Tag Archives: Homeowners’ Association Law

Is Time Running Out on Your Association’s Covenants and Restrictions? How to Preserve your Covenants and Restrictions under Florida Law

The Florida Marketable Record Title to Property Act (“MRTA”) can operate to extinguish interests in real property that were recorded prior to the “root of title” to a property.  In Florida, the root of title must be established by a … Read Full Post

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How to revive your HOA Covenants under Florida Law

If the Covenants and Restrictions for your Homeowners’ Association were recorded in the public records more than 30 years ago, they may no longer be enforceable against some or all of the properties within your community.  Unenforceable covenants create a myriad of problems, including an inability to collect association assessments and an inability to enforce aesthetic covenants that enhance property values within the community. Read Full Post

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Community Association Case Law Update: Selective Enforcement and Violations When Installing Hardwood Floors

Earlier this year the Third District Court of Appeals narrowed two significant unit owner defenses to enforcement actions, selective enforcement and waiver/estoppel when it decided Laguna Tropical, a Condominium Association, Inc. v. Barnave, Case No. 3D16–1531 (Fla. 3d DCA January 25, 2017). For more on the doctrine of Selective Enforcement, please review our October 2014 blog posting. Read Full Post

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What Condominium Owners Should Know About Developer Turnover of the Association: Part I

During the construction and initial sales of units within a condominium association, the developer will manage the association’s operations and governance. This means the developer controls the association’s board of directors. Once the development is constructed and a certain percentage of the units are sold, then turnover of control of the association to the unit owners must occur. What follows is an overview of what every condominium owner should know about developer turnover of the association. Read Full Post

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Can a Condominium Association Face a Second Foreclosure Suit?

The Florida Supreme Court’s recent decision in Bartram v. U.S. National Bank Association is instructive for condominium associations and community managers dealing with a unit in foreclosure, including those trying to determine whether or not to appear and defend a foreclosure by the lender, even though it does not deal directly with a condominium or the Florida Condominium Act. Read Full Post

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Requirements to Challenging an Association Election Through Arbitration

Hardly anything generates more buzz and quarrel within community associations than the annual board of director elections. During the annual meeting and election season, numerous legal inquiries are made regarding the law on the election process, election disputes and challenging election results. Challenging an election requires meticulous and timely action. This blog post discusses the requirements to challenging a community association election through the mandated arbitration process. Read Full Post

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New Resident Screening and Avoiding Disparate Impact Claims

Most well-run community associations incorporate a new tenant application and approval process, and some even utilize such a program for new owners. A typical new resident screening program includes criminal background checks, credit checks, employment verification, and prior rental history. A community association is likely to deny any prospective new resident whose background check produces questionable items. But are associations cognizant of the liability concerns pursuant to recent changes in federal law regarding disparate impact claims for administering a flawed screening process? This blog post will discuss the recent changes to federal law involving new resident screening and how community associations can avoid disparate impact claims. Read Full Post

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Condominium Elections Are Approaching – Is Your Association Following the Rules?

The end of the calendar year means that most condominium associations are gearing up for their annual meeting and election of new board members. For many condominiums, this is a routine event, but for others, this may foster heated and contentious lobbying and under-handed tactics resulting in administrative challenges to the election process, and maybe even litigation. The current board and property manager for a condominium association should have a detailed understanding of the condominium election process. The Department of Business and Professional Regulation has published a State of Florida Condominium Election Brochure covering most of the procedural aspects of condominium elections. This blog will summarize important deadlines and considerations for these elections. Read Full Post

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Appropriate Forum for Condo Association and HOA Disputes in Florida: Arbitration, Mediation or State Court?

Determining the correct forum for any given dispute involving a Florida condo association or HOA can be confusing. Often times the board members, licensed managers and unit owners are unsure of where a dispute will be resolved if a party initiates formal legal action. Florida’s Condominium Act and HOA Act govern the procedures for community association disputes, and both Acts include arbitration, mediation and state court for resolving various issues. This blog post will provide an overview of the appropriate forum for both condo associations and HOAs to resolve certain disputes in Florida. Read Full Post

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Why Community Associations Cannot Afford to Ignore Lender Foreclosure Actions: Part III

By Hans C. Wahl, Esq.

This blog post is part III in a series of posts discussing why community associations cannot afford to ignore lender foreclosure actions. The underlying theme of this series is that associations have a financial interest and lien rights in their properties and by ignoring lender foreclosure actions, associations are ignoring their own financial interests and main sources of revenue. Part I explained that associations have the statutory power to expedite the foreclosure process when lenders are delaying and also illustrated that by implementing a consistent policy for appearing in lender foreclosure actions and expediting the legal proceedings, associations can save tens of thousands of dollars over the years. Part II addressed the unclaimed revenue in the form of foreclosure sale proceeds that associations fail to capitalize on due to not appearing in lender foreclosure actions. This blog post will discuss the advantage associations have in determining, during the foreclosure action, whether the lender is entitled to safe harbor protection or whether the foreclosing entity owes the full amount of unpaid assessments and other charges to the association. Read Full Post

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