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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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Tampa Seminar: Hurricane Amnesia – Disaster Planning & The Reality of Insurance Claim Outcomes

Posted in Education, Events, Hurricane/Disaster Issues, Insurance

It has been years since Florida has been impacted by a major windstorm event, which is fortunate for us as property and business owners but does nothing to remind board members and managers of the importance of proper disaster planning before it is needed. The statewide community association law firm of Becker & Poliakoff and… Continue Reading

Insurance Claim Seminar in Ft. Lauderdale on September 18, 2014

Posted in Events, Hurricane/Disaster Issues, Insurance, Uncategorized

The Most Common Community Association Directors & Officers Claims Insurance industry Expert, Joel Meskin, VP of Community Association Insurance & Risk Management at the McGowan Companies will be making a special guest appearance in Florida to discuss the do’s and don’ts of properly insuring and protecting your board of directors from lawsuits and losses. The… Continue Reading

Condo Terminations Criticized

Posted in Operations

Condominium terminations have received much negative press lately. The uprising of condominium owners fighting termination of the condominium and the anguish of owners of former condominium units has not fallen upon deaf ears. Those pleas prompted Governor Scott to write to the Secretary of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation on Thursday, September 4,… Continue Reading

Condo and Co-op Budgeting Basics

Posted in Budgets, Reserves & Financial

It goes without saying that every association must adopt a budget each year reflecting the estimated income and expenditures of the association. The Florida Administrative Code requires the budget adopted by the Board of Directors to contain some basic features. The budget must contain the beginning and ending dates. Adopting a budget for the “2015”… Continue Reading

Condominium, HOA, and Cooperative Association App Launches on iPhone and Android Devices

Posted in Education, Operations

FT. LAUDERDALE, FL, August 28, 2014 – Volunteer boards and property managers responsible for the operation of condominiums, homeowner’s associations and coops will find their jobs a little easier thanks to a new Smartphone app from the Becker & Poliakoff Community Association Law Practice group. The new “Pocket Condo, HOA and Coop Guide” is now… Continue Reading

Community Update 2014, Volume 7 & 8

Posted in Community Update, Discrimination/Fair Housing, Official Records

Here it is – our Special Legislative Issue of Community Update. This year CALL had significant impact on the new laws and published detailed guides to the legislation.  Click HERE if you want to receive the Legislative Guide applicable to your community.  The guide includes video, insight into the laws and recommended actions for your… Continue Reading

Florida Statute Changes Affect Condo Board’s Use Of Emails

Posted in Meetings, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: I own a condominium unit and am confused concerning recent changes to the condominium statute about e-mails. Specifically, I have heard reports that the revisions to the statute now allow board members to conduct association business by e-mail and not just at board meetings. This would seem to exclude unit owners from participating in… Continue Reading

Community Update 2014, Volume 6

Posted in Community Update, Official Records, Rules & Regulatins, Uncategorized

There have been numerous articles in the press regarding forced sales of condominium units. A law adopted in 2007 changed the procedure to terminate a condominium. Do you understand the termination process? As an owner, do you have any say in whether the condominium terminates? What happens to your mortgage? Our feature Article, Termination of… Continue Reading

HOAs Must Provide a Copy of Any Amendment to the Association’s Governing Documents

Posted in Official Records, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: I am a member of a homeowners’ association. We were recently asked to vote on amendments to the association’s declaration. After reviewing a copy of the proposed amendment that they sent with the notice of the meeting, I voted by proxy and did not attend the meeting, but I heard that the amendments were… Continue Reading

Should your condo or HOA have an Automatic External Defibrillator?

Posted in Fiduciary Duty of Board of Directors, Liability, Operations

The American Heart Association encourages the purchase and availability of automatic external defibrillators (AED) and many community associations have already purchased this life safety equipment for on-site use.  These machines have become commonplace in airports, hotels, supermarkets and shopping centers throughout the country. You may wonder if there is any downside to having this machine available in… Continue Reading

Changes to Condominium Property are Highly Scrutinized

Posted in Arbitration & Court Rulings, Maintenance & Repair

The Board of Directors has the responsibility and authority to maintain the common elements of a condominium. On the other hand, Section 718.113(2)(a), Florida Statutes, requires 75% of the entire membership to approve a material alteration or substantial addition to the common elements, unless the declaration provides for an alternative approval method. The determination of… Continue Reading

Condominium Associations Have no Right to “Give Out” Unit Owners’ Private Information

Posted in Official Records, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question:  I am the secretary of our association. I have read all your recent articles about the new condominium laws, but still do not understand what information contained in owners’ files I am permitted to give out. Could you summarize the current rules? E.L. (via e-mail) Answer:  As a starting point, a condominium association has… Continue Reading

Community Update 2014, Volume 5

Posted in Community Update, Construction Issues & Contractual Disputes, Insurance

Our legislative town halls have provided active community leaders with insights into the new laws that impact community association operations. Over 100 people attended the session held in Fort Lauderdale where the panel consisted of no less than six (6) local legislators. CALL partnered with Biscayne Neighborhood Association, Brickell Homeowners Association, and Downtown Neighbors Alliance… Continue Reading

Condo Boards’ Access to Unit Limited by Court Decisions

Posted in Case Law & Court Rulings, Fiduciary Duty of Board of Directors

Two recent cases decided by Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal impose conditions on access to individual units by condominium association boards.  The statute provides the association with the irrevocable right of access.  Section 718.111(5), Florida Statutes says:   RIGHT OF ACCESS TO UNITS.  The association has the irrevocable right of access to each unit… Continue Reading

Condos & HOAs must comply with Fair Credit Reporting Act

Posted in Operations

Does your condominium or homeowners association screen prospective purchasers or tenants? While not every association has the authority to approve transfers, many associations do and typically part of the investigation includes a background check. Background checks obtained from a Consumer Reporting Agency (“CRA”) are considered consumer reports. The use of a consumer report is regulated… Continue Reading

Condo Directors Need Thick Skin

Posted in Arbitration & Court Rulings, Operations

Arbitration Ruling Finds Unit Owner Actions “Repugnant” but Not a Violation of Documents The arbitration case of Majestic Shores Condominium Association, Inc. v. Carillo, describes what is all too often experienced by condominium directors. The association filed the petition for arbitration with the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares and Mobile Homes claiming that abusive and… Continue Reading

Recently Signed House Bill 807 Addresses Abandoned Condominium Units and other Condo & HOA Issues

Posted in Insurance, Legislation, Operations, Reader Q&A

This year was a fairly busy one in Tallahassee, with several Bills of interest passing out of the Legislature. Technically, Bills do not become law until after they are sent to the Governor, who then has the option to either sign the Bill, veto it, or take no action. When the Governor takes no action,… Continue Reading

Condo & HOA Bill HB 807 Covers Records, Video Meetings, Email

Posted in Legislation, Meetings, Official Records, Owner Payment Responsibility, Reader Q&A

Today’s column continues our annual review of new laws affecting community associations, condominiums, cooperatives, and homeowners’ associations. This year was a fairly busy one in Tallahassee, with several Bills of interest passing out of the Legislature. House Bill 807 (HB 807) is this year’s main bill affecting community associations. Last week, we looked at some… Continue Reading

Lifesaving Gear Is Often Purchased Despite Risks

Posted in Liability, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question:  My Association is considering purchasing an artificial external defibrillator (AED) but I don’t think this is a good idea because it will expose the Association to unnecessary liability. The Association has been told that Florida’s Cardiac Arrest Survival Act would provide the Association immunity. Is this true?  L.P. (via e-mail) Answer:  First, case law… Continue Reading

Condo Statute Does Not Place Cap on Budget Increases

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

Question: We own a unit in a condominium association and this year our assessments increased significantly. I was told that the Condominium Act did not allow boards to increase assessments more than ten percent per year without an owner vote. Is this correct?  J.C. (via e-mail) Answer: No. Section 718.112(2)(e)2.a., Florida Statutes, provides that if… Continue Reading

Condo & HOA Board Meetings and Videoconferencing

Posted in Meetings, Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: Can Board meetings of a condominium association be conducted using a videoconferencing service, such as Skype, so that both board members and unit owners cannot only hear, but see the business being conducted? J.A. (via e-mail) Answer: The Florida Not For Profit Corporation Act generally allows directors to participate in board meetings through the… Continue Reading

Do Condo “Resident Vendors” Require Proof of Insurance?

Posted in Insurance, Reader Q&A

Question: Our condominium association uses both residents and non-residents as vendors to provide a variety of services to our association. Non-resident vendors are required to provide proof of insurance but some resident vendors are not required to provide proof of insurance. How should the association handle insurance by resident vendors? K.W. (via e-mail) Answer: As… Continue Reading