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Proxies for Annual Meeting When No Votes Are Planned?


Guest Steve Smith
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We are required to hold an annual meeting for the neighborhood HOA. There are no votes planned at this meeting because directors serve 2yr terms and were elected last year. It appears from our documents that we need to have a quorum (20% of membership) to have the meeting. These meetings are typically lightly attended, so proxies are important to obtain quorum. My question is, what should a proxy form look like when there aren't any specific votes planned?

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So it that like a refusal to answer the question? FAQ #10 says that Robert's Rules doesn't speak specifically to this issue, instead pointing to the by-laws or other laws concerning proxies. I already said our by-laws permit proxies and require a quorum. There are a lot of master parliamentarians around here so I just wanted to know what other people do in these situations. I've seen reference to a "quorum only proxy" so perhaps that's the way to go.

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The phrase you used:  "When no votes are planned" may represent a bit of assumption  --  who knows what might come up of concern to your homeowners that someone, in New Business, may make a motion about.

Thing is about proxies is that they are legal documents,  powers of attorney, as noted on page 428, and we ain't lawyers here.  Your state HOA laws (or other laws) may well have something to say about the form of proxies so check with the secretary of state where you live.  Nobody is "refusing" to answer your question  --  well, actually we all are but we don't want to get in trouble practicing law without a license.

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Saying "well here's what I've done personally, but consult an attorney" is not practicing law without a license. I should know as an attorney myself. Just looking for a friendly pointer in the right direction. It looks like I've already found it based upon my research - a quorum only proxy - but good gravy guys....

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I think you are missing the point.  This is not a general parliamentary procedure board but very specific to Robert Rules.  If your question is not addressed by RONR we would not answer it here.  Also as an attorney you should respect the fact that we do not know the laws specific to your jurisdiction and thus do not want to recommend practices that may violate the law.

Edited by SaintCad
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1 hour ago, Guest Steve Smith said:

Saying "well here's what I've done personally, but consult an attorney" is not practicing law without a license. I should know as an attorney myself. Just looking for a friendly pointer in the right direction. It looks like I've already found it based upon my research - a quorum only proxy - but good gravy guys....

Hopefully, lawyers know something about the law governing corporations as well as the law of agency in their particular jurisdictions, since these are the laws which govern the use of proxies, and take precedence over parliamentary law. So look in that direction (which you ought to know something about).

As far a parliamentary law is concerned, "Proxy voting is not permitted in ordinary deliberative assemblies unless the laws of the state in which the society is incorporated require it, or the charter or bylaws of the organization provide for it. Ordinarily it should neither be allowed nor required, because proxy voting is incompatible with the essential characteristics of a deliberative assembly in which membership is individual, personal, and nontransferable."  (RONR, 11th ed., pp. 428-29) 

 

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