Governing Documents

An association’s “governing documents” are defined as “the declaration and any other documents, such as bylaws, operating rules, articles of incorporation, or articles of association, which govern the operation of the common interest development or association.” (Civ. Code § 4150.)

In addition to state, local and federal laws, a common interest development (“CID”) is governed by its governing documents. The governing documents may have been initially drafted by the CID’s developer, but are subject to amendment by the association and its membership over time. (See “Amendments to Declaration,” “Amendments to Bylaws,” and “Adopting & Amending Operating Rules.”)

The types of governing documents for any particular CID or association will vary slightly based upon the nature of the CID itself:

Governing Document PUDs Condo Projects Stock Cooperatives
Declaration (CC&Rs)
Articles of Incorporation
Operating Rules
Election Rules
Architectural Guidelines
Tract Map
Condominium Plan
Proprietary Lease