Developer Warranty Legislation Considered in Maryland

by Tom Schild

Maryland legislative committees are reviewing proposed legislation to ban condominium developers from limiting condo warranties in sales contracts and condominium bylaws.

In response to the broad warranty rights granted by Maryland law, developers have restricted these rights by provisions in sales contracts which shorten the time for filing court claims against developer.  Parties to a contract can agree to shorten the time to bring legal claims unless prohibited by statute from doing so.

A proposed bill (House Bill 740/Senate Bill 725) would prohibit provisions in sales contracts or other documents which shorten the statute of limitations applicable to warranty claims or other statutory or common law claims in connection with the sale of condominiums. 

The bill would also prohibit developer-imposed provisions in a condominium declaration or bylaw, or other documents which require unit owner approval for a condominium to pursue legal claims by litigation, arbitration, or other means.  Developers have utilized such restrictive approval provisions in recent years to deter warranty claims and other legal action against developers in connection with the development and construction of residential condominiums.

This entry was posted in Condominiums, Maryland Legislation and tagged , , , , by Tom Schild. Bookmark the permalink.

About Tom Schild is written by Thomas C. Schild. Tom focuses his practice in the representation of community associations. Since 1985, he has represented condominiums, homeowners associations, and housing cooperatives throughout Maryland and Washington D.C. He is recognized locally and nationwide as a leader in the field of community association law. Tom has written numerous articles and presented many seminars concerning various aspects of condominium and homeowners associations operations. He has recently presented programs regarding community associations insurance, contracts, leasing restrictions, tips for avoiding litigation, and community governance. He is a long-time member and past Chair of the Maryland Legislative Action Committee of the Community Associations Institute (CAI), which represents community association interests before the Maryland General Assembly. Tom is also a member of CAI's National Faculty and teaches a Community Governance course for community association managers in cities nationwide. And, he is a member of the College of Community Association Lawyers (CCAL) which is comprised of fewer than 150 lawyers nationwide recognized for their leadership and contributions in the field of community law. He previously served on the Board of Directors of CAI's Washington Metropolitan Chapter. Tom is a 1976 graduate of Northwestern University and a 1980 graduate of the George Washington University Law School. He is admitted to practice before the state and federal courts in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

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