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Condominium Boards May Sue to Foreclose Common Charges Liens

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has given rise to a series of executive orders, local laws, and court rules that temporarily limit various types of residential landlord-tenant proceedings and mortgage foreclosure actions. In Board of Managers of 243 West 98 Condominium v. Goldberg, Index No. 155924/2020 (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Co. Nov. 17, 2020), a Condominium Board of Managers filed a common charges lien against a residential unit owner who had not paid her common charges for several months. The Board then brought an action to foreclose on the common charges lien. The unit owner moved to dismiss the action as barred by the Governor’s Executive Orders. The Board responded that the action was not covered by the Executive Orders as it did not seek to evict a tenant or to foreclose on a mortgage, and that in any event, the court papers filed by the Board complied with the notice requirements under the Executive Orders. The court agreed with the Board and ruled that “defendant has failed to show that this action to foreclose on a lien for common charges was filed in violation of Governor Cuomo’s Executive Orders….” Ganfer Shore Leeds & Zauderer LLP represents the Condominium Board of Managers in this case.