Important note: Your property owners' association's bylaws are the best source of information for how board and membership meetings are to be called and conducted. The sections of Texas law cited here place basic restrictions on the operations of these meetings.
Texas law requires property owners' associations to hold annual meetings of their members. If the board fails to call one, an owner may demand via certified mail that a meeting be held within 30 days of the demand.
Members of a property owners' association must be given notice of board meetings containing the date, time, location, and subject of the meeting. If it's a meeting that is to be held over the phone, information on how to connect and listen must be provided in the notice.
The board can give the association's members notice in one of two ways:
With the exception of discussions regarding confidential topics that can be discussed in closed executive sessions (please see Section 209.0051(c) of the Texas Property Code for a list of these topics), regular and special board meetings of property owners' associations must be open to the members.
Actions that cannot be taken by the board outside of an open meeting are listed in Section 209.0051(h) of the Texas Property Code. Topics that must be held at open meetings include considerations and votes on the following topics, among others:
Meeting minutes are part of the property owners' association records and must be made available to members of the association. They must also be kept for at least 7 years.
Generally, all owners of property subject to the property owners' association have the right to vote in elections for board members and regarding the rights and responsibilities of property owners.
In addition, certain property owners' associations may not prevent a member from voting because they owe assessments or have enforcement actions pending. Please see the text of Section 209.0055 of the Texas Property Code to see if this applies to your property owners' association.
Property owners must be given no less than 10 days notice and no more than 60 days notice in writing of an upcoming vote to be taken at an association meeting. For votes not taken at a meeting, the association must provide notice no less than 20 days before the last day a ballot can be submitted.
Texas law does not specify whether property owners' association elections must allow one vote per named owner of a piece of property or one vote per lot. For details about how votes are distributed in your association, please check the bylaws, election rules, or other governing documents.
Texas nonprofit corporation law does state that a list of voting members shall be prepared once a meeting is called. The list must be made available to all voting members or their agent or attorney for inspection or copying. It must be available in advance and at the meeting The list shall contain:
Texas law requires written ballots that are signed by the voting member for the following votes:
Under Texas law, electronic ballots qualify as written and signed.
Property owners' associations may adopt rules to allow members to vote by secret ballot, but they must include provisions that prevent a member from casting more votes than they are allotted and that all of their votes are counted.
Texas law requires property owners' associations to allow members to vote by absentee ballot or proxy. Please note that a vote cast in person supersedes an absentee ballot — if the member decides to attend a meeting to vote in person, their absentee ballot may not be counted.
Absentee ballots handed out by a property owners' association must contain specific information, including: