Residential Law


03 de December de 2021

Everyone living within a building and occupying an apartment (even on a short-term basis) is considered defined as a resident – whether it be the actual homeowner, child, spouse, or tenant.  Even a building employee who happens to live on the premises, is regarded as a resident.

From the other side, however, not every resident is necessarily a homeowner with ownership rights or actual legal rights within the building at all.

The residents’ association can be either a physical individual or legal representative, resident or non-resident of the building – nominated to represent the building either actively or indirectly, taking on various roles and responsibilities.  This can include maintenance of the building’s common areas, taking care of bills and expenses and when necessary, to charge residents any required taxes or fines.

Currently it is common for there to be a proper election of building representatives, by everyone from new residents to longer-established older residents – with everyone granted equal standing, as per the Civil Code (art. 1.347).  The sub-association has all the powers of the regular association but must only take on duties in the case of absence (either temporary or permanently) of the leaseholder.  Yet, it is rather common that they partake in management duties together with the main association.

However, there are some acts that remain solely within the responsibility of the association – such as bank signatures, renewal of digital certificates, labor / work tribunals, or anything that could jeopardize the building and its residents.  It is interesting that there is no provision in the law for the sub-association, as the function only exists in the case of convention.  The Fiscal Council is a selected entity, composed of three members elected in the assembly, for a maximum period of two years at which time they must relinquish leadership of the association.

If there is a provision in the convention, then the election of council is obligatory – otherwise, the building wouldn’t even need a council.

Generally composed of three active members and three surrogates, the fiscal council has responsibility of examining union / association accounts and issue an opinion to the assembly (either favorable or not) about the approval of accounts, however it is not the council that gives approval – but to only give a perspective (again, either favorable or not).  It is ultimately the assembly which decides.

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