2019 Georgia Code
Title 44 - Property
Chapter 3 - Regulation of Specialized Land Transactions
Article 3 - Condominiums
§ 44-3-80. Allocation -- Liability for common expenses; how assessments made
(a) Except to the extent that the condominium instruments provide otherwise, any common expenses associated with the maintenance, repair, renovation, restoration, or replacement of any limited common element shall be specially assessed against the condominium unit to which that limited common element was assigned at the time the expenses were made or incurred; however, if any limited common element was assigned at that time to more than one unit, the common expenses shall be specifically assessed against each condominium unit equally so that the total of the special assessments equals the total of the expenses.
(b) To the extent that the condominium instruments expressly so provide:
(1) Any other common expenses benefiting less than all of the units shall be specially assessed equitably among all of the condominium units so benefited;
(2) Any other common expenses occasioned by the conduct of less than all of those entitled to occupy all of the units or by the licensees or invitees of any such unit or units shall be specially assessed against the condominium unit or units, the conduct of any occupant, licensee, or invitee of which occasioned any such common expenses;
(3) Any other common expenses significantly disproportionately benefiting all of the units shall be assessed equitably among all of the condominium units; and
(4) Other than for limited common elements expressly designated as such in the condominium instruments and assigned to fewer than all units, nothing contained in paragraph (1) or (3) of this subsection shall permit an association to specially or disproportionately allocate common expenses for periodic maintenance, repair, and replacement of any portion of the common elements or the units which the association has the obligation to maintain, repair, or replace.
(c) The amount of all common expenses not specially assessed pursuant to subsection (a) or (b) of this Code section, less the amount of all undistributed and unreserved common profits, shall be assessed against the condominium units in accordance with the allocation of liability for common expenses set forth in the declaration. The allocation may be by percentage, fraction, formula, or any other method which indicates the relative liabilities for common expenses. If an equal liability for common expenses is allocated to each unit, the declaration may merely so state. The entire liability for common expenses shall be allocated among the units depicted on plats or plans that comply with subsections (a) and (b) of Code Section 44-3-83 and shall be subject to reallocation as provided in this article. Except to the extent otherwise expressly provided or permitted by this article, the allocations of the liability shall not be altered; provided, however, that no reallocation shall affect any assessment or installation thereof becoming due and payable prior to reallocation. The assessments shall be made by the association annually or more often if the condominium instruments so provide and shall be payable in the manner determined by the association. Notwithstanding any unequal allocation of liabilities for common expenses pursuant to this subsection, this provision shall not preclude the association from levying charges equally among units for services or items provided to owners upon request, or which provide proportionate or uniform benefit to the units, including, but not limited to, uniform charges for pool keys or other common element entry devices.
(1) The declarant shall pay for all common expenses until the first common expense assessment is due from any unit owner. Thereafter, no unit owner other than the association shall be exempted from any liability for any assessment under this Code section or under any condominium instrument for any reason whatsoever, including, without limitation, abandonment, nonuse, or waiver of the use or enjoyment of his or her unit or any part of the common elements.
(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) of this subsection, if authorized by the declaration, a declarant who is offering units for sale may elect to be excused from payment of assessments assessed pursuant to subsection (c) of this Code section against those unsold and unoccupied units for a stated period of time after the original declaration is recorded, not to exceed 24 months after the date the original declaration is recorded; provided, however, that as to assessments assessed pursuant to subsection (c) of this Code section, the declarant must pay common expenses incurred during such period which exceed the amounts assessed against other unit owners in the same condominium. During any period in which the declarant is excused from payment of assessments assessed pursuant to subsection (c) of this Code section:
(A) No capital contributions, start-up funds, initiation fees, or contributions to capital reserve accounts which are receivable from unit purchasers or unit owners and payable to the association at closing may be used for payment of common expenses;
(B) No portion of the payment of assessments collected from owners intended to be utilized for reserves for deferred maintenance, reserves for depreciation, or other reserves, as shown on the operating budget for the condominium, may be used for payment of common expenses; and
(C) No prepayments of assessments made by owners shall be used for the payment of common expenses prior to the time the assessments would otherwise be due.
(3) If during the period that the declarant is excused from payment of assessments as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection common expenses are incurred resulting from a casualty which is not covered by proceeds from insurance maintained by the association, such common expenses shall be assessed against all unit owners owning units on the date of such casualty, and their respective successors and assigns, including the declarant with respect to units owned by the declarant. In the event of such an assessment, all units shall be assessed in accordance with the allocation of the liability for common expenses set forth in the declaration as provided in subsection (c) of this Code section.
(4) During any such time as the declarant has the right to control the association pursuant to Code Section 44-3-101, any capital contributions, start-up funds, initiation fees, or contributions to capital reserve accounts which are receivable from unit purchasers or unit owners and payable to the association at closing and any portion of the payment of assessments collected from owners intended to be utilized for reserves for deferred maintenance, reserves for depreciation, or other reserves, as shown on the operating budget for the condominium, shall be deposited into one or more separate reserve accounts and shall not be used to pay for any common expenses, without the agreement of the unit owners of units to which two-thirds of the votes in the association pertain, exclusive of any vote or votes appurtenant to any unit or units then owned by the declarant. No waiver of the right of any unit owner to grant or withhold consent to such agreement shall be valid.
(e) Unless otherwise provided in the condominium instruments and except as provided in subsection (f) of this Code section, the grantee in a conveyance of a condominium unit shall be jointly and severally liable with the grantor thereof for all unpaid assessments against the latter up to the time of the conveyance without prejudice to the grantee's right to recover from the grantor the amounts paid by the grantee therefor; provided, however, that, if the grantor or grantee shall request a statement from the association as provided in Code Section 44-3-109, such grantee and his successors, successors-in-title, and assigns shall not be liable for nor shall the condominium unit conveyed be subject to a lien for any unpaid assessments against such grantor in excess of any amount set forth in the statement.
(f) In the event that the holder of a first priority mortgage or a secondary purchase money mortgage of record, provided that neither the grantee nor any successor grantee on the secondary purchase money mortgage is the seller of the unit, or any other person acquires title to any condominium unit as a result of foreclosure of any such mortgage, such holder or other person and successors, successors-in-title, and assigns shall not be liable for nor shall the condominium unit be subject to a lien for any assessment under this Code section or under any condominium instrument chargeable to the condominium unit on account of any period prior to the acquisition of title; provided, however, that the unpaid share of an assessment or assessments shall be deemed to be common expenses collectable from all of the unit owners, including such holder or other person and successors, successors-in-title, and assigns.
(g) A condominium instrument recorded on or after July 1, 2015, shall not authorize the board of directors to impose:
(1) Except as provided in subsections (a) and (b) of this Code section and subsections (a) and (b) of Code Section 44-3-109, a special assessment fee per unit in excess of one-sixth of the annual common expense assessment for the unit levied pursuant to subsection (c) of this Code section per fiscal year without the approval of a majority of the unit owners; or
(2) A monthly maintenance fee increase in excess of the percentage equal to the annual rate of inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers for the immediately preceding 12 month period may be disapproved by unit owners holding a majority of the association vote.
Ga. L. 1975, p. 609, § 17; Ga. L. 1990, p. 227, § 3; Ga. L. 1994, p. 1943, §§ 3, 4; Ga. L. 2004, p. 560, § 3; Ga. L. 2007, p. 611, § 2/HB 383; Ga. L. 2015, p. 889, § 1/HB 245.