bankruptcy matters.

The addition of Mr. Gwyn to the firm continues ZDF’s practice of retaining thoroughly experienced lawyers who are fully capable of addressing the myriad of complex legal issues that community associations face.

Posted in Firm News | Leave a comment

PARTNER GREG J. FIORITTO AND ASSOCIATE ATTORNEY LEE S. SCHOFIELD TO SPEAK AT UPCOMING COMMUNITY ASSOCIATIONS INSTITUTE (CAI) SEMINAR ON MARCH 10, 2017: LEGAL Q & A PANEL AND THE PROCESS AND REMEDIES FOR CORRECTING BYLAW VIOLATIONS


We are most pleased to announce that experienced ZDF attorneys Greg J. Fioritto and Lee S. Schofield have been asked to speak at the 2017 Michigan CAI Conference and Expo.Greg is one of the partners of the firm and has been practicing community association law since 2003.  He has extensive experience with association matters, including collections matters, developer issues, and document amendments.

Lee is a veteran community association attorney who practiced commercial law before joining ZDF in 2005.  He has particular expertise in collections matters, civil litigation, bylaws enforcement, and association loans.

This year’s seminar will be held on Friday, March 10, 2017 at the Suburban Collection Showplace, 46100 Grand River, Novi, MI 48374. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Should your Condominium Association be VA Certified?

VA CertificationBy: Tracy N. Danner-Bond

One out of every 11 citizens in Michigan is a veteran and may receive benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) VA Certification.  The VA may help service-members, veterans, and certain qualified surviving spouses of service-members and veterans become homeowners through a home loan guarantee benefit whereby the VA guarantees a portion of the loan.  While this benefit is virtually automatic for anyone who has served in the military (including reservists and Guard members), loan approval still requires the buyer to be approved under lender criteria.  Generally speaking, this means that the buyer must have the same minimum credit score as a buyer under an FHA loan program.

The goal of the VA loan program is to help protect the interests of veterans and the Government by ensuring that all properties located in a common interest community (such as a condominium project) meet VA regulatory requirements.  Meeting this goal as efficiently and cost effectively as possible serves the best interests of all program participants involved.  To that end, the VA has promulgated regulations and requirements for certification of condominium communities. Continue reading

Posted in FHA Certification, Mortgage Lending, VA Certification | Leave a comment

NEW FHA CERTIFICATION GUIDELINES TO LAND SOON, ENDING A 5-YEAR HOLDING PATTERN

New FHA Certifications

new fha certificationBy: Tracy N. Danner-Bond, Esq.

On June 30, 2011, the Condominium Project Approval and Processing Guide (“Guide”) was published by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”).  The Guide was designed to provide Federal Housing Administration (“FHA) condominium project approval processing requirements.  Since June 30, 2011, a handful of Mortgagee Letters from HUD have provided small changes to the Guide, but for the most part, the processing requirements contained in the Guide have been in a “holding pattern” for the last 5 years.

On September 13, 2012, Mortgagee Letter 2012-18 was published, making several changes to the Guide.  Most significant of those changes affecting condominium project eligibility are the following: Continue reading

Posted in FHA Certification, Mortgages | Leave a comment

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: JUST KEEP SWIMMING: NAVIGATING THE WATERS OF A CO-OWNER’S CHAPTER 7 BANKRUPTCY FILING

just-keep-swimming

Chapter 7 BankruptcyBy: Melissa D. Francis, Esq.

Bankruptcy matters (chapter 7 bankruptcy) can be treacherous waters for Condominium Association Boards to navigate. Such issues should, in most cases, be referred directly to the Association’s legal counsel, who should be experienced in handling Condominium collection cases in the bankruptcy context. Nevertheless, Board members (and property managers) should at least be familiar with the basic aspects of Bankruptcy law that apply to Condominiums. This blog post will address some of the fundamentals of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy cases in relation to Condominiums.

A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy cases is often referred to as a “liquidation bankruptcy.” In this type of Bankruptcy, a Trustee is appointed to review the Chapter 7 filing and examine the Co-owners’ assets to determine if any items can be sold to generate funds for the estate allowing Creditors to receive payments. In a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy case, the Co-owner has two choices as to the treatment of the Condominium Unit: retain the property, or surrender the property. Continue reading

Posted in Assessments, Bankruptcy, Collections | Leave a comment

Of Condominium Associations and Pocket Monsters (Pokemon)

pokemon

pokemon go condominiumsOf Condominium Associations and Pocket Monsters (Pokemon)

By: Paul C. Schultz, Esq.

During Summer 2016, the Pokémon GO game for smartphones took the world by storm – leveraging novelty and nostalgia to get millions of Americans up off the couch and out of doors in ways that create important legal issues for condominium associations and other owners of real property.

In principle, augmented-reality location-based smartphone games have been available for almost all Americans since Google’s Niantic Labs released its title Ingress in 2014.  Augmented reality (AR) is a live view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sounds, graphics, or GPS data.  Though we may have ignored augmented reality in 2014, it is now less possible to ignore AR because Pokémon GO has been released to the delight of millions of users of all ages.  These users have already spent hundreds of millions of hours playing the game: collecting the titular Poct monsters by wandering the streets of our cities, towns, and condominium developments. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

PARTNER TRACY DANNER-BOND AND ATTORNEY MELISSA FRANCIS TO SPEAK AT UNITED CONDOMINIUM OWNERS OF MICHIGAN (UCOM) SEMINAR ON OCTOBER 15, 2016: PANEL DISCUSSION – QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS WITH LEGAL COUNSEL

melissa-tracyWe are most pleased to announce that experienced ZDF attorneys Tracy Danner-Bond and Melissa Francis have been asked to speak at this year’s annual UCOM Seminar, entitled “Positive Progress in Community Living.”

Tracy is one of the partners of the firm and has been practicing community association law since 2004. She has extensive experience with association matters, including collections, FHA certification, and document amendments.

Melissa is a veteran attorney who practiced bankruptcy law for many years before joining ZDF in 2013. Her experience and skill-set is unmatched when it comes to assisting associations with bankruptcy-related matters.

The seminar will be held on Saturday, October 15, 2016 at the Management Education Center, 811 W. Square Lake Road, Troy, MI 48098.

The Panel discussion with legal counsel will take place from
1:25 p.m. to 2:25 p.m. in the Auditorium.

The Seminar starts at 8:00 a.m. and goes until 3:00 p.m.

The cost of registration is $125.00 for Members of UCOM and $175.00 for Non-Members.

To register, visit the UCOM website at http://www.ucomonline.org.

Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

PARTNER EDWARD ZELMANSKI TO SPEAK AT COMMUNITY ASSOCIATIONS INSTITUTE (CAI) SEMINAR: HOW TO IDENTIFY RED FLAGS IN YOUR GOVERNING DOCUMENTS

alex-250As many board members learn all too late, just because something is in your association’s governing documents does not mean it is desirable, legal or enforceable.

On September 28, 2016, Partner Edward Zelmanski will present
“How to Identify Red Flags in your Governing Documents and What to Update.”

This Seminar will be hosted by the Michigan Chapter of the Community Associations Institute at Farmington Hills Manor.  Please see the flyer below for more details and registration information. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment