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Florida Condo & HOA Legal Blog News & Updates on Condo & HOA Laws & Legislation in the State of Florida

Category Archives: Operations

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There is a Difference Between Requests to Inspect Official Records and Certified Inquiries

Posted in Association Documents, Official Records, Uncategorized

Question: We have a resident asking for clarification on the proper procedure to obtain copies of an invoice for work performed in the community. In a previous column, I thought you stated that requests for official records in a condominium association must be submitted by certified mail. Does this same requirement apply to a request… Continue Reading

Approvals to Alter Condominium Property Must be Made at a Properly Noticed Board Meeting

Posted in Association Documents, Common Areas, Email, Material Alteration, Official Records, Voting

Question: I regularly attend the board meetings of my condominium association. When I cannot attend, I make certain to read the minutes when they are posted. In the association’s quarterly newsletter, the president announced that the association would be changing the configuration of a conference room to allow for storage. Though the board is authorized… Continue Reading

Hurricane Shutters and Florida Condominiums

Posted in Hurricane/Disaster Issues, Insurance, Rules & Regulations

Question: I am preparing to return to my northern home for the summer and intend to deploy the hurricane shutters on my condominium unit. However, the association is advising me that I cannot deploy my hurricane shutters unless there is a storm warning. Is this permissible? (B.M. via e-mail) Answer: Since hurricane season began on… Continue Reading

Homeowners Have the Right to Inspect and Copy Official Records of the Association

Posted in Official Records, Reader Q&A

Question: I recently sent my homeowners’ association a certified letter listing out five disagreements/questions I had about decisions made by the board. The president wrote back by e-mail and said that they would not answer my questions or address my concerns, but I could inspect the records of the association at my convenience. This is… Continue Reading

HOA and Condominium Association Boards Must Keep Documents Current

Posted in Association Documents, Covenant Enforcement/Violations, Official Records

Question: Our condominium documents are more than 30 years old. From what I understand, the association membership must take action at some point to make certain that the documents are not extinguished, but I think we might have missed the deadline. Is that the case?  If so, does that mean that our declaration of condominium… Continue Reading

What are considered “Official Records” in Florida Condominiums and HOAs?

Posted in Official Records, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: I am the secretary of my homeowners’ association. In reading the bylaws, I see that I am responsible for making sure that the association maintains all official records. However, our bylaws do not specify what constitutes an “official record.” We just had our annual elections. We now have ballots, and a large number of… Continue Reading

Online Voting: A Tool for Voter Inclusion and Fraud Deterrence

Posted in Elections, Fraud, Operations, Voting

Over the past few weeks, the Miami Herald and Univision have teamed up to investigate allegations of fraudulent condominium elections, primarily in Miami-Dade County. In fact, Miami-Dade County by far has the highest number of complaints of any county in Florida for voter fraud, according to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, accounting for… Continue Reading

Associations Must Make Financial Statements Available to Members

Posted in Budgets, Reserves & Financial, Reader Q&A

Question: I belong to a voluntary property owners’ association which has raised money for various projects within our community. However, I did not renew my membership this year by paying the annual dues because I was dissatisfied with the association’s prior accounting of its funds. Is there any way to force a voluntary association to… Continue Reading

Florida HOA Act Allows Owners to Speak for at Least 3 Minutes at Annual Meetings

Posted in Meetings, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: I recently attended our annual homeowners’ association members meeting. We were asked to vote on several proposed amendments to the declaration of covenants. The changes were substantial and I had a number of comments I wanted to make at the meeting. However, when I was given an opportunity to speak, I was told that… Continue Reading

HOA Documents Determine Who is Obligated to Replace Landscaping

Posted in Maintenance & Repair, Reader Q&A

Question: I live in a homeowners’ association where the association maintains the landscaping on all of the individual lots. Recently, I had a number of plants, including hedges and palm trees die, and I do not know who is responsible to pay for their replacement. Because the association maintains the landscaping, is the association responsible… Continue Reading

Florida Community Associations are Obligated to Provide Financial Reports to Owners

Posted in Budgets, Reserves & Financial, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: At the recent annual meeting for my condominium association the owners were presented with a question asking whether the association should waive the requirement to have an audit of the association financial records conducted. The same question has been asked for the past few years. I looked and our bylaws specifically require an audit… Continue Reading

Becker & Poliakoff Announces Launch Of Proprietary ‘BPBALLOT’ Voting Software For Community Associations

Posted in Elections, Official Records

Law firm becomes first in Florida offering proprietary online voting software to address long-standing challenges for managed communities FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – March 22, 2016 – The law firm of Becker & Poliakoff today announced the launch of BPBALLOT, a proprietary, secure online voting software for community associations. As the only law firm in Florida… Continue Reading

HOA Reserve Accounts: What Are You Missing?

Posted in Budgets, Reserves & Financial, Common Areas, Fiduciary Duty of Board of Directors, Operations, Uncategorized

Maintenance, repair and upgrade of the common areas of a community can be costly, and reserve accounts can be a great planning tool for large projects. In 2007, Section 720.303(6) of the Florida Statutes was added to the Florida HOA Act establishing procedures and rules related to reserves if a) they were originally established by… Continue Reading

Ballots are Official Records and May be Inspected by Condominium Owners

Posted in Elections, Official Records, Reader Q&A

Question: At our recent annual meeting there was a very contentious vote on whether the association should update the clubhouse. The vote failed. Now certain owners who were in support of the project have requested to inspect the proxies. These documents show how every owner voted. Are other owners allowed to see this information?  It… Continue Reading

Keeping an Eye on HB 1357, Relating to Community Associations

Posted in Assessment Collection, CALL Alert, Legislation, Official Records

One of the bills that is still being considered in Tallahassee this year is HB 1357, Relating to Community Associations. Among other things, the bill requires condominium associations with 500 or more units and homeowners’ associations with 7500 or more parcels to post many of its official records on a website. The revised bill also… Continue Reading

No Regulation of HOAs by DBPR this Legislative Session in Florida

Posted in Covenant Enforcement/Violations, Developer Obligations, Official Records

Yesterday, the Senate Regulated Industries Committee failed to approve SB 1122, Relating to Homeowners’ Associations. The bill would have required all homeowners’ associations to pay $2.00 per parcel for the purpose of authorizing the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to regulate the HOA. The bill would have also required mandatory binding arbitration of certain… Continue Reading

Does A Florida Condominium Board Have To Answer Owner Letters?

Posted in Fiduciary Duty of Board of Directors, Liability, Reader Q&A

Question: I live in a condominium association and serve on the board. Our property manager recently received a letter from an owner with a list of over twenty questions concerning the operations of the association. The letter was sent via certified mail. Are we required to answer these numerous questions?  It will take us hours… Continue Reading

2016 Legal Update & Special Insider Look At Insurance For Community Associations

Posted in Events, Insurance, Legislation

2016 Legal Update Overview of the Major Legislation Adopted in 2015 Impacting Florida’s Community Associations Provider #0000811, Course #9627311, 2 LU credit hours Presented by David Rogel, Esq. and Rosa de la Camara, Esq. In addition to sunshine and tropical storms, we are guaranteed each year in Florida to see changes to the laws governing… Continue Reading

New Bills Impacting Homeowners’ Associations Filed for 2016 Legislative Session

Posted in Assessment Collection, CALL Alert, Covenant Enforcement/Violations, Legislation, Official Records, Rules & Regulations, Suspensions, Fines & Remedies

HB 7031, Relating to the Marketable Record Title Act (MRTA) has been filed by the House Civil Justice Subcommittee.  Specifically, the bill provides that covenants and restrictions of homeowners’ associations will not expire because of MRTA. This will save HOAs thousands of dollars by not having to “preserve” their covenants and restrictions or “revitalize” them… Continue Reading

Do Budget Workshops Fall Under Sunshine Law?

Posted in Budgets, Reserves & Financial, Meetings, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: I live in a homeowners’ association. The board of directors has historically held a budget workshop with only the chief financial officer of the management company and two of the five directors present. The association is governed by a five member board, so that board argues that because a quorum is not present, they… Continue Reading