Monday, October 1, 2012

Are you interested in 'condo law'?

Here is a link to a column written in the Ft Lauderdale Sun-Sentinal. It has dozens of interesting questions and responses from a realty lawyer. Take a look at:

Below are 3 interesting questions, heavily edited for the limited space here.  The complete Q and A are on the above link and don't forget to click on for 'older questions' which are just as interesting:

Q: I attended a board meeting and wanted to speak about a certain issue. The board told me that they were not addressing that issue at the meeting and I did not have a right to speak.  Is that correct?

A: . . . The right to attend such meetings includes the right to speak at such meetings with reference to all designated agenda items. If the issue you wanted to speak about was not a designated agenda item, you do not have the right to speak.

Q: Several unit owners of a condominium want to get certain records from the association. . .we were not provided with any of the documents we requested. Are we entitled to damages?

A: The official records of the association are open to inspection by any association member or the authorized representative of such member at all reasonable times. . The right to inspect the records includes the right to make or obtain copies, at the reasonable expense, if any, of the unit owner. The failure of an association to provide the records within 10 working days after receipt of a written request creates a rebuttable presumption that the association willfully failed to comply with Florida law. A unit owner who is denied access to official records is entitled to the actual damages or minimum damages for the association’s willful failure to comply. Minimum damages are $50 per calendar day for up to 10 days, beginning on the 11th working day after receipt of the written request. . . .

Q: I am a unit owner . . . the board claims I violated the rules and regulations of the association and wants to fine me.

A:. . . A fine may not become a lien against a unit. A fine may be levied on the basis of each day of a continuing violation, with a single notice and opportunity for hearing. However, the fine may not exceed $100 per violation, or $1,000 in the aggregate. . . A fine or suspension may not be imposed unless the association first provides at least 14 days’ written notice and an opportunity for a hearing to the unit owner and, if applicable, its occupant, licensee, or invitee. The hearing must be held before a committee of other unit owners who are neither board members nor persons residing in a board member’s household. If the committee does not agree, the fine or suspension may not be imposed."