Many community associations hold their annual Board of Directors’ elections in the last quarter of the calendar year. This means that there may be up to 2-3 months in between when a new Board is elected and January of the next year. This often leads to confusion as to when the newly elected Board should take over- immediately after the annual meeting, or January 1st of the next year?
For the vast majority of community associations, the new Board will take over immediately after the annual election. This is based upon common Bylaws’ language stating that the Board members shall hold office “until their successors are elected by the Association”, or similar such language. In addition, most Bylaws provide that a newly elected Board will meet as a Board either immediately after the election, or within 10 days thereof or a similar short period of time, for the purpose of electing new officers from amongst the new Board members. All of these provisions call for a new Board to take over, and begin conducting business, immediately after the annual meeting at which they are elected.
The exception to the general rule that a new Board takes over immediately after the annual meeting at which they are elected is if the association’s Bylaws contain specific language stating that newly elected Board members will not begin their term until a later, future date.
Given that the turn-over in Board members can be abrupt and sometimes unexpected, it is good practice for those Board members who are up for re-election at an annual meeting to prepare for the possibility that they will not be on the Board following the annual meeting, and to compile all Association records, property and information in their possession prior to the annual meeting so that they can be easily turned over to a new Board if necessary. This will help to ensure a smooth, and more efficient, transition from the old Board to the new.