The Illinois Supreme Court has affirmed the Appellate Court’s 2014 decision in 1010 Lake Shore Drive Condominium Association v Deutsche Bank, which had held that an Illinois Condominium Association’s right to collect pre-foreclosure assessments is not necessarily wiped out by the confirmation of the foreclosure sale. The Supreme Court held that the assessment lien for pre-foreclosure assessments is only extinguished if two things occur, (i) the foreclosing lender names the condominium association as a party to the foreclosure suit and (ii) the purchaser at the foreclosure sale pays the assessments as they accrue beginning the month following the foreclosure sale.
The Supreme Court held that the payment of assessments after the foreclosure sale is essential “to confirm the extinguishment of the lien created by the prior owner’s failure to pay assessments.” The Supreme Court emphasized that the Illinois Condominium Act protects mortgage lenders by allowing the lender “from time to time (to) request in writing a written statement *** setting forth the unpaid common expenses with respect to the unit covered …” by the loan. Associations are cautioned to respond promptly to any such request to avoid giving a lender a possible defense to an action for pre-foreclosure assessments.
Associations with units delinquent in assessments which are being foreclosed are advised to consult legal counsel in order to make sure they recover the maximum amount of delinquent assessments available in this change area of the law. Feel free to contact a Kreisler Law condominium attorney, if you have any questions regarding collection of delinquent condominium assessments or if you need assistance or advice regarding other areas of condominium law.
Illinois condominium associations have an extremely effective tool for collecting assessments from delinquent condominium unit owners. In Illinois, a condominium association can actually evict a unit owner from his or her unit and then lease the unit out and collect the rents from the unit to pay for past due assessments, the legal expenses of pursuing the eviction as well as currently accruing assessments. The association does not have to pay the mortgage payments or real estate taxes which accrue while the rents are being applied against assessments and expenses of collection.
The condominium eviction process takes four months or more, so associations need to be diligent in asserting their rights. This is especially true in that unit owners who are delinquent in paying their assessments often are also delinquent in making their mortgage payments, eventually resulting in mortgage foreclosure.
To move forward with a condominium eviction, the association must first prepare and serve a 30 day notice and demand for possession. This notice must be mailed to the unit owner by certified mail. When thirty days have passed without the assessments having been paid, the eviction suit may then be filed. The suit is filed as what is called a “joint action”, which seeks a personal judgment against the unit owner as well as an order of possession (eviction order). When the matter reaches trial, the eviction statute requires the court to stay the enforcement of the eviction order for at least sixty days. Only then may the association employ the Sheriff to secure possession of the unit.
Feel free to contact a Kreisler Law condominium attorney, if you have any questions regarding the rights and responsibilities of delinquent Illinois condominium association unit owners, regarding collection of delinquent condominium assessments or if you need assistance or advice regarding other areas of condominium law.