Albert Moore, Attorney at Law

What Are The Common Issues In HOA And Condo Associations?

The most common issues involve delinquent assessments, modifications to the residences, parking issues, removal of directors, suspension of use rights and leasing of the residences.

What Payments Do The Members Have To Make In HOA And Condominium Boards?

The owners pay a proportionate share of the common areas which are reflected in the assessments that are imposed by the board. Each member must pay these whether they use those common elements or not. There are certain instances that involve limited common elements for which use is restricted to only certain owners and those certain owners pay additional amounts for the exclusive use of those areas.

Can HOA And Condo Boards Impose Restrictions On It’s Members?

To an extent and it depends on many factors such as what, if any, restrictions on such use are covered in the governing documents. For instance, there may be a prohibition against having a trampoline or pool in your backyard, and unless there is some unique instance such as a Fair Housing Act issue, the association can prohibit having such items in your yard and thereby effectively restricting your use of your yard.

Can I Rent Out Or Lease My Home Or Condominium?

It depends entirely on the documents of the association. An owner or prospective owner that is considering renting or leasing the property should have an experienced attorney review the documents to see if it is permitted and if so under what terms.

Can The Governing Documents Of An HOA or A Condo Board Ever Be Modified?

The governing documents and the Florida Statutes authorize amendments or additions to the governing documents. Sometimes these changes or additions can be handled with merely a majority vote of the board of directors. On other matters, it takes a certain percentage of the owners, or the voting interests, to legally make such changes. Many times disputes arise because the board will make an amendment and owners will take the position that the change required member approval. Sometimes these matters cannot be solved without a judge making the determination after a lawsuit has been filed.

Can The Members Ever Override A Decision Taken By The Board Of Directors?

If the board of directors is authorized by the Florida Statutes and/or the governing documents, the members cannot override or veto such a vote. Owners can, however, elect new board members at the appropriate meeting and have the new board change the decision of the old board. Of course, this is assuming that a member vote was not required by the Florida Statutes or the governing documents in the first place.

What Recourse Does Someone Have If They Feel That A Vote Has Been Improperly Conducted?

If the owner feels that the vote was improperly made, the owner should consult an attorney to get an opinion. If the attorney agrees, the attorney, depending on the issue, can demand mediation, file a petition for arbitration or sue the board for the improper decision. If the vote was handled properly, the owners can elect a new board and try and persuade the new board that the decision should be made differently.

Is It Mandatory For A HOA Or A Condominium Board To Be Incorporated In Florida?

In Florida, according to the Florida Statutes, an HOA must be incorporated. A Condominium Association must be incorporated unless it was in existence prior to 1977. An incorporated entity shields the individuals from personal liability as well as providing structure for the operation of the association so in almost all cases it is not only required but preferable.

For more information on Common Issues With HOA & Condo Boards, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (772) 242-3600 today.

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