Committed to Excellence

Navigating legal matters can be complicated and overwhelming. For over 40 years, we have provided legal counsel to common interest developments just like yours. We replace the stress and uncertainty of legal situations with the wisdom and understanding that only comes from a deep understanding of the law. Let us help you work through the details of each legal matter to provide you with all pertinent information and available resolutions.

We work side-by-side with community managers and board members to develop a comprehensive understanding of each community's goals and needs. Our teams partner with clients to manage day-to-day issues and resolve potential conflicts before they escalate. We also develop a sustainable vision for each community's governance to provide practical solutions and to craft a sustainable roadmap to success.

By involving legal counsel early in the process, we identify potential legal pitfalls and help reduce conflict and minimize risk.

General Counsel

Although the legal needs of our clients fluctuate in scope and complexity, our dedication to provide the best legal counsel never wavers. Our clients are varied, ranging from small condominiums to large master planned communities and from mixed-use communities to mid-rise and age-qualified communities.

Here are some examples of general counsel services that we provide:

  • Interpreting and revising governing documents
  • Negotiating and drafting contracts
  • Drafting easement and license agreements
  • Providing written opinions and recommendations
  • Attending Board Meetings and Annual Elections
  • Advising and assisting with rule enforcement
  • Advising on new laws

Governing Documents

We review, interpret and draft amendments to governing documents including:

  • CC&Rs
  • By-laws
  • Rules and regulations
  • Architectural and design guidelines

Our efforts provide you with the tools to efficiently govern your community. We help associations ensure that governing documents align with the needs of the community and stay current with changing laws and trends.

Civil Litigation

We spend time in the boardroom to keep community associations out of the courtroom. But if a case is litigated, Whitney Michael provides litigation expertise that comes from decades of combined experience. We pursue and defend actions for a wide range of civil cases, including:

  • Architectural disputes
  • Violations of governing documents
  • Breach of contract
  • Breach of fiduciary duty
  • Personal injury/property damage
  • Election challenges

We also have a record of excellence in overseeing insurance claims, pursuing insurance coverage for our clients and filing necessary appeals.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

We view litigation as a last resort and pride ourselves in finding creative dispute resolutions before costly litigation commences. Oftentimes, we provide confidential, cost-effective and expeditious alternatives to litigation from informal discussion or meetings (IDR) to more structured alternative disputes resolution processes (ADR) such as mediation or arbitration.


To ensure the integrity of the Board and its decisions, we conduct elections in accordance with your community's governing documents and California law. We prepare and review election documents, conduct election meetings, provide legal guidance to inspectors of election and defend election challenges when they occur. We not only help clients with the typical director elections, but also with member votes on regular and special assessments, capital improvements, and amendments to governing documents. Because we represent many master planned communities, we have a unique breadth of experience with delegate voting as well.

Legal Training & Preparation

Training is a critical component of providing comprehensive, proactive legal services that is often overlooked. Our trainings include:

  • Board of director fiduciary duties
  • Efficient board meetings
  • Architectural committee training
  • Legal updates

We regularly provide legal training and ongoing legal updates to our clients to ensure they have the tools and knowledge to meet their fiduciary duties.

We are committed to serving and protecting community associations. The best evidence is in what people say about us.

"I have worked with the team at Whitney | Petchul for many years. They have a strong understanding of the law as well as the governing documents for my associations. They are very responsive and highly accessible with wonderful personal customer service. They are always a phone call or an email away and provide opinions which are easy to understand and not full of legalese."

Rick Z.

"The team at Whitney | Petchul doesn’t just regurgitate Civil Code, they look at each issue with a strategic, solution-focused mindset. With this approach the focus is always on what is best for the client, and how to recover the best solution and bring about favorable results in a timely, cost-effective manner."

Jaime C.

"I have personally worked with Whitney | Petchul, APC for over three years and I admire their dedication and commitment to their clients. They show their commitment by pursuing matters important for the HOA communities that they serve and are above reproach in their ethics and transparency to the laws pertaining the HOA world. I also am always amazed at how accessible their legal counsel team is to the clients they serve with prompt returned phone calls and accurate, timely emails, this is a must in our busy industry!"

Gloria V.

"Over the last 22 years, their team has provided invaluable guidance in areas pertaining to contractual matters, issues with local municipalities, owner enforcement issues, property ownership concerns, Easement & Deed preparation, etc. Their firm is always very diplomatic and handles every situation with tact, while at the same time protecting the Association’s best interest. The experience and knowledge their firm provides has given the Association a sense of peace and confidence that true professionals are representing AVCA."

Aliso Viejo Community Association

"I could not be more fortunate as a General Manager to have a better support system and partnership than I do with the team at Whitney | Petchul. They are a crucial member of my managing team on our large master association and their prompt and detailed advice is very effective and valuable. I truly value the many year of experience they offer as the pinnacle of expertise in our industry."

General Manager, Irvine, CA

Contact Our Team

Please fill in the following form:

Whitney | Petchul
22342-A Avenida Empresa, Suite #100
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688
(949) 766-4700
[email protected]


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