The Washington Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act (WUCIOA) took effect July 1, 2018, and is applicable to residential common interest communities (CIC) created after that date. A CIC includes condominiums, cooperatives, leasehold CICs, miscellaneous communities, and plat communities. A CIC created prior to the effective date of WUCIOA may choose to opt-in to WUCIOA.
WUCIOA contains numerous provisions regarding the management of a CIC. As part of its duties, an association must adopt budgets and impose assessments for common expenses, which usually include the association's expenditures for administration, maintenance, repair, and replacement of the common elements of a CIC, as well as any allocations to reserves. An association may also impose and collect reasonable fines for violations, in accordance with a schedule of previously adopted fines.
When a unit owner does not pay assessments as required, an association may collect reasonable charges for late payments and establish a rate of interest to be charged on all subsequent delinquent assessments. An association is entitled to recover any costs and reasonable attorneys' fees incurred in connection with the collection of delinquent assessments.
Under WUCIOA, an association has a statutory lien on each unit for any unpaid assessment against the unit from the time the assessment is due. With some exceptions, the association's lien takes priority over all other liens and encumbrances. To collect unpaid assessments, an association may bring an action to collect unpaid assessments or foreclose its lien on the unit.
An association may not commence an action to foreclose a lien for past-due assessments unless the unit owner, at the time the action is commenced, owes a sum equal to at least three months of common expense assessments and the board approves commencement of a foreclosure action specifically against that unit.
An association may not commence a foreclosure action against a unit owner in a common interest community unless: