Suspension of Voting Rights

Provisions of an association’s bylaws may provide for the manner in which the association may suspend a member’s voting rights, consistent with the procedural requirements set forth in Corporations Code Section 7341. (Corp. Code § 7151(d).) Section 7341 generally requires the use of “due process,” including providing at least fifteen (15) days advance notice to the member of the board’s intent to suspend the member’s voting rights, as well as an opportunity for the member to meet with the board and discuss the proposed suspension (i.e., at a “hearing” with the board). (Corp. Code § 7341(c).) These requirements are generally aligned with the procedure required under Civil Code Section 5855 before a board may impose disciplinary measures on a member (i.e., levying a fine or reimbursement assessment against the member). (See “Notice & Hearing Requirements.”) However, while Section 5855 only requires ten (10) days advance notice for such measures, Section 7341 requires at least fifteen (15) days advance notice if the board intends to suspend the member’s voting rights. (Corp. Code §7341(c)(2).)

The most common basis for suspending a member’s voting rights pertains to situations where the member is delinquent in the payment of assessments to the association.

Impact of Suspension: Quorum & Approval Requirements
To the extent that any members of an association have had their voting rights validly suspended, it will likely impact the quorum requirements applicable to holding a membership meeting, as well as the approval requirements associated with a ballot measure being voted on by the association’s membership.