Title 15 -- Commerce and Trade


-CITE-
    15 USC CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE
                  CONVERSION PROTECTION AND ABUSE RELIEF         01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
    .
 
-HEAD-
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
    ABUSE RELIEF
 
-MISC1-
    Sec.
    3601. Congressional findings and purpose.
    3602. Conversion lending.
    3603. Definitions.
    3604. Exemptions.
    3605. Notice of conversion and opportunity to purchase;
      responsibility of State and local governments.
    3606. Federal Housing Administration mortgage or loan insurance;
      expedition of application process and decision.
    3607. Termination of self-dealing contracts.
                  (a) Operation, maintenance, and management contracts;
                        penalty.
                  (b) Time of termination.
                  (c) Vote of owners of units.
                  (d) Effective date of termination.
    3608. Judicial determinations respecting unconscionable leases.
                  (a) Lease characteristics; authorization by unit
                        owners; conditions precedent to action.
                  (b) Presumption of unconscionability; rebuttal.
                  (c) Presentation of evidence after finding of
                        unconscionability.
                  (d) Remedial relief; matters considered; attorneys'
                        fees.
                  (e) Actions allowed after termination of special
                        developer control.
    3609. Void lease or contract provisions.
    3610. Relationship of statutory provisions to State and local laws.
    3611. Additional remedies.
                  (a) Suits at law or equity.
                  (b) Recovery of actual damages.
                  (c) Contribution.
                  (d) Amounts recoverable; defendant's attorneys' fees.
    3612. Concurrent State and Federal jurisdiction; venue; removal of
      cases.
    3613. Limitation of actions.
    3614. Waiver of rights as void.
    3615. Nonexclusion of other statutory rights and remedies.
    3616. Separability.
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3601                                             01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3601. Congressional findings and purpose
 
-STATUTE-
      (a) The Congress finds and declares that -
        (1) there is a shortage of adequate and affordable housing
      throughout the Nation, especially for low- and moderate-income
      and elderly and handicapped persons;
        (2) the number of conversions of rental housing to condominiums
      and cooperatives is accelerating, which in some communities may
      restrict the shelter options of low- and moderate-income and
      elderly and handicapped persons;
        (3) certain long-term leasing arrangements for recreation and
      other condominium- or cooperative-related facilities which have
      been used in the formation of cooperative and condominium
      projects may be unconscionable; in certain situations State
      governments are unable to provide appropriate relief; as a result
      of these leases, economic and social hardships may have been
      imposed upon cooperative and condominium owners, which may
      threaten the continued use and acceptability of these forms of
      ownership and interfere with the interstate sale of cooperatives
      and condominiums; appropriate relief from these abuses requires
      Federal action; and
        (4) there is a Federal involvement with the cooperative and
      condominium housing markets through the operation of Federal tax,
      housing, and community development laws, through the operation of
      federally chartered and insured financial institutions, and
      through other Federal activities; that the creation of many
      condominiums and cooperatives is undertaken by entities operating
      on an interstate basis.
      (b) The purposes of this chapter are to seek to minimize the
    adverse impacts of condominium and cooperative conversions
    particularly on the housing opportunities of low- and
    moderate-income and elderly and handicapped persons, to assure fair
    and equitable principles are followed in the establishment of
    condominium and cooperative opportunities, and to provide
    appropriate relief where long-term leases of recreation and other
    cooperative- and condominium-related facilities are determined to
    be unconscionable.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 602, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1672.)
 
-MISC1-
                               EFFECTIVE DATE
      Section 618 of title VI of Pub. L. 96-399 provided that: ''The
    provisions of this title (enacting this chapter) shall become
    effective upon enactment (Oct. 8, 1980), except that section 609
    (section 3608 of this title), and the prohibition included in
    section 610 (section 3609 of this title) as it relates to a lease
    with respect to which a cause of action may be established under
    section 609, shall become effective one year after enactment.''
                                SHORT TITLE
      Section 601 of title VI of Pub. L. 96-399 provided that: ''This
    title (enacting this chapter) may be cited as the 'Condominium and
    Cooperative Abuse Relief Act of 1980'.''
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3602                                             01/23/00
 
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    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3602. Conversion lending
 
-STATUTE-
      It is the sense of the Congress that lending by federally insured
    lending institutions for the conversion of rental housing to
    condominiums and cooperative housing should be discouraged where
    there are adverse impacts on housing opportunities of the low- and
    moderate-income and elderly and handicapped tenants involved.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 603, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1673.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3603                                             01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3603. Definitions
 
-STATUTE-
      For the purpose of this chapter -
        (1) ''affiliate of a developer'' means any person who controls,
      is controlled by, or is under common control with a developer.  A
      person ''controls'' a developer if the person (A) is a general
      partner, officer, director, or employer of the developer, (B)
      directly or indirectly or acting in concert with one or more
      other persons, or through one or more subsidiaries, owns,
      controls, holds with power to vote, or holds proxies
      representing, more then 20 per centum of the voting interests of
      the developer, (C) controls in any manner the election of a
      majority of the directors of the developer, or (D) has
      contributed more than 20 per centum of the capital of the
      developer.  A person ''is controlled by'' a developer if the
      developer (i) is a general partner, officer, director or employer
      of the person, (ii) directly or indirectly or acting in concert
      with one or more other persons, or through one or more
      subsidiaries, owns, controls, holds with power to vote, or holds
      proxies representing, more than 20 per centum of the voting
      interests of the person, (iii) controls in any manner the
      election of a majority of the directors, or (iv) has contributed
      more than 20 per centum of the capital of the person;
        (2) ''automatic rent increase clause'' means a provision in a
      lease permitting periodic increases in the fee under the lease
      which is effective automatically or at the sole option of the
      lessor, and which provides that the fee shall increase at the
      rate of an economic, commodity, or consumer price index or at a
      percentage rate such that the actual increases in the rental
      payment over the lease term cannot be established with
      specificity at the time the lease is entered into;
        (3) ''common elements'' means all portions of the cooperative
      or condominium project, other than the units designated for
      separate ownership or for exclusive possession or use;
        (4) ''condominium association'' means the organization, whose
      membership consists exclusively of all the unit owners in the
      condominium project, which is, or will be responsible for the
      operation, administration, and management of the condominium
      project;
        (5) ''condominium project'' means real estate (A) which has
      five or more residential condominium units, in each residential
      structure, and the remaining portions of the real estate are
      designated for common ownership solely by the owners of those
      units, each owner having an undivided interest in the common
      elements, and (B) where such units are or have been offered for
      sale or sold, directly or indirectly, through the use of any
      means or instruments of transportation or communication of
      interstate commerce, or the mails;
        (6) ''condominium unit'' means a portion of a condominium
      project designated for separate ownership;
        (7) ''conversion project'' means a project, which has five or
      more residential units, which was used primarily for residential
      rental purposes immediately prior to being converted to a
      condominium or cooperative project;
        (8) ''convey or conveyance'' means (A) a transfer to a
      purchaser of legal title in a unit at settlement, other than as
      security for an obligation, or (B) the acquisition by a purchaser
      of a leasehold interest for more than five years;
        (9) ''cooperative association'' means an organization that owns
      the record interest in the residential cooperative property; or a
      leasehold of the residential property of a cooperative project
      and that is responsible for the operation of the cooperative
      project;
        (10) ''cooperative project'' means real estate (A) which has
      five or more residential cooperative units, in each residential
      structure, subject to separate use and possession by one or more
      individual cooperative unit owners whose interest in such units
      and in the undivided assets of the cooperative association which
      are appurtenant to the unit are evidenced by a membership or
      share interest in a cooperative association and a lease or other
      muniment of title or possession granted by the cooperative
      association as the owner of all the cooperative property, and (B)
      an interest in which is or has been offered for sale or lease or
      sold, or leased directly or indirectly, through use of any means
      or instruments of transportation or communication in interstate
      commerce or of the mails;
        (11) ''cooperative property'' means the real estate and
      personal property subject to cooperative ownership and all other
      property owned by the cooperative association;
        (12) ''cooperative unit'' means a part of the cooperative
      property which is subject to exclusive use and possession by a
      cooperative unit owner.  A unit may be improvements, land, or
      land and improvements together, as specified in the cooperative
      documents;
        (13) ''cooperative unit owner'' means the person having a
      membership or share interest in the cooperative association and
      holding a lease, or other muniment of title or possession, of a
      cooperative unit that is granted by the cooperative association
      as the owner of the cooperative property;
        (14) ''developer'' means (A) any person who offers to sell or
      sells his interest in a cooperative or condominium unit not
      previously conveyed, or (B) any successor of such person who
      offers to sell or sells his interests in units in a cooperative
      or condominium project and who has the authority to exercise
      special developer control in the project including the right to:
      add, convert, or withdraw real estate from the cooperative or
      condominium project, and maintain sales offices, management
      offices and rental units; exercise easements through common
      elements for the purpose of making improvements within the
      cooperative or condominium; or exercise control of the owners'
      association;
        (15) ''interstate commerce'' means trade, traffic,
      transportation, communication, or exchange among the States, or
      between any foreign country and a State, or any transaction which
      affects such trade, traffic, transportation, communication, or
      exchange;
        (16) ''lease'' includes any agreement or arrangement containing
      a condominium or cooperative unit owner's obligation,
      individually, collectively, or through an association to make
      payments for a leasehold interest or for other rights to use or
      possess real estate, or personal property (which rights may
      include the right to receive services with respect to such real
      estate or personal property), except a lease does not include
      mortgages or other such agreements for the purchase of real
      estate;
        (17) ''person'' means a natural person, corporation,
      partnership, association, trust or other entity, or any
      combination thereof;
        (18) ''purchaser'' means any person, other than a developer,
      who by means of a voluntary transfer acquires a legal or
      equitable interest in a unit other than (A) a leasehold interest
      (including renewal options) of less than five years, or (B) as
      security for an obligation;
        (19) ''real estate'' means any leasehold or other estate or
      interest in, over or under land, including structures, fixtures,
      and other improvements and interests which by custom, usage, or
      law pass with a conveyance of land though not described in the
      contract of sale or instrument of conveyance. ''Real estate''
      includes parcels with or without upper or lower boundaries, and
      spaces that may be filled with air or water;
        (20) ''residential'' means used as a dwelling;
        (21) ''sale'', ''sale of a cooperative unit'' or ''sale of a
      condominium unit'' means any obligation or arrangement for
      consideration for conveyance to a purchaser of a cooperative or
      condominium unit, excluding options or reservations not binding
      on the purchaser;
        (22) ''special developer control'' means any right arising
      under State law, cooperative or condominium instruments, the
      association's bylaws, charter or articles of association or
      incorporation, or power of attorney or similar agreement, through
      which the developer may control or direct the unit owners'
      association or its executive board.  A developer's right to
      exercise the voting share allocated to any condominium or
      cooperative unit which he owns is not deemed a right of special
      developer control if the voting share allocated to that
      condominium or cooperative unit is the same voting share as would
      be allocated to the same condominium or cooperative unit were
      that unit owned by any other unit owner at that time;
        (23) ''State'' includes the several States, the District of
      Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the territories
      and possessions of the United States; and
        (24) ''tenants' organization'' means a bona fide organization
      of tenants who represent a majority of the occupied rental units
      in a rental housing project.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 604, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1673.)
 
-SECREF-
                   SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS
      This section is referred to in title 12 sections 1441a, 1831q.
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3604                                             01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3604. Exemptions
 
-STATUTE-
      The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to -
        (1) a cooperative or condominium unit sold or offered for sale
      by the Federal Government, by any State or local government, by
      any corporate instrumentality of the United States, or by any
      agency thereof;
        (2) a cooperative or condominium project in which all units are
      restricted to nonresidential purposes or uses; or
        (3) any lease or portion thereof -
          (A) which establishes any leasehold or other estate or
        interest in, over or under land on or in which one or more
        residential condominium or cooperative units are located, the
        termination of which will terminate the condominium or
        cooperative project, or reduce the number of units in such
        project, or
          (B) which establishes a leasehold interest in, or other
        rights to use, possess, or gain access to, a condominium or
        cooperative unit.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 605, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1675.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3605                                             01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3605. Notice of conversion and opportunity to purchase;
        responsibility of State and local governments
 
-STATUTE-
      It is the sense of the Congress that, when multifamily rental
    housing projects are converted to condominium or cooperative use,
    tenants in those projects are entitled to adequate notice of the
    pending conversion and to receive the first opportunity to purchase
    units in the converted projects and that State and local
    governments which have not already provided for such notice and
    opportunity for purchase should move toward that end.  The Congress
    believes it is the responsibility of State and local governments to
    provide for such notice and opportunity to purchase in a prompt
    manner.  The Congress has decided not to intervene and therefore
    leaves this responsibility to State and local governments to be
    carried out.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 606, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1676.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3606                                             01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3606. Federal Housing Administration mortgage or loan
        insurance; expedition of application process and decision
 
-STATUTE-
      Where an application for mortgage or loan insurance in connection
    with a conversion or purchase of a rental housing project being
    undertaken by a tenants' organization is submitted, the Secretary
    of Housing and Urban Development shall expedite the processing of
    the application in every way and shall make a final decision on
    such application at the earliest practicable time.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 607, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1676.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3607                                             01/23/00
 
-EXPCITE-
    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3607. Termination of self-dealing contracts
 
-STATUTE-
    (a) Operation, maintenance, and management contracts; penalty
      Any contract or portion thereof which is entered into after
    October 8, 1980, and which -
        (1) provides for operation, maintenance, or management of a
      condominium or cooperative association in a conversion project,
      or of property serving the condominium or cooperative unit owners
      in such project;
        (2) is between such unit owners or such association and the
      developer or an affiliate of the developer;
        (3) was entered into while such association was controlled by
      the developer through special developer control or because the
      developer held a majority of the votes in such association; and
        (4) is for a period of more than three years, including any
      automatic renewal provisions which are exercisable at the sole
      option of the developer or an affiliate of the developer,
    may be terminated without penalty by such unit owners or such
    association.
    (b) Time of termination
      Any termination under this section may occur only during the
    two-year period beginning on the date on which -
        (1) special developer control over the association is
      terminated; or
        (2) the developer owns 25 per centum or less of the units in
      the conversion project,
    whichever occurs first.
    (c) Vote of owners of units
      A termination under this section shall be by a vote of owners of
    not less than two-thirds of the units other than the units owned by
    the developer or an affiliate of the developer.
    (d) Effective date of termination
      Following the unit owners' vote, the termination shall be
    effective ninety days after hand delivering notice or mailing
    notice by prepaid United States mail to the parties to the
    contract.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 608, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1676.)
 
-COD-
                                CODIFICATION
      In subsec. (a), ''October 8, 1980'' was substituted for ''the
    effective date of this title''.  See Effective Date note set out
    under section 3601 of this title.
 
-SECREF-
                   SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS
      This section is referred to in sections 3609, 3611 of this title.
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3608                                             01/23/00
 
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    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3608. Judicial determinations respecting unconscionable leases
 
-STATUTE-
    (a) Lease characteristics; authorization by unit owners; conditions
        precedent to action
      Cooperative and condominium unit owners through the unit owners'
    association may bring an action seeking a judicial determination
    that a lease or leases, or portions thereof, were unconscionable at
    the time they were made.  An action may be brought under this
    section if each such lease has all of the following
    characteristics:
        (1) it was made in connection with a cooperative or condominium
      project;
        (2) it was entered into while the cooperative or condominium
      owners' association was controlled by the developer either
      through special developer control or because the developer held a
      majority of the votes in the owners' association;
        (3) it had to be accepted or ratified by purchasers or through
      the unit owners' association as a condition of purchase of a unit
      in the cooperative or condominium project;
        (4) it is for a period of more than twenty-one years or is for
      a period of less than twenty-one years but contains automatic
      renewal provisions for a period of more than twenty-one years;
        (5) it contains an automatic rent increase clause; and
        (6) it was entered into prior to June 4, 1975.
    Such action must be authorized by the cooperative or condominium
    unit owners through a vote of not less than two-thirds of the
    owners of the units other than units owned by the developer or an
    affiliate of the developer, and may be brought by the cooperative
    or condominium unit owners through the units owners' association.
    Prior to instituting such action, the cooperative or condominium
    unit owners must, through a vote of not less than two-thirds of the
    owners of the units other than units owned by the developer or an
    affiliate of the developer, agree to enter into negotiation with
    the lessor and must seek through such negotiation to eliminate or
    modify any lease terms that are alleged to be unconscionable; if an
    agreement is not reached in ninety days from the date on which the
    authorizing vote was taken, the unit owners may authorize an action
    after following the procedure specified in the preceding sentence.
    (b) Presumption of unconscionability; rebuttal
      A rebuttal presumption of unconscionability exists if it is
    established that, in addition to the characteristics set forth in
    subsection (a) of this section, the lease -
        (1) creates a lien subjecting any unit to foreclosure for
      failure to make payments;
        (2) contains provisions requiring either the cooperative or
      condominium unit owners or the cooperative or condominium
      association as lessees to assume all or substantially all
      obligations and liabilities associated with the maintenance,
      management and use of the leased property, in addition to the
      obligation to make lease payments;
        (3) contains an automatic rent increase clause without
      establishing a specific maximum lease payment; and
        (4) requires an annual rental which exceeds 25 per centum of
      the appraised value of the leased property as improved: Provided,
      That, for purposes of this paragraph ''annual rental'' means the
      amount due during the first twelve months of the lease for all
      units, regardless of whether such units were occupied or sold
      during that period, and ''appraised value'' means the appraised
      value placed upon the leased property the first tax year after
      the sale of a unit in the condominium or after the sale of a
      membership or share interest in the cooperative association to a
      party who is not an affiliate of the developer.
    Once the rebuttable presumption is established, the court, in
    making its finding, shall consider the lease or portion of the
    lease to be unconscionable unless proven otherwise by the
    preponderance of the evidence to the contrary.
    (c) Presentation of evidence after finding of unconscionability
      Whenever it is claimed, or appears to the court, that a lease or
    any portion thereof is, or may have been, unconscionable at the
    time it was made, the parties shall be afforded a reasonable
    opportunity to present evidence at least as to-
        (1) the commercial setting of the negotiations;
        (2) whether a party has knowingly taken advantage of the
      inability of the other party reasonably to protect his interests;
        (3) the effect and purpose of the lease or portion of the lease
      or portion thereof, including its relationship to other contracts
      between the association, the unit owners and the developer or an
      affiliate of the developer; and
        (4) the disparity between the amount charged under the lease
      and the value of the real estate subject to the lease measured by
      the price at which similar real estate was readily obtainable in
      similar transactions.
    (d) Remedial relief; matters considered; attorneys' fees
      Upon finding that any lease, or portion thereof, is
    unconscionable, the court shall exercise its authority to grant
    remedial relief as necessary to avoid an unconscionable result,
    taking into consideration the economic value of the lease.  Such
    relief may include, but shall not be limited to rescission,
    reformation, restitution, the award of damages and reasonable
    attorney fees and court costs.  A defendant may recover reasonable
    attorneys' fees if the court determines that the cause of action
    filed by the plantiff (FOOTNOTE 1) is frivolous, malicious, or
    lacking in substantial merit.
       (FOOTNOTE 1) So in original.  Probably should be ''plaintiff''.
    (e) Actions allowed after termination of special developer control
      Nothing in this section may be construed to authorize the
    bringing of an action by cooperative and condominium unit owners'
    association, seeking a judicial determination that a lease or
    leases, or portions thereof, are unconscionable, where such unit
    owners or a unit owners' association representing them has, after
    the termination of special developer control, reached an agreement
    with a holder of such lease or leases which either -
        (1) sets forth the terms and conditions under which such lease
      or leases is or shall be purchased by such unit owners or
      associations; or
        (2) reforms any clause in the lease which contained an
      automatic rent increase clause, unless such agreement was entered
      into when the leaseholder or his affiliate held a majority of the
      votes in the owners' association.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 609, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1677.)
 
-MISC1-
                               EFFECTIVE DATE
      Section effective one year after Oct. 8, 1980, see section 618 of
    Pub. L. 96-399, set out as a note under section 3601 of this title.
 
-SECREF-
                   SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS
      This section is referred to in sections 3609, 3610, 3611, 3613 of
    this title.
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3609                                             01/23/00
 
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    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3609. Void lease or contract provisions
 
-STATUTE-
      Any provision in any lease or contract requiring unit owners or
    the owners' association, in any conversion project involving a
    contract meeting the requirements of section 3607 of this title of
    in any project involving a lease meeting the requirements of
    section 3608 of this title, to reimburse, regardless of outcome,
    the developer, his successor, or affiliate of the developer for
    attorneys' fees or money judgments, in a suit between unit owners
    or the owners' association and the developer arising under the
    lease or agreement, is against public policy and void.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 610, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1678.)
 
-MISC1-
                               EFFECTIVE DATE
      Section effective Oct. 8, 1980, except that prohibition included
    in this section as it relates to a lease with respect to which a
    cause of action may be established under section 3608 of this
    title, shall be effective one year after Oct. 8, 1980, see section
    618 of Pub. L. 96-399, set out as a note under section 3601 of this
    title.
 
-SECREF-
                   SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS
      This section is referred to in sections 3610, 3611 of this title.
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3610                                             01/23/00
 
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    TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
    CHAPTER 62 - CONDOMINIUM AND COOPERATIVE CONVERSION PROTECTION AND
         ABUSE RELIEF
 
-HEAD-
    Sec. 3610. Relationship of statutory provisions to State and local
        laws
 
-STATUTE-
      Nothing in this chapter may be construed to prevent or limit the
    authority of any State or local government to enact and enforce any
    law, ordinance, or code with regard to any condominium,
    cooperative, or conversion project, if such law, ordinance, or code
    does not abridge, deny, or contravene any standard for consumer
    protection established under this chapter.  Notwithstanding the
    preceding sentence, the provisions of this chapter, except for the
    application of section 3608 of this title and the prohibition
    included in section 3609 of this title as it relates to a lease
    with respect to which a cause of action may be established under
    section 3608 of this title, shall not apply in the case of any
    State or local government which has the authority to enact and
    enforce such a law, ordinance, or code, if, during the three-year
    period following October 8, 1980, such State or local government
    enacts a law, ordinance, or code, or amendments thereto, stating in
    substance that such provisions of this chapter shall not apply in
    that State or local government jurisdiction.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 611, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1679.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3611                                             01/23/00
 
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-HEAD-
    Sec. 3611. Additional remedies
 
-STATUTE-
    (a) Suits at law or equity
      Unless otherwise limited as in section 3607 or 3608 of this
    title, any person aggrieved by a violation of this chapter may sue
    at law or in equity.
    (b) Recovery of actual damages
      In any action authorized by this section for a violation of
    section 3607 or 3609 of this title where actual damages have been
    suffered, such damages may be awarded or such other relief granted
    as deemed fair, just, and equitable.
    (c) Contribution
      Every person who becomes liable to make any payment under this
    section may recover contributions from any person who if sued
    separately, would have been liable to make the same payment.
    (d) Amounts recoverable; defendant's attorneys' fees
      The amounts recoverable under this section may include interest
    paid, reasonable attorneys' fees, independent engineer and
    appraisers' fees, and court costs.  A defendant may recover
    reasonable attorneys' fees if the court determines that the cause
    of action filed by the plaintiff is frivolous, malicious, or
    lacking in substantial merit.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 612, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1679.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3612                                             01/23/00
 
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-HEAD-
    Sec. 3612. Concurrent State and Federal jurisdiction; venue;
        removal of cases
 
-STATUTE-
      The district courts of the United States, the United States
    courts of any territory, and the United States District Court for
    the District of Columbia shall have jurisdiction under this chapter
    and, concurrent with State courts, of actions at law or in equity
    brought under this chapter without regard to the amount in
    controversy.  Any such action may be brought in the district
    wherein the defendant is found or is an inhabitant or transacts
    business, or in the district where the sale took place, and process
    in such cases may be served in other districts of which the
    defendant is an inhabitant or wherever the defendant may be found.
    No case arising under this chapter and brought in any State court
    of competent jurisdiction shall be removed to any court of the
    United States, except where any officer or employee of the United
    States in his official capacity is a party.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 613, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1679.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3613                                             01/23/00
 
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-HEAD-
    Sec. 3613. Limitation of actions
 
-STATUTE-
      No action shall be maintained to enforce any right or liability
    created by this chapter unless brought within six years after such
    cause of action accrued, except that an action pursuant to section
    3608 of this title must be brought within four years after October
    8, 1980.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 614, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1680.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3614                                             01/23/00
 
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-HEAD-
    Sec. 3614. Waiver of rights as void
 
-STATUTE-
      Any condition, stipulation, or provision binding any person to
    waive compliance with any provisions of this chapter shall be void.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 615, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1680.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3615                                             01/23/00
 
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-HEAD-
    Sec. 3615. Nonexclusion of other statutory rights and remedies
 
-STATUTE-
      The rights and remedies provided by this chapter shall be in
    addition to any and all other rights and remedies that may exist
    under Federal or State law.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 616, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1680.)
 
-CITE-
    15 USC Sec. 3616                                             01/23/00
 
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-HEAD-
    Sec. 3616. Separability
 
-STATUTE-
      If any provisions of this chapter or the application thereof to
    any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of this
    chapter shall not be affected thereby.
 
-SOURCE-
    (Pub. L. 96-399, title VI, Sec. 617, Oct. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1680.)


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