Arizona law protects individual homeowners’ private property rights to solar access by dissolving any local covenant, restriction, or condition attached to a property deed that restricts the use of solar energy.
This law sustained a legal challenge in 2000. A Maricopa County Superior Court judge ruled in favor of homeowners in a lawsuit filed by their homeowners association seeking to force the homeowners to remove rooftop solar panels. The judge found that the association's "guidelines combined with [its] conduct 'effectively prohibited' the defendants from placing solar heating devices on their residence, contrary to the provisions of A.R.S.-33-439 (A)."
Senate Bill 1254, enacted in July 2007, stipulates that a homeowners association may not prohibit the installation or use of solar-energy devices (panels and associated devices). An association may, however, adopt reasonable rules regarding the placement of a solar device if those rules do not prevent the installation of the device, impair the functioning of the device, restrict its use, or adversely affect the cost or efficiency of the device. The bill also grants reasonable attorney fees to any party who substantially prevails in litigation against an association's board of directors.