TRENTON, N.J. – On Thursday Assemblyman Brian Bergen’s bill that will protect homeowners associations from civil lawsuits against Covid-19 exposure or transmission was signed into law.
“This bipartisan legislation is a win for those homeowners associations that chose to keep communal areas closed in 2020 due to law concerns relating to Covid-19. This law will allow them to open those areas at their discretion while protecting them from lawsuits should any residents or guests be exposed to or come down with the disease,” Bergen (R-Morris) said. “Condominium and townhome residents can get back into their shared pools and gyms.”
Most insurance policies held by associations exclude coverage for communicable disease outbreaks, which could make opening common areas a costly mistake. The new law (A4979/S3584) will protect associations only against claims of negligence, a move the Community Associations Institute of New Jersey supports.
The law will not provide immunity for “acts or omissions constituting a crime, actual fraud, actual malice, gross negligence, recklessness or willful misconduct.”
The law takes effect immediately, but will expire Jan. 1, 2022.