Despite the never-ending rains this year, pool season is here, and now is a good time to make sure your pool rules are up to date and your pool is up and running. Pools are a wonderful amenity for an association, but they also come with potential risks and liabilities. Outlined below are some things to think about with regard to the pool season.
- If your association has not been able to open its pool yet due to the rains, the association should inspect the facility, which includes the pool (through a licensed pool company) and the surrounding amenities (i.e. gates, fences, signs, locker rooms, etc.), to confirm that the same are in working order and have not deteriorated over the course of the winter months.
- The association should confirm yearly that its insurance policy is up to date and adequately covers all amenities including any pool and pool related facilities. It is always helpful if an association can loop its insurer into the findings of the pool inspection, or even better, have the insurer attend the inspection personally. This could lead to helpful hints or tips from the insurer with respect to potential issues, liabilities, and/or action to take for potential insurance savings.
- Make sure the association has pool rules in place and that the rules are up to date and compliant with the Fair Housing Act (“FHA”). The FHA prohibits discrimination in housing based on familial status. A discrimination claim could be triggered by rules that treat families with children differently than other residents. If you’re not sure whether your pool rules violate the FHA, have your attorney review them!
- Make sure the pool rules include adequate safety provisions, for example:
- No running.
- No glass containers.
- No diving in shallow areas.
- No smoking and/or tobacco products in the pool area.
- Make sure all pool contracts are up to date. This includes pool maintenance and lifeguard or monitoring contracts.
- If lifeguards are employed by the association, the association should confirm, review and verify each lifeguard’s training. The association should also make sure the hired lifeguards are familiar with the association’s pool, its equipment, its rules, and its safety procedures.
- If pool monitors are employed by the association, the association should confirm that the monitors receive proper training including, but not limited to, pool rules, specific authority to enforce pool rules, safety procedures, and when to call for emergency assistance. If the monitors are not certified lifeguards make sure the same is made clear to the members through signage and pool rules.
If you have any questions on the above, or need assistance drafting or reviewing pool rules prior to the summer season, please contact any of our attorneys at [email protected] or at (303) 432-9999.