Skip to main content

Coops and Condos: Using Common Areas for Personal Events

By November 7, 2011April 15th, 2018General Updates

Congratulations to our President, Edward J. Mackoul, CIC, who was recently published in The Cooperator Coop & Condo Monthly Newspaper.

Providing guidance and advice to Cooperative and Condominium Owners, Coop and Condo Unit Owners, Boards and Property Managers is a specialty of the insurance professionals at Mackoul & Associates, Inc. Read below to see how Ed was able to provide some helpful tips to “Legally Liable” in the question and answer section below.

Q&A: Determining Guidelines to Limit Liability

By Edward J. Mackoul, CIC

Q: Our condo building has a lot attached with parking for six cars. On the far side of the lot there is a garden and playground. We have a member who has requested to use the garden, playground and parking lot for a party. Cars will be coming in and out during the party, so while I don’t want to be unreasonable, I feel it’s dangerous to have people in the same area. Are there any guidelines about this issue that might help our condo association come to an agreement?

– Legally Liable

A: “Although there are no specific guidelines, the bylaws might contain information under use of common property that may be helpful,” says Edward J. Mackoul, CIC, president of the New York based insurance firm Mackoul & Associates, Inc. “Since the property is not intended for this use, if it has to be done, the condo board should block off the parking area and not allow any cars to enter. Combine people unfamiliar with the property, cars being driven in a small area and possible alcohol consumption, and you have a recipe for disaster. The parking area can be segregated with cones, tape, signage or rope.”

“In addition, there should be written guidelines between the condominium and unit owner specifying the hours of the party, the number of guests attending, whether alcohol is being served, etc. Because insurance carriers providing Homeowners Insurance for Condo Unit Owners generally will not add the condominium as an additional insured onto the Homeowners Policy, the unit owner hosting the party should be required to take out a special events insurance policy for that night. This special events insurance policy can be endorsed to include the condominium as well as an additional insured and a certificate of insurance reflecting the condominium’s additional insured status should be provided to the board well before the party is allowed to begin. Lastly, the unit owner should sign a waiver of indemnification releasing the condominium and holding them harmless for any injuries or liabilities resulting from the party.”

“The board must be prepared that if they allow this one unit owner to use these areas for a party that they are setting a precedent for the future, as others will want to use it as well.”

We hope you’ve enjoyed this question and answer session that was published in The Cooperator. Do you have any questions regarding your Coop or Condo Insurance? Post them as a comment below!

Skip to content