Recent Changes Regarding Condominiums and Homeowners Association Laws in Florida

 Have an issue?  The Law Office of Ryan S. Shipp, PLLC is here to help. Outlined below, are the recent changes:

Condominiums and Home Owners Association in FloridaCONDOMINIUMS – RESIDENTIAL (Chapter 718)

Abandoned Units – 718.111 – Authorizes condominium associations to inspect and repair abandoned condominium units. An abandoned unit is defined as one that is subject to a foreclosure action and no one has occupied the unit for at least four (4) weeks, or the unit is not subject to foreclosure but has been unoccupied for two (2) months and the owner cannot be located after reasonable search. This amendment also allows the condominium association to recover costs associated with maintaining an abandoned unit and secure them with a lien on the unit.

Board Meetings – 718.112 – Provides that a board or committee member may participate in a meeting via real time video conferencing, internet enabled video conferencing, or similar electronic or video communication and such participation counts towards the quorum and allows for voting as if physically present. Expressly provides that board members may not vote by email.

Collections (Condominium Owned Units) – 718.116 – Defines the term “previous owner” to exclude a condominium association that owns a unit which allows it to recover past due assessments accrued prior to its ownership from a new owner. This aligns the condominium act with the homeowners association act that was amended last year.

Collections (Liens) – 718.116(5)(D) – Creates a form for a release or satisfaction of an assessment lien. This allows a community association manager to prepare the form without being subject to an allegation of the unlicensed practice of law.

Collections (Demand Letters) – 718.116(6)(b) – Creates a form letter to be used in informing an owner that the association has filed a claim of lien against the unit owner’s unit and that the lien will be foreclosed in thirty (30) days if not paid in full. As with the change to 718.116(5)(D) above, this allows a manager and management firm to prepare this letter without being subject to an allegation of the unlicensed practice of law.

Distressed Condominiums (Sunset Date) – 718.707 – The sunset provision for the bulk assignee bulk buyer legislation has been extended from July 1, 2015 to July 1, 2016.

Insurance – 718.111(11) – Further clarifies that the association is only responsible to repair damaged items if the damage was caused by an insurable event.

Official Records – 718.111(13) – Provides that an owner may consent in writing to the disclosure of certain contact information beyond name, address, and telephone number. Requires an outgoing condominium association board or committee member to relinquish all official records and property of the association within a specified time period and provides that there may be a civil financial penalty for failing to relinquish such records or property.

Termination – 718.117 – If a plan of termination for a condominium association fails to receive the necessary voting approval, the plan cannot be reintroduced for at least six (6) months.

HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATIONS (Chapter 720)

Amendments – 720.306 – Removes the requirement that a copy of an amendment to an HOA declaration be sent to all owners within thirty (30) days of it being recorded, and instead allows for a notice of such
amendment to be sent within that same time period.

Board Meetings – 720.303 – Requires a board meeting to be held in a location accessible to a person who is physically handicapped upon the request of that person.

Board Meetings – 720.306 – Requires that a membership meeting be held at a location accessible to a person who is physically handicapped upon the request of that person.

Collections – 720.3085 – Creates a form for a release or satisfaction of an assessment lien. This allows a community association manager to prepare the form without being subject to an allegation of the unlicensed practice of law.

Emergency Powers – 720.316 – Incorporates the emergency powers provisions of the condominium act into the homeowners association act.

Official Records – 720.303 – It also provides that an owner may consent in writing to the disclosure of certain contact information beyond name, address, and phone number.

 The full text of the changes can be found at: www.flsenate.gov; www.myfloridahouse.com; and www.leg.state.fl.us.

Above summaries are credited to:- http://campbellpropertymanagement.com

Have you been served with Foreclosure papers? Call us today @ (561) 699-0399 for a free 20-minute consultation.
The Law Office of Ryan S. Shipp, PLLC is proud to announce the expansion of our office and new street signage in an effort to better serve our clients.
Need to Evict a Tenant? Checkout our Landlord Eviction Fee Schedule http://shipplawoffice.com/blog/?p=504
Is your Tenant not paying rent? #shipplaw is your one stop shop for all of your Landlord needs. (561) 699-0399. shipplawoffice.com
#Shipplaw handles Florida landlord-tenant disputes, unlawful detainers, ejectments, replevins, collections matters, foreclosure defense, & contractual disputes

328.17 Nonjudicial sale of vessels in Florida

Is your Marina suffering from unpaid costs, storage charges or dockage fees?  Is your Marina holding a vessel for failure to pay removal costs?  Not only do these vessels add extra clutter to your Marina and use up much needed space, but each month the Marina is continuing to lose money.  If you are sick and tired of having to deal with these issues month after month, the Law Office of Ryan S. Shipp, PLLC, will help you recover.

 

328.17 Nonjudicial sale of vessels.

(1) It is the intent of the Legislature that any nonjudicial sale of any vessel held for unpaid costs, storage charges, or dockage fees, or any vessel held for failure to pay removal costs pursuant to s. 327.53(7), be disposed of pursuant to the provisions of this section.
(2) The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles shall provide certification forms for the nonjudicial sale of vessels as authorized by this section.
(3) For purposes of this section, “owner” shall mean the person holding title to the vessel, or any person the marina reasonably believes to be authorized to act for the vessel.
(4) A marina, as defined in s. 327.02(20), shall have:

(a) A possessory lien upon any vessel for storage fees, dockage fees, repairs, improvements, or other work-related storage charges, and for expenses necessary for preservation of the vessel or expenses reasonably incurred in the sale or other disposition of the vessel. The possessory lien shall attach as of the date the vessel is brought to the marina or as of the date the vessel first occupies rental space at the marina facility.
(b) A possessory lien upon any vessel in a wrecked, junked, or substantially dismantled condition, which has been left abandoned at a marina, for expenses reasonably incurred in the removal and disposal of the vessel. The possessory lien shall attach as of the date the vessel arrives at the marina or as of the date the vessel first occupies rental space at the marina facility. If the funds recovered from the sale of the vessel, or from the scrap or salvage value of the vessel, are insufficient to cover the expenses reasonably incurred by the marina in removing and disposing of the vessel, all costs in excess of recovery shall be recoverable against the owner of the vessel. For a vessel damaged as a result of a named storm, the provisions of this paragraph shall be suspended for 60 days following the date the vessel is damaged in the named storm. The operation of the provisions specified in this paragraph run concurrently with, and do not extend, the 60-day notice periods provided in subsections (5) and (7).
(5) A marina’s possessory lien may be satisfied as follows:

(a)1. The marina shall provide written notice to the vessel’s owner, delivered in person or by certified mail to the owner’s last known address. The notice shall also be conspicuously posted at the marina and on the vessel.
2. In addition to notice provided to the vessel owner under subparagraph 1., the marina shall provide written notice to each person or entity that:

a. Holds a security interest on the vessel as shown in the records of the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles with respect to state-titled vessels.
b. Holds a preferred ship mortgage or has filed a claim of lien with the United States Coast Guard Vessel Documentation Center.
c. Holds a security interest against the vessel under the Uniform Commercial Code.
d. Has perfected a lien against the subject vessel by filing a judgment lien certificate pursuant to ss. 55.20155.209.
3. When a vessel displays a foreign country identification or displays registration numbers from a state other than Florida, the marina shall conduct a reasonable lien search of the vessel registration records in the jurisdiction of registry to determine if there is a lienholder who is entitled to notice pursuant to subparagraph 2. Failure to discover a foreign national or non-Florida United States lienholder after a good faith effort to conduct such a lien search shall not prevent the sale or removal of a vessel from the marina to satisfy the marina’s possessory lien or a purchaser, in good faith, from taking title of the vessel, pursuant to subsections (7) and (11).
4. The requirements of subparagraph 2. shall be satisfied if the marina:

a. Obtains ownership documentation for the vessel and trailer, if applicable, from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles or other agency with which the vessel is registered;
b. Obtains an abstract from the United States Coast Guard for a vessel that is documented as defined in 46 U.S.C. s. 30101;
c. Performs a current Uniform Commercial Code lien search;
d. Performs a current Florida judgment lien certificate search; and
e. Complies with subparagraph 3. with regard to vessels registered in a foreign country or in a state other than Florida.
5. The written notice to the vessel owner and lienholders required by this paragraph shall be made at least 60 days prior to any sale of the vessel under this section.
(b) The notice shall include:

1. An itemized statement of the marina’s claim, showing the sum due at the time of the notice and the date upon which the sum became due.
2. A description of the vessel.
3. A demand for payment.
4. A conspicuous statement that, unless the claim is paid within the time stated in the notice, the vessel will be advertised for sale or other disposition and will be sold or otherwise disposed of at a specified time and place.
5. The name, street address, and telephone number of the marina that the owner or lienholder may contact to respond to the notice.
(6) Any notice given pursuant to this section shall be presumed delivered when it is deposited with the United States Postal Service, certified, and properly addressed with postage prepaid.
(7) If the fees, costs, and late payment interest that give rise to such a lien are due and unpaid 60 days after the vessel owner and lienholder are given written notice, the marina may sell the vessel, including its machinery, rigging, and accessories as provided for in subsection (8); or the marina may, at its option, remove the vessel from the marina or from the waters of the state at the owner’s expense pursuant to paragraph (4)(b).
(8) The marina shall first publish an advertisement of the sale or other disposition once a week for 2 consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the area in which the marina is located. Inasmuch as any sale may involve more than one vessel, a single advertisement may be used to dispose of more than one vessel at any one sale.

(a) The advertisement shall include:

1. A brief and general description of the vessel.
2. The address of the marina facility or the address where the marina is located and the name of the owner of the vessel.
3. The time, place, and manner of the sale or other disposition. The sale or other disposition shall take place no sooner than 15 days after the first publication.
(b) If there is no newspaper of general circulation in the area in which the marina is located, the advertisement shall be posted at least 10 days before the date of the sale or other disposition in no fewer than three conspicuous places in the neighborhood in which the marina is located.
(9) Any sale or other disposition of the vessel shall conform to the terms of the notification as provided for in this section and shall be conducted in a commercially reasonable manner, as that term is used in s. 679.610.
(10) Before any sale or other disposition of the vessel pursuant to this section, the owner or the lienholder may pay the amount necessary to satisfy the lien and the reasonable expenses and late payment interest incurred under this section and thereby redeem and take possession of the vessel. Upon receipt of such payment, the marina shall return the property to the owner or lienholder making such payment and thereafter shall have no liability to any person with respect to such vessel.
(11) Unless otherwise provided by law, a purchaser in good faith of a vessel sold to satisfy a lien provided for in this section takes the property free of any claims other than a prior lien perfected under state or federal law.
(12) In the event of a sale under this section, the marina may satisfy its lien from the proceeds of the sale, provided the marina’s lien has priority over all other liens on the vessel. The lien rights of secured lienholders automatically also attach to the remaining proceeds of the sale. The balance, if any, shall be held by the marina for delivery on demand to the owner. A notice of any balance shall be delivered by the marina to the owner in person or by certified mail to the last known address of the owner. If the owner does not claim the balance of the proceeds within 1 year after the date of sale, the proceeds shall be deemed abandoned, and the marina shall have no further obligation with regard to the payment of the balance. In the event that the marina’s lien does not have priority over all other liens, the sale proceeds shall be held for the benefit of the holders of those liens having priority. A notice of the amount of the sale proceeds shall be delivered by the marina to the owner or secured lienholder in person or by certified mail to the owner’s or the secured lienholder’s last known address. If the owner or the secured lienholder does not claim the sale proceeds within 1 year after the date of sale, the proceeds shall be deemed abandoned, and the owner or the secured lienholder shall have no further obligation with regard to the payment of the proceeds.
(13) In making application for transfer of title of a vessel sold pursuant to this section, the new owner shall establish proof of ownership by submitting with the application, which includes the applicable fees and the original bill of sale executed by the marina, a copy of each registered or certified letter sent by the marina to the previous owner and lienholder and a certified copy of the public notice of intent to sell published in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the marina is located. At the time the purchase price is paid, the marina shall provide the documentation required by this subsection to the purchaser.

 

Residential Landlord/Tenant Law in Florida (Advance Rent or Security Deposits)

Advanced RentHave you ever wondered about your Advance Rent or Security Deposits in Residential Landlord-Tenant Leases in Florida? The Law Office of Ryan S. Shipp, PLLC  are Eviction Lawyers and are here to serve and assist in all of your Landlord-Tenant needs. In Florida, Chapter 83 governs Landlords and Tenants.

83.49 Deposit money or advance rent; duty of landlord and tenant.—

(1) Whenever money is deposited or advanced by a tenant on a rental agreement as security for performance of the rental agreement or as advance rent for other than the next immediate rental period, the landlord or the landlord’s agent shall either:

(a) Hold the total amount of such money in a separate non-interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution for the benefit of the tenant or tenants. The landlord shall not commingle such moneys with any other funds of the landlord or hypothecate, pledge, or in any other way make use of such moneys until such moneys are actually due the landlord;

(b) Hold the total amount of such money in a separate interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution for the benefit of the tenant or tenants, in which case the tenant shall receive and collect interest in an amount of at least 75 percent of the annualized average interest rate payable on such account or interest at the rate of 5 percent per year, simple interest, whichever the landlord elects. The landlord shall not commingle such moneys with any other funds of the landlord or hypothecate, pledge, or in any other way make use of such moneys until such moneys are actually due the landlord; or

(c) Post a surety bond, executed by the landlord as principal and a surety company authorized and licensed to do business in the state as surety, with the clerk of the circuit court in the county in which the dwelling unit is located in the total amount of the security deposits and advance rent he or she holds on behalf of the tenants or $50,000, whichever is less. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful compliance of the landlord with the provisions of this section and shall run to the Governor for the benefit of any tenant injured by the landlord’s violation of the provisions of this section. In addition to posting the surety bond, the landlord shall pay to the tenant interest at the rate of 5 percent per year, simple interest. A landlord, or the landlord’s agent, engaged in the renting of dwelling units in five or more counties, who holds deposit moneys or advance rent and who is otherwise subject to the provisions of this section, may, in lieu of posting a surety bond in each county, elect to post a surety bond in the form and manner provided in this paragraph with the office of the Secretary of State. The bond shall be in the total amount of the security deposit or advance rent held on behalf of tenants or in the amount of $250,000, whichever is less. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful compliance of the landlord with the provisions of this section and shall run to the Governor for the benefit of any tenant injured by the landlord’s violation of this section. In addition to posting a surety bond, the landlord shall pay to the tenant interest on the security deposit or advance rent held on behalf of that tenant at the rate of 5 percent per year simple interest.

(2) The landlord shall, in the lease agreement or within 30 days after receipt of advance rent or a security deposit, give written notice to the tenant which includes disclosure of the advance rent or security deposit. Subsequent to providing such written notice, if the landlord changes the manner or location in which he or she is holding the advance rent or security deposit, he or she must notify the tenant within 30 days after the change as provided in paragraphs (a)-(d). The landlord is not required to give new or additional notice solely because the depository has merged with another financial institution, changed its name, or transferred ownership to a different financial institution. This subsection does not apply to any landlord who rents fewer than five individual dwelling units. Failure to give this notice is not a defense to the payment of rent when due. The written notice must:

(a) Be given in person or by mail to the tenant.

(b) State the name and address of the depository where the advance rent or security deposit is being held or state that the landlord has posted a surety bond as provided by law.

(c) State whether the tenant is entitled to interest on the deposit.

(d) Contain the following disclosure:

YOUR LEASE REQUIRES PAYMENT OF CERTAIN DEPOSITS. THE LANDLORD MAY TRANSFER ADVANCE RENTS TO THE LANDLORD’S ACCOUNT AS THEY ARE DUE AND WITHOUT NOTICE. WHEN YOU MOVE OUT, YOU MUST GIVE THE LANDLORD YOUR NEW ADDRESS SO THAT THE LANDLORD CAN SEND YOU NOTICES REGARDING YOUR DEPOSIT. THE LANDLORD MUST MAIL YOU NOTICE, WITHIN 30 DAYS AFTER YOU MOVE OUT, OF THE LANDLORD’S INTENT TO IMPOSE A CLAIM AGAINST THE DEPOSIT. IF YOU DO NOT REPLY TO THE LANDLORD STATING YOUR OBJECTION TO THE CLAIM WITHIN 15 DAYS AFTER RECEIPT OF THE LANDLORD’S NOTICE, THE LANDLORD WILL COLLECT THE CLAIM AND MUST MAIL YOU THE REMAINING DEPOSIT, IF ANY.

IF THE LANDLORD FAILS TO TIMELY MAIL YOU NOTICE, THE LANDLORD MUST RETURN THE DEPOSIT BUT MAY LATER FILE A LAWSUIT AGAINST YOU FOR DAMAGES. IF YOU FAIL TO TIMELY OBJECT TO A CLAIM, THE LANDLORD MAY COLLECT FROM THE DEPOSIT, BUT YOU MAY LATER FILE A LAWSUIT CLAIMING A REFUND.

YOU SHOULD ATTEMPT TO INFORMALLY RESOLVE ANY DISPUTE BEFORE FILING A LAWSUIT. GENERALLY, THE PARTY IN WHOSE FAVOR A JUDGMENT IS RENDERED WILL BE AWARDED COSTS AND ATTORNEY FEES PAYABLE BY THE LOSING PARTY.

THIS DISCLOSURE IS BASIC. PLEASE REFER TO PART II OF CHAPTER 83, FLORIDA STATUTES, TO DETERMINE YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS.

(3) The landlord or the landlord’s agent may disburse advance rents from the deposit account to the landlord’s benefit when the advance rental period commences and without notice to the tenant. For all other deposits:

(a) Upon the vacating of the premises for termination of the lease, if the landlord does not intend to impose a claim on the security deposit, the landlord shall have 15 days to return the security deposit together with interest if otherwise required, or the landlord shall have 30 days to give the tenant written notice by certified mail to the tenant’s last known mailing address of his or her intention to impose a claim on the deposit and the reason for imposing the claim. The notice shall contain a statement in substantially the following form:

This is a notice of my intention to impose a claim for damages in the amount of   upon your security deposit, due to  . It is sent to you as required by s. 83.49(3), Florida Statutes. You are hereby notified that you must object in writing to this deduction from your security deposit within 15 days from the time you receive this notice or I will be authorized to deduct my claim from your security deposit. Your objection must be sent to   (landlord’s address)  .

If the landlord fails to give the required notice within the 30-day period, he or she forfeits the right to impose a claim upon the security deposit and may not seek a setoff against the deposit but may file an action for damages after return of the deposit.

(b) Unless the tenant objects to the imposition of the landlord’s claim or the amount thereof within 15 days after receipt of the landlord’s notice of intention to impose a claim, the landlord may then deduct the amount of his or her claim and shall remit the balance of the deposit to the tenant within 30 days after the date of the notice of intention to impose a claim for damages. The failure of the tenant to make a timely objection does not waive any rights of the tenant to seek damages in a separate action.

(c) If either party institutes an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to adjudicate the party’s right to the security deposit, the prevailing party is entitled to receive his or her court costs plus a reasonable fee for his or her attorney. The court shall advance the cause on the calendar.

(d) Compliance with this section by an individual or business entity authorized to conduct business in this state, including Florida-licensed real estate brokers and sales associates, constitutes compliance with all other relevant Florida Statutes pertaining to security deposits held pursuant to a rental agreement or other landlord-tenant relationship. Enforcement personnel shall look solely to this section to determine compliance. This section prevails over any conflicting provisions in chapter 475 and in other sections of the Florida Statutes, and shall operate to permit licensed real estate brokers to disburse security deposits and deposit money without having to comply with the notice and settlement procedures contained in s. 475.25(1)(d).

(4) The provisions of this section do not apply to transient rentals by hotels or motels as defined in chapter 509; nor do they apply in those instances in which the amount of rent or deposit, or both, is regulated by law or by rules or regulations of a public body, including public housing authorities and federally administered or regulated housing programs including s. 202, s. 221(d)(3) and (4), s. 236, or s. 8 of the National Housing Act, as amended, other than for rent stabilization. With the exception of subsections (3), (5), and (6), this section is not applicable to housing authorities or public housing agencies created pursuant to chapter 421 or other statutes.

(5) Except when otherwise provided by the terms of a written lease, any tenant who vacates or abandons the premises prior to the expiration of the term specified in the written lease, or any tenant who vacates or abandons premises which are the subject of a tenancy from week to week, month to month, quarter to quarter, or year to year, shall give at least 7 days’ written notice by certified mail or personal delivery to the landlord prior to vacating or abandoning the premises which notice shall include the address where the tenant may be reached. Failure to give such notice shall relieve the landlord of the notice requirement of paragraph (3)(a) but shall not waive any right the tenant may have to the security deposit or any part of it.

(6) For the purposes of this part, a renewal of an existing rental agreement shall be considered a new rental agreement, and any security deposit carried forward shall be considered a new security deposit.

(7) Upon the sale or transfer of title of the rental property from one owner to another, or upon a change in the designated rental agent, any and all security deposits or advance rents being held for the benefit of the tenants shall be transferred to the new owner or agent, together with any earned interest and with an accurate accounting showing the amounts to be credited to each tenant account. Upon the transfer of such funds and records to the new owner or agent, and upon transmittal of a written receipt therefor, the transferor is free from the obligation imposed in subsection (1) to hold such moneys on behalf of the tenant. There is a rebuttable presumption that any new owner or agent received the security deposit from the previous owner or agent; however, this presumption is limited to 1 month’s rent. This subsection does not excuse the landlord or agent for a violation of other provisions of this section while in possession of such deposits.

(8) Any person licensed under the provisions of s. 509.241, unless excluded by the provisions of this part, who fails to comply with the provisions of this part shall be subject to a fine or to the suspension or revocation of his or her license by the Division of Hotels and Restaurants of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation in the manner provided in s. 509.261.

(9) In those cases in which interest is required to be paid to the tenant, the landlord shall pay directly to the tenant, or credit against the current month’s rent, the interest due to the tenant at least once annually. However, no interest shall be due a tenant who wrongfully terminates his or her tenancy prior to the end of the rental term.

 
Facebook IconTwitter Icon