The Timeshare Association (unincorporated)
In or around 1991 TATOC existed as an unincorporated collection of timeshare committee chairpersons. They met at various times during a year to discuss issues they all encountered whilst deliberating over the management issues surrounding the performance of the club they served.
To further the knowledge as to educate themselves regarding “running issues” a timeshare club was formed, and it calls itself TATOC. The purpose was to deliver the promised benefits which flowed from the sale of the timeshare and the club members the consumer had acquired.
For those unfamiliar with the timeshare concept you may not fully appreciate that when you acquire a timeshare, you generally acquire the right to occupy a holiday property, located within the confines of a resort and in a fixed week in a calendar year. As 52 weeks exist in any given year it becomes obvious that there are many owners who have acquired the ‘right to occupy’ the property all be it at different weeks. Thus the property, the rights acquired, and the preservation of the concept needs to be managed.
As the property, the resort, the concept and administration require maintaining and servicing, the developers created an efficient vehicle to manage the concept - ‘a club’ - all owners becoming members of that private club. Membership into the club was mandatory, given free of charge and each had a voice via ‘one member, one vote’. Prior to the sale of the timeshare, the club was created, and a constitution created to ensure the needy rules could be implemented.
The club members were in subjection to the constitution, which allowed for a committee to represent the membership to ensure that the club was governed correctly and for the benefit of the members.
The committee, therefore, represents the entire membership not any single members within it. The committee will develop budgets instruct others to provide costings and for the provision of the necessary service to deliver the concept each timeshare owner bought into.
The costs of the services, ambience, administration, and governance are generally termed as maintenance, management or membership fees. The entire fees required to run the resort are then divided into the number of members proportionally to the number of weeks they own and requests are sent to the timeshare owners to settle the liabilities.
Therefore, you have the first party ‘timeshare developer’ selling to the second party ‘timeshare consumers’ the product which is delivered by the third party ‘the timeshare club’ who contracts out all the required work to the fourth Party the management company.
As timeshare is supported by a collection of convoluted arrangements parties and sub-parties in the product by its very nature is complex and need a certain degree of explanation which cannot be done simply by presenting it in written form.
Therefore, in most cases, the explanation regarding what benefits the product will deliver, are explained verbally by the seller of the timeshare. This practice of delivering verbal representations is a universal practice, the preferred method of every timeshare developer. Accordingly, what was said or implied in the sales event can result in different interpretations by the listener, therefore naturally disputes can arise from different interpretations.
When timeshare is sold and acquired it is the implied or perceived expectations which are delivered by the committee, therefore, they are sometime in the “thick” of the arguments between the seller and the buyers.
So, it stands to reason the impartial committees are in the middle of the much-debated timeshare product. Due to that fact and the corresponding liability which exists in being a committee member in an unincorporated association, this group [on the 10th of December 2001] (17 years ago), created and staged a company and called “The Associations of Timeshare Owners Committees Ltd”, (TATOC).