Header graphic for print
Florida Condo & HOA Legal Blog News & Updates on Condo & HOA Laws & Legislation in the State of Florida

Category Archives: Reader Q&A

Subscribe to Reader Q&A RSS Feed

Florida HOA Residents Have the Right to Inspect Official Records of the Association

Posted in Association Documents, Governing Documents, Official Records, Reader Q&A

Question: I live in a homeowners’ association. I recently received a letter stating that a decorative holiday flag in my front yard is in violation of the association’s rules and regulations. I am confused because several of my neighbors have similar decorations in their gardens. I sent the community association manager an e-mail asking to… Continue Reading

Fining Procedures Confound Condominium & Cooperative Boards in Florida

Posted in Association Documents, Governing Documents, Reader Q&A, Rules & Regulations, Suspensions, Fines & Remedies, Uncategorized

Question: Our association tried to fine an owner who violated our rules, but decided the process was too complicated. Can you provide a step-by-step outline of how fines are issued and collected? (M.G. by e-mail) Answer: Fines can be imposed against condominium and cooperative unit owners, occupants, licensees and invitees. The law for homeowners’ associations… Continue Reading

Condominium Associations Should List Their Attorney as the Registered Agent

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

Question: I am the President of my condominium association.  I just found out that the association was sued by a disgruntled owner.  Unfortunately, I just recently learned that the association has been “defaulted” in the lawsuit because we failed to answer the lawsuit by the deadline.  Apparently the process server served a member of the… Continue Reading

Departing Condominium Board Member Must Relinquish Keys Within Five Days

Posted in Managers (CAMS), Operations, Reader Q&A

Question: Recently, our association’s president resigned and took a job with our management company at another complex. While our office manager was on vacation this former president was in her office for a few hours. If he resigned doesn’t he have to turn in his key to the office. He has no business in there…. Continue Reading

Secondhand Smoke on Condominium Lanai: What are my Rights?

Posted in Common Areas, Reader Q&A, Safety and security

Question: I just read the question you answered in one of your prior columns about a man wanting to smoke cigars in the common area of his condominium complex. You said that “the ill-health effects of secondhand smoke are well established.” I live on the second floor of a two-story condominium building. When someone smokes… Continue Reading

Are Social Event Expenses a Proper Expense for Florida Condominium Associations?

Posted in Association Documents, Budgets, Reserves & Financial, Governing Documents, Reader Q&A

Question: My condominium association holds an annual holiday party at a nearby restaurant. The association pays for everything, including the banquet hall, food and refreshments, by using common funds. Is this a proper common expense? J.A. Answer: Maybe. Your condominium association’s governing documents likely include a definition of “common expenses.” If this definition specifically includes… Continue Reading

Condo Association Must Make Records Available Within Five Working Days of Written Request

Posted in Official Records, Reader Q&A

Question: In a recent article, you stated that the Florida Condominium Act requires associations to make records available within 5 working days of a written request. However, I thought that the Association has 10 working days to provide access to the records. Which is correct? (P.G. by e-mail) Answer: You are referring to my column … Continue Reading

Florida HOA Board Required to Act in Response to Member Petition

Posted in Meetings, Reader Q&A, Voting

Question: I am the president of my homeowners’ association and recently the board voted to proceed with a construction project within the community. Shortly after the vote, the association received a petition signed by a number of owners asking the board to reconsider the issue. Since the board has already discussed and voted on this… Continue Reading

Right to See Association Employee Wages Ambiguous

Posted in Association Documents, Official Records, Reader Q&A

Question: Do I have the right to know the compensation package of employees of my homeowners’ association?  (J.S.by e-mail) Answer: This is a complicated issue and there is not unanimity of opinion as to what the law actually means. The answer to your question may depend on where the information you seek is contained. The… 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

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

Florida HOA Boards Must Be Consistent with Architectural Guidelines

Posted in Association Documents, Reader Q&A

Question: The board of directors of our homeowners’ association is totally arbitrary in their application of the architectural rules in our community. For example, they approve applications for some owners, but when another owner applies for the exact same alteration, they are denied. My question is whether the board must be fair and equitable in… Continue Reading

What is an arbitration decision?

Posted in Arbitration & Court Rulings, Covenant Enforcement/Violations, Reader Q&A

Question: I’m new to the board of my condominium association. I was just copied on a lengthy opinion letter from the association attorney. There are several references to various court decisions. There are also references to arbitration decisions. What is an arbitration decision?  A.Z. (via e-mail) Answer: Since 1992, all condominium “disputes” (as that term… Continue Reading

Can a Condominium Board Take Away Delinquent Owners’ Rights to Common Areas?

Posted in Covenant Enforcement/Violations, Reader Q&A, Suspensions, Fines & Remedies

Question: Our condominium association has a number of owners who are delinquent. We have reviewed various collection options, including liens and foreclosure. I understand that there are other actions the association can take including taking away use rights in the condominium property. How can we take away an owner’s right to use the property?  If… 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