June 14, 2021
Michael Karpoff Speaks at the CAI Connecticut Chapter on Condos and Constitutional Law – Flags and Free SpeechMichael Karpoff recently was the featured speaker for “Condos & Constitutional Law – Flags and Free Speech,” a webinar conducted by the Connecticut Chapter of the Community Associations Institute (CAI).
Michael explained that Connecticut does not recognize either a Federal or State constitutional right to speech on private property or in private organizations.
However, other sources provide rights to speech for community association members in the State, such as provisions in the association governing documents, the governing board’s fiduciary duty, and rights implied by and derived from the relationship established between the association and its members.
Connecticut also has a number of statutes expressly giving common interest owners rights to obtain information and share information and comments.A focus of the presentation was the extent of associations’ rights to regulate flags, signs and banners. A number of statutes require associations to allow homeowners to display the United States flag, the Connecticut State flag, and certain types of political signs, but communities may establish reasonable time, place and manner restrictions. Other displays may be prohibited in the discretion of the association.
Nevertheless, associations are advised to enable their members to reasonably communicate with the board and with each other, to assure that any restrictions are reasonable, and, except as required or allowed by statute, to treat members equitably, without discriminating based on message or who the speaker is.Michael is a fellow of the national College of Community Association Lawyers and is certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a civil trial attorney. He has written numerous articles concerning common interest association law and particularly the right to speech in community associations and has lectured on such topics for the Community Associations Institute’s national Community Association Law Seminar, the New Jersey and Pennsylvania/Delaware Valley Chapters of CAI, as well as Seton Hall Law School and the N.J. Institute for Continuing Legal Education.
He served as chairman of the New Jersey State Bar Association’s Common Interest Ownership Committee and as a member of the Editorial Board and Peer Review Panel of the Journal of Community Association Law. He also served as a member of the board of directors of the New Jersey Chapter of CAI from 2008 to 2013 and as a member of CAI National’s Amicus Curiae Review Committee.