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Don’t know if you are being bullied? Read this Nevada statute.

Many of the articles in my column have addressed a situations of harassment. In responding to these concerns, I usually cite Nevada Revised Statute 116.31184, which pertains to threats, harassment and other conduct. In addition, there have been management companies who have terminated their management contracts with their associations because of this issue of harassment and bullying.

So what constitutes bullying in the first place? NRS 388.122, which is a mainstream law that does not specifically address HOA issues, provides some detailed explanations:

Bullying means written, verbal or electronic expressions or physical acts or gestures, or any combination, that is directed at a person or group of people, or a single severe and willful act or expression that is directed at a person or group of people.

Let’s stop right here. Who are we speaking about? The list includes everyone: staff that manages your association, volunteer board members, vendors and you, as an owner.

The law continues with its definition of bullying that has the effect of physically harming a person or damaging the property of a person or who places a person in reasonable fear of physical harm or property damage.

As you can see, you don’t need to physically harm the person to be accused of bullying. A phone call to a community manager that becomes more aggressive by the homeowner who ends his or her call in a loud voice: “I’m coming down there.” What does that mean? Possible violence. Does the manager alert their supervisor and security? Often that is the case.

The law defines acts or conduct that are based upon the actual, or perceived, race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability of a person, sex or any other distinguishing characteristic or background of a person. Or association of a person having one or more of those actual or perceived characteristics.

As we have seen in the past, bullying often leads to discrimination of one of these protected classes. I have been aware of a few recent incidents in communities that fall in this category. If communities don’t handle things in the right way, they can be sued.

What I like about this law (NRS 388.122 (2) is the detailed definition of the term, bullying, as follows: A repeated or pervasive taunting, name-calling, belittling, mocking or use of put-downs or demeaning humor regarding the actual or perceived race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability of a person, sex or any other distinguishing characteristic or background of a person.

The next section of the law, I call the “rumor mill.” The law states that bullying is the behavior that is intended to harm a person by damaging or manipulating his or her relationships with others by conduct that includes, without limitation, spreading false rumors.

Section 2c of the law, defined bullying as where one’s conduct consist of repeated or pervasive nonverbal threats or intimidation, such as the use of aggressive, menacing or disrespectful gestures.

Many years ago, there was a formal complaint with the Nevada Real Estate Division of a director displaying his middle finger at an owner whenever that person was nearby.

This law ends with the following actions that constitute bullying:

Threats of harm to a person, to his or her possessions or other person, whether such threats are transmitted verbally, electronically or in writing.

Blackmail, extortion of demands for protection money or involuntary loans or donations. Blocking access to any property or facility or school. Stalking and, finally, physical harmful contact with or injury to another person or his or her property.

Why spend the time writing this article? Because

I am hearing and receiving more incidents from my readers of bullying complaints. We can’t blame the toxic environment that exists in the political world or the pandemic. There is no excuse! If such a situation exists within your community, maybe it’s time for a workshop or an educational seminar to discuss how we need to communicate with each other. There are seminars available by various attorneys.

Community managers and management companies may need to take the lead. If a manager sees a HOA meeting is deteriorating, he or she may need to step in and have the meeting recessed to allow for cooler heads to prevail, or even have the meeting adjourn.

The consequence can be costly, in so many ways. It’s time for us to conduct ourselves as professionals and set the example of proper protocol to our children.

Barbara Holland is an author and educator on real estate management. Questions may be sent to holland744o@gmail.com.

Homeowner wants rental cap for new community

Based on the six-month rental clause in your governing documents, there is no rental cap. You could have a significant number of renters. You would have to talk with the developer and see if they are willing to modify the CCRs to have a rental cap not to exceed 25 percent of the units.

Homeowner has long list of HOA complaints

As to the first item: Set an appointment with the management company and bring all of your documentation. It may take then a week or so for their accounting department to go through their records. Assuming that the same management company has been in place during the last six years, the accounting department should be able to view your information against the association records.

Large tree sheds leaves into neighbor’s yard, pool

If you have not contacted the owner of the house, please do so. If you don’t feel comfortable meeting face to face, then send the homeowner a letter. You may want to include some photographs. Ask the owner to please take care of overhangs, otherwise you will be forced to have your landscaper cut the limbs. By placing your neighbor on notice, allowing a reasonable amount of time for the neighbor to respond, you would be reducing any liability from the neighbor by trimming the tree.

Sorry, you just can’t quit your HOA

Sorry, an individual homeowner cannot opt out of their homeowner association. Under Nevada Revised Statutes 116.2118, an association can be terminated, which is a complex process that requires the support of the membership.

HOA won’t do anything about ‘Addams Family’ house

I live across the street from people who live in chaos. The police have been there at least 50 times in 10 years. The house hasn’t been painted since it was new 20 years ago, and it looks like the Addams Family lives there.

HOA cannot fine renter for license plate display

If the renter has a current license plate that is lying on the inside window dash, the vehicle would have been properly registered. The association could not fine the renter because the license plate is not on the vehicle.

Frequent condo false fire alarm sets off neighbors

If you can find the name of the alarm company for that house, you could contact them and ask for assistance. They most likely can disconnect the alarm.

HOA needs to find a way to maintain elevators in condo community

What happened to your reserves? Elevators would be covered under a reserve study, allowing the association to fund for their replacement and or repair. Your association should have been funding this expenditure since 1984.

Communities can get reputation for being difficult, unstable

If the general manager is an employee of the association, under NRS 116.31175 (4a), an owner is entitled to the number of hours worked, salaries and benefits. Those are the only records that the association is required to provide to a homeowner concerning the association’s employees.