GENERAL PROVISIONS (ss.
Short title.--This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Condominium
Purposes.--The purpose of this chapter is:
(1) To give statutory recognition to the condominium form of
ownership of real property.
(2) To establish procedures for the creation, sale, and operation
Every condominium created and existing in this state shall be subject
to the provisions of this chapter.
Definitions.--As used in this chapter, the term:
(1) "Assessment" means a share of the funds which are required
for the payment of common expenses, which from time to time is assessed
against the unit owner.
(2) "Association" means, in addition to any entity responsible
for the operation of common elements owned in undivided shares by unit
owners, any entity which operates or maintains other real property in which
unit owners have use rights, where membership in the entity is composed
exclusively of unit owners or their elected or appointed representatives
and is a required condition of unit ownership.
(3) "Association property" means that property, real and personal,
which is owned or leased by, or is dedicated by a recorded plat to, the
association for the use and benefit of its members.
(4) "Board of administration" or "board" means the board of directors
or other representative body which is responsible for administration of
(5) "Buyer" means a person who purchases a condominium unit.
The term "purchaser" may be used interchangeably with the term "buyer."
(6) "Bylaws" means the bylaws of the association as they are
amended from time to time.
(7) "Committee" means a group of board members, unit owners,
or board members and unit owners appointed by the board or a member of
the board to make recommendations to the board regarding the proposed annual
budget or to take action on behalf of the board.
(8) "Common elements" means the portions of the condominium property
not included in the units.
(9) "Common expenses" means all expenses properly incurred by
the association in the performance of its duties, including expenses specified
in s. 718.115.
(10) "Common surplus" means the amount of all receipts or revenues,
including assessments, rents, or profits, collected by a condominium association
which exceeds common expenses.
(11) "Condominium" means that form of ownership of real property
created pursuant to this chapter, which is comprised entirely of units
that may be owned by one or more persons, and in which there is, appurtenant
to each unit, an undivided share in common elements.
(12) "Condominium parcel" means a unit, together with the undivided
share in the common elements appurtenant to the unit.
(13) "Condominium property" means the lands, leaseholds, and
personal property that are subjected to condominium ownership, whether
or not contiguous, and all improvements thereon and all easements and rights
appurtenant thereto intended for use in connection with the condominium.
(14) "Conspicuous type" means bold type in capital letters no
smaller than the largest type, exclusive of headings, on the page on which
it appears and, in all cases, at least 10-point type. Where conspicuous
is required, it must be separated on all sides from other type and print.
Conspicuous type may be used in a contract for purchase and sale of a unit,
a lease of a unit for more than 5 years, or a prospectus or offering circular
only where required by law.
(15) "Declaration" or "declaration of condominium" means the
instrument or instruments by which a condominium is created, as they are
from time to time amended.
(16) "Developer" means a person who creates a condominium or
offers condominium parcels for sale or lease in the ordinary course of
business, but does not include an owner or lessee of a condominium or cooperative
unit who has acquired the unit for his or her own occupancy, nor does it
include a cooperative association which creates a condominium by conversion
of an existing residential cooperative after control of the association
has been transferred to the unit owners if, following the conversion, the
unit owners will be the same persons who were unit owners of the cooperative
and no units are offered for sale or lease to the public as part of the
plan of conversion.
(17) "Division" means the Division of Florida Land Sales, Condominiums,
and Mobile Homes of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
(18) "Land" means the surface of a legally described parcel of
real property and includes, unless otherwise specified in the declaration
and whether separate from or including such surface, airspace lying above
and subterranean space lying below such surface. However, if so defined
in the declaration, the term "land" may mean all or any portion of the
airspace or subterranean space between two legally identifiable elevations
and may exclude the surface of a parcel of real property and may mean any
combination of the foregoing, whether or not contiguous.
(19) "Limited common elements" means those common elements which
are reserved for the use of a certain unit or units to the exclusion of
all other units, as specified in the declaration.
(20) "Multicondominium" means a real estate development containing
two or more condominiums, all of which are operated by the same association.
(21) "Operation" or "operation of the condominium" includes the
administration and management of the condominium property.
(22) "Rental agreement" means any written agreement, or oral
agreement if for less duration than 1 year, providing for use and occupancy
(23) "Residential condominium" means a condominium consisting
of two or more units, any of which are intended for use as a private temporary
or permanent residence, except that a condominium is not a residential
condominium if the use for which the units are intended is primarily commercial
or industrial and not more than three units are intended to be used for
private residence, and are intended to be used as housing for maintenance,
managerial, janitorial, or other operational staff of the condominium.
With respect to a condominium that is not a timeshare condominium, a residential
unit includes a unit intended as a private temporary or permanent residence
as well as a unit not intended for commercial or industrial use. With respect
to a timeshare condominium, the timeshare instrument as defined in s. 721.05(33)
shall govern the intended use of each unit in the condominium. If a condominium
is a residential condominium but contains units intended to be used for
commercial or industrial purposes, then, with respect to those units which
are not intended for or used as private residences, the condominium is
not a residential condominium. A condominium which contains both commercial
and residential units is a mixed-use condominium and is subject to the
requirements of s. 718.404.
(24) "Special assessment" means any assessment levied against
a unit owner other than the assessment required by a budget adopted annually.
(25) "Timeshare estate" means any interest in a unit under which
the exclusive right of use, possession, or occupancy of the unit circulates
among the various purchasers of a timeshare plan pursuant to chapter 721
on a recurring basis for a period of time.
(26) "Timeshare unit" means a unit in which timeshare estates
have been created.
(27) "Unit" means a part of the condominium property which is
subject to exclusive ownership. A unit may be in improvements, land, or
land and improvements together, as specified in the declaration.
(28) "Unit owner" or "owner of a unit" means a record owner of
legal title to a condominium parcel.
(29) "Voting certificate" means a document which designates one
of the record title owners, or the corporate, partnership, or entity representative,
who is authorized to vote on behalf of a condominium unit that is owned
by more than one owner or by any entity.
(30) "Voting interests" means the voting rights distributed to
the association members pursuant to 1s. 718.104(4)(i). In a multicondominium
association, the voting interests of the association are the voting rights
distributed to the unit owners in all condominiums operated by the association.
On matters related to a specific condominium in a multicondominium association,
the voting interests of the condominium are the voting rights distributed
to the unit owners in that condominium.
Power of attorney; compliance with chapter.--The use of a power of
attorney that affects any aspect of the operation of a condominium shall
be subject to and in compliance with the provisions of this chapter and
all condominium documents, association rules and other rules adopted pursuant
to this chapter, and all other covenants, conditions, and restrictions
in force at the time of the execution of the power of attorney.
Creation of condominiums; contents of declaration.--Every
condominium created in this state shall be created pursuant to this chapter.
(1) A condominium may be created on land owned in fee simple
or held under a lease complying with the provisions of s. 718.401.
(2) A condominium is created by recording a declaration in the
public records of the county where the land is located, executed and acknowledged
with the requirements for a deed. All persons who have record title to
the interest in the land being submitted to condominium ownership, or their
lawfully authorized agents, must join in the execution of the declaration.
Upon the recording of the declaration, or an amendment adding a phase to
the condominium under s. 718.403(6), all units described in the declaration
or phase amendment as being located in or on the land then being submitted
to condominium ownership shall come into existence, regardless of the state
of completion of planned improvements in which the units may be located.
Upon recording the declaration of condominium pursuant to this section,
the developer shall file the recording information with the division within
120 calendar days on a form prescribed by the division.
(3) All persons who have any record interest in any mortgage
encumbering the interest in the land being submitted to condominium ownership
must either join in the execution of the declaration or execute, with the
requirements for deed, and record, a consent to the declaration or an agreement
subordinating their mortgage interest to the declaration.
(4) The declaration must contain or provide for the following
(a) A statement submitting the property to condominium ownership.
(b) The name by which the condominium property is to be identified,
which shall include the word "condominium" or be followed by the words
(c) The legal description of the land and, if a leasehold estate
is submitted to condominium, an identification of the lease.
(d) An identification of each unit by letter, name, or number,
or combination thereof, so that no unit bears the same designation as any
(e) A survey of the land which meets the minimum technical standards
set forth by the Board of Professional Surveyors and Mappers, pursuant
to s. 472.027, and a graphic description of the improvements in which units
are located and a plot plan thereof that, together with the declaration,
are in sufficient detail to identify the common elements and each unit
and their relative locations and approximate dimensions. Failure of the
survey to meet minimum technical standards shall not invalidate an otherwise
validly created condominium. The survey, graphic description, and plot
plan may be in the form of exhibits consisting of building plans, floor
plans, maps, surveys, or sketches. If the construction of the condominium
is not substantially completed, there shall be a statement to that effect,
and, upon substantial completion of construction, the developer or the
association shall amend the declaration to include the certificate described
below. The amendment may be accomplished by referring to the recording
data of a survey of the condominium that complies with the certificate.
A certificate of a surveyor and mapper authorized to practice in this state
shall be included in or attached to the declaration or the survey or graphic
description as recorded under s. 718.105 that the construction of the improvements
is substantially complete so that the material, together with the provisions
of the declaration describing the condominium property, is an accurate
representation of the location and dimensions of the improvements and so
that the identification, location, and dimensions of the common elements
and of each unit can be determined from these materials. Completed units
within each substantially completed building in a condominium development
may be conveyed to purchasers, notwithstanding that other buildings in
the condominium are not substantially completed, provided that all planned
improvements, including, but not limited to, landscaping, utility services
and access to the unit, and common-element facilities serving such building,
as set forth in the declaration, are first completed and the declaration
of condominium is first recorded and provided that as to the units being
conveyed there is a certificate of a surveyor and mapper as required above,
including certification that all planned improvements, including, but not
limited to, landscaping, utility services and access to the unit, and common-element
facilities serving the building in which the units to be conveyed are located
have been substantially completed, and such certificate is recorded with
the original declaration or as an amendment to such declaration. This section
shall not, however, operate to require development of improvements and
amenities declared to be included in future phases pursuant to s. 718.403
prior to conveying a unit as provided herein. For the purposes of this
section, a "certificate of a surveyor and mapper" means certification by
a surveyor and mapper in the form provided herein and may include, along
with certification by a surveyor and mapper, when appropriate, certification
by an architect or engineer authorized to practice in this state. Notwithstanding
the requirements of substantial completion provided in this section, nothing
contained herein shall prohibit or impair the validity of a mortgage encumbering
units together with an undivided interest in the common elements as described
in a declaration of condominium recorded prior to the recording of a certificate
of a surveyor and mapper as provided herein.
(f) The undivided share of ownership of the common elements and
common surplus of the condominium that is appurtenant to each unit stated
as a percentage or a fraction of the whole. In the declaration of condominium
for residential condominiums created after April 1, 1992, the ownership
share of the common elements assigned to each residential unit shall be
based either upon the total square footage of each residential unit in
uniform relationship to the total square footage of each other residential
unit in the condominium or on an equal fractional basis.
(g) The percentage or fractional shares of liability for common
expenses of the condominium, which, for all residential units, must be
the same as the undivided shares of ownership of the common elements and
common surplus appurtenant to each unit as provided for in paragraph (f).
(h) If a developer reserves the right, in a declaration recorded
on or after July 1, 2000, to create a multicondominium, the declaration
must state, or provide a specific formula for determining, the fractional
or percentage shares of liability for the common expenses of the association
and of ownership of the common surplus of the association to be allocated
to the units in each condominium to be operated by the association. If
the declaration as originally recorded fails to so provide, the share of
liability for the common expenses of the association and of ownership of
the common surplus of the association allocated to each unit in each condominium
operated by the association shall be a fraction of the whole, the numerator
of which is the number "one" and the denominator of which is the total
number of units in all condominiums operated by the association.
(i) The name of the association, which must be a corporation
for profit or a corporation not for profit.
(j) Unit owners' membership and voting rights in the association.
(k) The document or documents creating the association, which
may be attached as an exhibit.
(l) A copy of the bylaws, which shall be attached as an exhibit.
Defects or omissions in the bylaws shall not affect the validity of the
condominium or title to the condominium parcels.
(m) Other desired provisions not inconsistent with this chapter.
(n) The creation of a nonexclusive easement for ingress and egress
over streets, walks, and other rights-of-way serving the units of a condominium,
as part of the common elements necessary to provide reasonable access to
the public ways, or a dedication of the streets, walks, and other rights-of-way
to the public. All easements for ingress and egress shall not be encumbered
by any leasehold or lien other than those on the condominium parcels, unless:
1. Any such lien is subordinate to the rights of unit owners,
2. The holder of any encumbrance or leasehold of any easement
has executed and recorded an agreement that the use-rights of each unit
owner will not be terminated as long as the unit owner has not been evicted
because of a default under the encumbrance or lease, and the use-rights
of any mortgagee of a unit who has acquired title to a unit may not be
(o) If timeshare estates will or may be created with respect
to any unit in the condominium, a statement in conspicuous type declaring
that timeshare estates will or may be created with respect to units in
the condominium. In addition, the degree, quantity, nature, and extent
of the timeshare estates that will or may be created shall be defined and
described in detail in the declaration, with a specific statement as to
the minimum duration of the recurring periods of rights of use, possession,
or occupancy that may be created with respect to any unit.
(5) The declaration may include covenants and restrictions concerning
the use, occupancy, and transfer of the units permitted by law with reference
to real property. However, the rule against perpetuities shall not defeat
a right given any person or entity by the declaration for the purpose of
allowing unit owners to retain reasonable control over the use, occupancy,
and transfer of units.
(6) A person who joins in, or consents to the execution of, a
declaration subjects his or her interest in the condominium property to
the provisions of the declaration.
(7) All provisions of the declaration are enforceable equitable
servitudes, run with the land, and are effective until the condominium
Timeshare estates; limitation on creation.--No timeshare
estates shall be created with respect to any condominium unit except pursuant
to provisions in the declaration expressly permitting the creation of such
Recording of declaration.--
(1) When executed as required by s. 718.104, a declaration together
with all exhibits and all amendments is entitled to recordation as an agreement
relating to the conveyance of land.
(2) Graphic descriptions of improvements constituting exhibits
to a declaration, when accompanied by the certificate of a surveyor required
by s. 718.104, may be recorded as a part of a declaration without approval
of any public body or officer.
(3) The clerk of the circuit court recording the declaration
may, for his or her convenience, file the exhibits of a declaration which
contains graphic descriptions of improvements in a separate book, and shall
indicate the place of filing upon the margin of the record of the declaration.
(4)(a) If the declaration does not have the certificate or the
survey or graphic description of the improvements required under s. 718.104(4)(e),
the developer shall deliver therewith to the clerk an estimate, signed
by a surveyor authorized to practice in this state, of the cost of a final
survey or graphic description providing the certificate prescribed by s.
718.104(4)(e), and shall deposit with the clerk the sum of money specified
in the estimate.
(b) The clerk shall hold the money until an amendment to the
declaration is recorded that complies with the certificate requirements
of s. 718.104(4)(e). At that time, the clerk shall pay to the person presenting
the amendment to the declaration the sum of money deposited, without making
any charge for holding the sum, receiving it, or paying out, other than
the fees required for recording the condominium documents.
(c) If the sum of money held by the clerk has not been paid to
the developer or association as provided in paragraph (b) by 3 years after
the date the declaration was originally recorded, the clerk in his or her
discretion may notify, in writing, the registered agent of the association
that the sum is still available and the purpose for which it was deposited.
If the association does not record the certificate within 90 days after
the clerk has given the notice, the clerk may disburse the money to the
developer. If the developer cannot be located, the clerk shall disburse
the money to the Division of Florida Land Sales, Condominiums, and Mobile
Homes for deposit in the Division of Florida Land Sales, Condominiums,
and Mobile Homes Trust Fund.
(5) When a declaration of condominium is recorded pursuant to
this section, a certificate or receipted bill shall be filed with the clerk
of the circuit court in the county where the property is located showing
that all taxes due and owing on the property have been paid in full as
of the date of recordation.
Condominium parcels; appurtenances; possession and enjoyment.--
(1) A condominium parcel created by the declaration is a separate
parcel of real property, even though the condominium is created on a leasehold.
(2) There shall pass with a unit, as appurtenances thereto:
(a) An undivided share in the common elements and common surplus.
(b) The exclusive right to use such portion of the common elements
as may be provided by the declaration, including the right to transfer
such right to other units or unit owners to the extent authorized by the
declaration as originally recorded, or amendments to the declaration adopted
under s. 718.110(2).
(c) An exclusive easement for the use of the airspace occupied
by the unit as it exists at any particular time and as the unit may lawfully
be altered or reconstructed from time to time. An easement in airspace
which is vacated shall be terminated automatically.
(d) Membership in the association designated in the declaration,
with the full voting rights appertaining thereto.
(e) Other appurtenances as may be provided in the declaration.
(3) A unit owner is entitled to the exclusive possession of his
or her unit, subject to the provisions of s. 718.111(5). He or she is entitled
to use the common elements in accordance with the purposes for which they
are intended, but no use may hinder or encroach upon the lawful rights
of other unit owners.
(4) When a unit is leased, a tenant shall have all use rights
in the association property and those common elements otherwise readily
available for use generally by unit owners and the unit owner shall not
have such rights except as a guest, unless such rights are waived in writing
by the tenant. Nothing in this subsection shall interfere with the access
rights of the unit owner as a landlord pursuant to chapter 83. The association
shall have the right to adopt rules to prohibit dual usage by a unit owner
and a tenant of association property and common elements otherwise readily
available for use generally by unit owners.
Restraint upon separation and partition of common elements.--
(1) The undivided share in the common elements which is appurtenant
to a unit shall not be separated from it and shall pass with the title
to the unit, whether or not separately described.
(2) The share in the common elements appurtenant to a unit cannot
be conveyed or encumbered except together with the unit.
(3) The shares in the common elements appurtenant to units are
undivided, and no action for partition of the common elements shall lie.
(1) "Common elements" includes within its meaning the following:
(a) The condominium property which is not included within the
(b) Easements through units for conduits, ducts, plumbing, wiring,
and other facilities for the furnishing of utility services to units and
the common elements.
(c) An easement of support in every portion of a unit which contributes
to the support of a building.
(d) The property and installations required for the furnishing
of utilities and other services to more than one unit or to the common
(2) The declaration may designate other parts of the condominium
property as common elements.
Certain regulations not to be retroactively applied.
the provisions of chapter 633 or of any other code, statute, ordinance,
administrative rule, or regulation, or any interpretation thereof, an
association, condominium, or unit owner is not obligated to retrofit the common
elements or units of a residential condominium that meets the definition of
"housing for older persons" in s. 760.29(4)(b)3.
to comply with requirements relating to handrails and guardrails if the unit
owners have voted to forego such retrofitting by the affirmative vote of
two-thirds of all voting interests in the affected condominium. However, a
condominium association may not vote to forego the retrofitting in common areas
in a high-rise building. For the purposes of this section, the term
"high-rise building" means a building that is greater than 75 feet in
height where the building height is measured from the lowest level of fire
department access to the floor of the highest occupiable level. For the purposes
of this section, the term "common areas" means stairwells and exposed,
outdoor walkways and corridors. In no event shall the local authority having
jurisdiction require retrofitting of common areas with handrails and guardrails
before the end of 2014.
(1) A vote to forego
retrofitting may not be obtained by general proxy or limited proxy, but shall be
obtained by a vote personally cast at a duly called membership meeting, or by
execution of a written consent by the member, and shall be effective upon the
recording of a certificate attesting to such vote in the public records of the
county where the condominium is located. The association shall provide each unit
owner written notice of the vote to forego retrofitting of the required
handrails or guardrails, or both, in at least 16-point bold type, by certified
mail, within 20 days after the association's vote. After such notice is provided
to each owner, a copy of such notice shall be provided by the current owner to a
new owner prior to closing and shall be provided by a unit owner to a renter
prior to signing a lease.
(2) As part of the
information collected annually from condominiums, the division shall require
condominium associations to report the membership vote and recording of a
certificate under this subsection and, if retrofitting has been undertaken, the
per-unit cost of such work. The division shall annually report to the Division
of State Fire Marshal of the Department of Financial Services the number of
condominiums that have elected to forego retrofitting.
1, ch. 2004-80.
Legal description of condominium parcels.--
Following the recording of the declaration, a description of a condominium
parcel by the number or other designation by which the unit is identified
in the declaration, together with the recording data identifying the declaration,
shall be a sufficient legal description for all purposes. The description
includes all appurtenances to the unit concerned, whether or not separately
described, including, but not limited to, the undivided share in the common
elements appurtenant thereto.
Amendment of declaration; correction of error or omission in declaration
by circuit court.--
(1)(a) If the declaration fails to provide a method of amendment,
the declaration may be amended as to all matters except those described
in subsection (4) or subsection (8) if the amendment is approved by the
owners of not less than two-thirds of the units. Except as to those matters
described in subsection (4) or subsection (8), no declaration recorded
after April 1, 1992, shall require that amendments be approved by more
than four-fifths of the voting interests.
(b) No provision of the declaration shall be revised or amended
by reference to its title or number only. Proposals to amend existing provisions
of the declaration shall contain the full text of the provision to be amended;
new words shall be inserted in the text and underlined; and words to be
deleted shall be lined through with hyphens. However, if the proposed change
is so extensive that this procedure would hinder, rather than assist, the
understanding of the proposed amendment, it is not necessary to use underlining
and hyphens as indicators of words added or deleted, but, instead, a notation
must be inserted immediately preceding the proposed amendment in substantially
the following language: "Substantial rewording of declaration. See provision
_____ for present text."
(c) Nonmaterial errors or omissions in the amendment process
will not invalidate an otherwise properly promulgated amendment.
(2) An amendment, other than amendments made by the developer
pursuant to ss. 718.104, 718.403, and 718.504(6), (7), and (9) without
a vote of the unit owners and any rights the developer may have in the
declaration to amend without consent of the unit owners which shall be
limited to matters other than those under subsections (4) and (8), shall
be evidenced by a certificate of the association which shall include the
recording data identifying the declaration and shall be executed in the
form required for the execution of a deed. An amendment by the developer
must be evidenced in writing, but a certificate of the association is not
required. The developer of a timeshare condominium may reserve specific
rights in the declaration to amend the declaration without the consent
of the unit owners.
(3) An amendment of a declaration is effective when properly
recorded in the public records of the county where the declaration is recorded.
(4) Unless otherwise provided in the declaration as originally
recorded, no amendment may change the configuration or size of any unit
in any material fashion, materially alter or modify the appurtenances to
the unit, or change the proportion or percentage by which the unit owner
shares the common expenses of the condominium and owns the common surplus
of the condominium unless the record owner of the unit and all record owners
of liens on the unit join in the execution of the amendment and unless
all the record owners of all other units in the same condominium approve
the amendment. The acquisition of property by the association, and material
alterations or substantial additions to such property or the common elements
by the association in accordance with s. 718.111(7) or s. 718.113, shall
not be deemed to constitute a material alteration or modification of the
appurtenances to the units. A declaration recorded after April 1, 1992,
may not require the approval of less than a majority of total voting interests
of the condominium for amendments under this subsection, unless otherwise
required by a governmental entity.
(5) If it appears that through a scrivener's error a unit has
not been designated as owning an appropriate undivided share of the common
elements or does not bear an appropriate share of the common expenses or
that all the common expenses or interest in the common surplus or all of
the common elements in the condominium have not been distributed in the
declaration, so that the sum total of the shares of common elements which
have been distributed or the sum total of the shares of the common expenses
or ownership of common surplus fails to equal 100 percent, or if it appears
that more than 100 percent of common elements or common expenses or ownership
of the common surplus have been distributed, the error may be corrected
by filing an amendment to the declaration approved by the board of administration
or a majority of the unit owners.
(6) The common elements designated by the declaration may be
enlarged by an amendment to the declaration. The amendment must describe
the interest in the property and must submit the property to the terms
of the declaration. The amendment must be approved and executed as provided
in this section. The amendment divests the association of title to the
land and vests title in the unit owners as part of the common elements,
without naming them and without further conveyance, in the same proportion
as the undivided shares in the common elements that are appurtenant to
the unit owned by them.
(7) The declarations, bylaws, and common elements of two or more
independent condominiums of a single complex may be merged to form a single
condominium, upon the approval of such voting interest of each condominium
as is required by the declaration for modifying the appurtenances to the
units or changing the proportion or percentages by which the owners of
the parcel share the common expenses and own the common surplus; upon the
approval of all record owners of liens; and upon the recording of new or
amended articles of incorporation, declarations, and bylaws.
(8) Unless otherwise provided in the declaration as originally
recorded, no amendment to the declaration may permit timeshare estates
to be created in any unit of the condominium, unless the record owner of
each unit of the condominium and the record owners of liens on each unit
of the condominium join in the execution of the amendment.
(9) If there is an omission or error in a declaration, or in
any other document required by law to establish the condominium, the association
may correct the error or omission by an amendment to the declaration or
to the other document required to create a condominium in the manner provided
in the declaration to amend the declaration or, if none is provided, by
vote of a majority of the voting interests of the condominium. The amendment
is effective when passed and approved and a certificate of amendment is
executed and recorded as provided in subsections (2) and (3). This procedure
for amendment cannot be used if such an amendment would materially or adversely
affect property rights of unit owners, unless the affected unit owners
consent in writing. This subsection does not restrict the powers of the
association to otherwise amend the declaration, or other documentation,
but authorizes a simple process of amendment requiring a lesser vote for
the purpose of curing defects, errors, or omissions when the property rights
of unit owners are not materially or adversely affected.
(10) If there is an omission or error in a declaration of condominium,
or any other document required to establish the condominium, which omission
or error would affect the valid existence of the condominium, the circuit
court has jurisdiction to entertain a petition of one or more of the unit
owners in the condominium, or of the association, to correct the error
or omission, and the action may be a class action. The court may require
that one or more methods of correcting the error or omission be submitted
to the unit owners to determine the most acceptable correction. All unit
owners, the association, and the mortgagees of a first mortgage of record
must be joined as parties to the action. Service of process on unit owners
may be by publication, but the plaintiff must furnish every unit owner
not personally served with process with a copy of the petition and final
decree of the court by certified mail, return receipt requested, at the
unit owner's last known residence address. If an action to determine whether
the declaration or another condominium document complies with the mandatory
requirements for the formation of a condominium is not brought within 3
years of the recording of the declaration, the declaration and other documents
shall be effective under this chapter to create a condominium, as of the
date the declaration was recorded, whether or not the documents substantially
comply with the mandatory requirements of law. However, both before and
after the expiration of this 3-year period, the circuit court has jurisdiction
to entertain a petition permitted under this subsection for the correction
of the documentation, and other methods of amendment may be utilized to
correct the errors or omissions at any time.
(11) Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary contained
in this section, any declaration recorded after April 1, 1992, may not
require the consent or joinder of some or all mortgagees of units to or
in amendments to the declaration, unless the requirement is limited to
amendments materially affecting the rights or interests of the mortgagees,
or as otherwise required by the Federal National Mortgage Association or
the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, and unless the requirement
provides that such consent may not be unreasonably withheld. It shall be
presumed that, except as to those matters described in subsections (4)
and (8), amendments to the declaration do not materially affect the rights
or interests of mortgagees. In the event mortgagee consent is provided
other than by properly recorded joinder, such consent shall be evidenced
by affidavit of the association recorded in the public records of the county
where the declaration is recorded.
(12)(a) With respect to an existing multicondominium association,
any amendment to change the fractional or percentage share of liability
for the common expenses of the association and ownership of the common
surplus of the association must be approved by at least a majority of the
total voting interests of each condominium operated by the association
unless the declarations of all condominiums operated by the association
uniformly require approval by a greater percentage of the voting interests
of each condominium.
(b) Unless approval by a greater percentage of the voting interests
of an existing multicondominium association is expressly required in the
declaration of an existing condominium, the declaration may be amended
upon approval of at least a majority of the total voting interests of each
condominium operated by the multicondominium association for the purpose
1. Setting forth in the declaration the formula currently utilized,
but not previously stated in the declaration, for determining the percentage
or fractional shares of liability for the common expenses of the multicondominium
association and ownership of the common surplus of the multicondominium
2. Providing for the creation or enlargement of a multicondominium
association by the merger or consolidation of two or more associations
and changing the name of the association, as appropriate.
(13) Any amendment restricting unit owners' rights relating to the
rental of units applies only to unit owners who consent to the amendment and
unit owners who purchase their units after the effective date of that amendment.
(1) CORPORATE ENTITY.--
(a) The operation of the condominium shall be by the association,
which must be a Florida corporation for profit or a Florida corporation
not for profit. However, any association which was in existence on January
1, 1977, need not be incorporated. The owners of units shall be shareholders
or members of the association. The officers and directors of the association
have a fiduciary relationship to the unit owners. It is the intent of the
Legislature that nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as providing
for or removing a requirement of a fiduciary relationship between any manager
employed by the association and the unit owners. An officer, director,
or manager may not solicit, offer to accept, or accept any thing or service
of value for which consideration has not been provided for his or her own
benefit or that of his or her immediate family, from any person providing
or proposing to provide goods or services to the association. Any such
officer, director, or manager who knowingly so solicits, offers to accept,
or accepts any thing or service of value is subject to a civil penalty
pursuant to s. 718.501(1)(d). However, this paragraph does not prohibit
an officer, director, or manager from accepting services or items received
in connection with trade fairs or education programs. An association may
operate more than one condominium.
(b) A director of the association who is present at a meeting
of its board at which action on any corporate matter is taken shall be
presumed to have assented to the action taken unless he or she votes against
such action or abstains from voting in respect thereto because of an asserted
conflict of interest. Directors may not vote by proxy or by secret ballot
at board meetings, except that officers may be elected by secret ballot.
A vote or abstention for each member present shall be recorded in the minutes.
(c) A unit owner does not have any authority to act for the association
by reason of being a unit owner.
(2) POWERS AND DUTIES.--The powers and duties of the association
include those set forth in this section and, except as expressly limited
or restricted in this chapter, those set forth in the declaration and bylaws
and chapters 607 and 617, as applicable.
(3) POWER TO MANAGE CONDOMINIUM PROPERTY AND TO CONTRACT, SUE,
AND BE SUED.--The association may contract, sue, or be sued with respect
to the exercise or nonexercise of its powers. For these purposes, the powers
of the association include, but are not limited to, the maintenance, management,
and operation of the condominium property. After control of the association
is obtained by unit owners other than the developer, the association may
institute, maintain, settle, or appeal actions or hearings in its name
on behalf of all unit owners concerning matters of common interest to most
or all unit owners, including, but not limited to, the common elements;
the roof and structural components of a building or other improvements;
mechanical, electrical, and plumbing elements serving an improvement or
a building; representations of the developer pertaining to any existing
or proposed commonly used facilities; and protesting ad valorem taxes on
commonly used facilities and on units; and may defend actions in eminent
domain or bring inverse condemnation actions. If the association has the
authority to maintain a class action, the association may be joined in
an action as representative of that class with reference to litigation
and disputes involving the matters for which the association could bring
a class action. Nothing herein limits any statutory or common-law right
of any individual unit owner or class of unit owners to bring any action
without participation by the association which may otherwise be available.
(4) ASSESSMENTS; MANAGEMENT OF COMMON ELEMENTS.--The association
has the power to make and collect assessments and to lease, maintain, repair,
and replace the common elements; however, the association may not charge
a use fee against a unit owner for the use of common elements or association
property unless otherwise provided for in the declaration of condominium
or by a majority vote of the association or unless the charges relate to
expenses incurred by an owner having exclusive use of the common elements
or association property.
(5) RIGHT OF ACCESS TO UNITS.--The association has the irrevocable
right of access to each unit during reasonable hours, when necessary for
the maintenance, repair, or replacement of any common elements or of any
portion of a unit to be maintained by the association pursuant to the declaration
or as necessary to prevent damage to the common elements or to a unit or
(6) OPERATION OF CONDOMINIUMS CREATED PRIOR TO 1977.--Notwithstanding
any provision of this chapter, an association may operate two or more residential
condominiums in which the initial condominium declaration was recorded
prior to January 1, 1977, and may continue to so operate such condominiums
as a single condominium for purposes of financial matters, including budgets,
assessments, accounting, recordkeeping, and similar matters, if provision
is made for such consolidated operation in the applicable declarations
of each such condominium or in the bylaws. An association for such condominiums
may also provide for consolidated financial operation as described in this
section either by amending its declaration pursuant to s. 718.110(1)(a)
or by amending its bylaws and having the amendment approved by not less
than two-thirds of the total voting interests. Notwithstanding any provision
in this chapter, common expenses for residential condominiums in such a
project being operated by a single association may be assessed against
all unit owners in such project pursuant to the proportions or percentages
established therefor in the declarations as initially recorded or in the
bylaws as initially adopted, subject, however, to the limitations of ss.
718.116 and 718.302.
(7) TITLE TO PROPERTY.-- (a) The association has the power
to acquire title to property or otherwise hold, convey, lease, and mortgage
association property for the use and benefit of its members. The power
to acquire personal property shall be exercised by the board of administration.
Except as otherwise permitted in subsections (8) and (9) and in s. 718.114,
no association may acquire, convey, lease, or mortgage association real
property except in the manner provided in the declaration, and if the declaration
does not specify the procedure, then approval of 75 percent of the total
voting interests shall be required.
(b) Subject to the provisions of s. 718.112(2)(m), the association,
through its board, has the limited power to convey a portion of the common
elements to a condemning authority for the purposes of providing utility
easements, right-of-way expansion, or other public purposes, whether negotiated
or as a result of eminent domain proceedings.
(8) PURCHASE OF LEASES.--The association has the power to purchase
any land or recreation lease upon the approval of such voting interest
as is required by the declaration. If the declaration makes no provision
for acquisition of the land or recreation lease, the vote required shall
be that required to amend the declaration to permit the acquisition.
(9) PURCHASE OF UNITS.--The association has the power, unless
prohibited by the declaration, articles of incorporation, or bylaws of
the association, to purchase units in the condominium and to acquire and
hold, lease, mortgage, and convey them. There shall be no limitation on
the association's right to purchase a unit at a foreclosure sale resulting
from the association's foreclosure of its lien for unpaid assessments,
or to take title by deed in lieu of foreclosure.
(10) EASEMENTS.--Unless prohibited by the declaration, the board
of administration has the authority, without the joinder of any unit owner,
to grant, modify, or move any easement if the easement constitutes part
of or crosses the common elements or association property. This subsection
does not authorize the board of administration to modify, move, or vacate
any easement created in whole or in part for the use or benefit of anyone
other than the unit owners, or crossing the property of anyone other than
the unit owners, without the consent or approval of those other persons
having the use or benefit of the easement, as required by law or by the
instrument creating the easement. Nothing in this subsection affects the
minimum requirements of 1s. 718.104(4)(m) or the powers enumerated in subsection
(a) A unit-owner controlled association shall use its best efforts
to obtain and maintain adequate insurance to protect the association, the
association property, the common elements, and the condominium property
required to be insured by the association pursuant to paragraph (b). If
the association is developer controlled, the association shall exercise
due diligence to obtain and maintain such insurance. Failure to obtain
and maintain adequate insurance during any period of developer control
shall constitute a breach of fiduciary responsibility by the developer-appointed
members of the board of directors of the association, unless said members
can show that despite such failure, they have exercised due diligence.
An association may also obtain and maintain liability insurance for directors
and officers, insurance for the benefit of association employees, and flood
insurance for common elements, association property, and units. An association
or group of associations may self-insure against claims against the association,
the association property, and the condominium property required to be insured
by an association, upon compliance with ss. 624.460-624.488. A copy of
each policy of insurance in effect shall be made available for inspection
by unit owners at reasonable times.
(b) Every hazard policy which is issued to protect a condominium
building shall provide that the word "building" wherever used in the policy
include, but not necessarily be limited to, fixtures, installations, or
additions comprising that part of the building within the unfinished interior
surfaces of the perimeter walls, floors, and ceilings of the individual
units initially installed, or replacements thereof of like kind or quality,
in accordance with the original plans and specifications, or as they existed
at the time the unit was initially conveyed if the original plans and specifications
are not available. However, unless prior to October 1, 1986, the association
is required by the declaration to provide coverage therefor, the word "building"
does not include unit floor coverings, wall coverings, or ceiling coverings,
and, as to contracts entered into after July 1, 1992, does not include
the following equipment if it is located within a unit and the unit owner
is required to repair or replace such equipment: electrical fixtures, appliances,
air conditioner or heating equipment, water heaters, or built-in cabinets.
With respect to the coverage provided for by this paragraph, the unit owners
shall be considered additional insureds under the policy.
(c) Every insurance policy issued to an individual unit owner
shall provide that the coverage afforded by such policy is excess over
the amount recoverable under any other policy covering the same property
without rights of subrogation against the association.
(d) The association shall obtain and maintain adequate insurance
or fidelity bonding of all persons who control or disburse funds of the
association. The insurance policy or fidelity bond must cover the maximum
funds that will be in the custody of the association or its management
agent at any one time. As used in this paragraph, the term "persons who
control or disburse funds of the association" includes, but is not limited
to, those individuals authorized to sign checks and the president, secretary,
and treasurer of the association. The association shall bear the cost of
(12) OFFICIAL RECORDS.--
(a) From the inception of the association, the association shall
maintain each of the following items, when applicable, which shall constitute
the official records of the association:
1. A copy of the plans, permits, warranties, and other items
provided by the developer pursuant to s. 718.301(4).
2. A photocopy of the recorded declaration of condominium of
each condominium operated by the association and of each amendment to each
3. A photocopy of the recorded bylaws of the association and
of each amendment to the bylaws.
4. A certified copy of the articles of incorporation of the association,
or other documents creating the association, and of each amendment thereto.
5. A copy of the current rules of the association.
6. A book or books which contain the minutes
of all meetings of the association, of the board of directors, and of unit
owners, which minutes shall be retained for a period of not less than 7
7. A current roster of all unit owners and their mailing addresses,
unit identifications, voting certifications, and, if known, telephone numbers.
8. All current insurance policies of the association and condominiums
operated by the association.
9. A current copy of any management agreement, lease, or other
contract to which the association is a party or under which the association
or the unit owners have an obligation or responsibility.
10. Bills of sale or transfer for all property owned by the association.
11. Accounting records for the association and separate accounting
records for each condominium which the association operates. All accounting
records shall be maintained for a period of not less than 7 years. The
accounting records shall include, but are not limited to:
a. Accurate, itemized, and detailed records of all receipts and
b. A current account and a monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly statement
of the account for each unit designating the name of the unit owner, the
due date and amount of each assessment, the amount paid upon the account,
and the balance due.
c. All audits, reviews, accounting statements, and financial
reports of the association or condominium.
d. All contracts for work to be performed. Bids for work to be
performed shall also be considered official records and shall be maintained
for a period of 1 year.
12. Ballots, sign-in sheets, voting proxies, and all other papers
relating to voting by unit owners, which shall be maintained for a period
of 1 year from the date of the election, vote, or meeting to which the
document relates. 13. All rental records, when the association is
acting as agent for the rental of condominium units.
14. A copy of the current question and answer sheet as described
by s. 718.504.
15. All other records of the association not specifically included
in the foregoing which are related to the operation of the association.
(b) The official records of the association
shall be maintained within the state. The records of the association shall
be made available to a unit owner within 5 working days after receipt of
written request by the board or its designee. This paragraph may be complied
with by having a copy of the official records of the association available
for inspection or copying on the condominium property or association property.
(c) 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
association member. The association may adopt reasonable rules regarding
the frequency, time, location, notice, and manner of record inspections
and copying. The failure of an association to
provide the records within 10 working days after receipt of a written request
shall create a rebuttable presumption that the association willfully failed
to comply with this paragraph. 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 with this paragraph. The minimum damages shall
be $50 per calendar day up to 10 days, the calculation to begin on the
11th working day after receipt of the written request. The failure to permit
inspection of the association records as provided herein entitles any person
prevailing in an enforcement action to recover reasonable attorney's fees
from the person in control of the records who, directly or indirectly,
knowingly denied access to the records for inspection. The association
shall maintain an adequate number of copies of the declaration, articles
of incorporation, bylaws, and rules, and all amendments to each of the
foregoing, as well as the question and answer sheet provided for in s.
718.504 and year-end financial information required in this section on
the condominium property to ensure their availability to unit owners and
prospective purchasers, and may charge its actual costs for preparing and
furnishing these documents to those requesting the same. Notwithstanding
the provisions of this paragraph, the following records shall not be accessible
to unit owners:
1. Any record protected by the lawyer-client privilege as described
in s. 90.502; and any record protected by the work-product privilege, including
any record prepared by an association attorney or prepared at the attorney's
express direction; which reflects a mental impression, conclusion, litigation
strategy, or legal theory of the attorney or the association, and which
was prepared exclusively for civil or criminal litigation or for adversarial
administrative proceedings, or which was prepared in anticipation of imminent
civil or criminal litigation or imminent adversarial administrative proceedings
until the conclusion of the litigation or adversarial administrative proceedings.
2. Information obtained by an association in connection with
the approval of the lease, sale, or other transfer of a unit.
3. Medical records of unit owners.
(d) The association shall prepare a question and answer sheet
as described in s. 718.504, and shall update it annually.
(e)1. The association or its authorized agent is not required to
provide a prospective purchaser or lienholder with information about the
condominium or the association other than information or documents required by
this chapter to be made available or disclosed. The association or its
authorized agent may charge a reasonable fee to the prospective purchaser,
lienholder, or the current unit owner for providing good faith responses to
requests for information by or on behalf of a prospective purchaser or
lienholder, other than that required by law, if the fee does not exceed $150
plus the reasonable cost of photocopying and any attorney's fees incurred by the
association in connection with the response.
2. An association and its authorized agent are not liable for
providing such information in good faith pursuant to a written request if the
person providing the information includes a written statement in substantially
the following form: "The responses herein are made in good faith and to the
best of my ability as to their accuracy."
(13) FINANCIAL REPORTING.--Within 90 days after the end of the
fiscal year, or annually on a date provided in the bylaws, the association shall
prepare and complete, or contract for the preparation and completion of, a
financial report for the preceding fiscal year. Within 21 days after the final
financial report is completed by the association or received from the third
party, but not later than 120 days after the end of the fiscal year or other
date as provided in the bylaws, the association shall mail to each unit owner at
the address last furnished to the association by the unit owner, or hand deliver
to each unit owner, a copy of the financial report or a notice that a copy of
the financial report will be mailed or hand delivered to the unit owner, without
charge, upon receipt of a written request from the unit owner. The division
shall adopt rules setting forth uniform accounting principles and standards to
be used by all associations and shall adopt rules addressing financial reporting
requirements for multicondominium associations. In adopting such rules, the
division shall consider the number of members and annual revenues of an
association. Financial reports shall be prepared as follows:
(a) An association that meets the criteria of this paragraph shall
prepare or cause to be prepared a complete set of financial statements in
accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. The financial
statements shall be based upon the association's total annual revenues, as
1. An association with total annual revenues of $100,000 or more,
but less than $200,000, shall prepare compiled financial statements.
2. An association with total annual revenues of at least $200,000,
but less than $400,000, shall prepare reviewed financial statements.
3. An association with total annual revenues of $400,000 or more
shall prepare audited financial statements.
(b)1. An association with total annual revenues of less than
$100,000 shall prepare a report of cash receipts and expenditures.
2. An association which operates less than 50 units, regardless of
the association's annual revenues, shall prepare a report of cash receipts and
expenditures in lieu of financial statements required by paragraph (a).
3. A report of cash receipts and disbursements must disclose the
amount of receipts by accounts and receipt classifications and the amount of
expenses by accounts and expense classifications, including, but not limited to,
the following, as applicable: costs for security, professional and management
fees and expenses, taxes, costs for recreation facilities, expenses for refuse
collection and utility services, expenses for lawn care, costs for building
maintenance and repair, insurance costs, administration and salary expenses, and
reserves accumulated and expended for capital expenditures, deferred
maintenance, and any other category for which the association maintains
(c) An association may prepare or cause to be prepared, without a
meeting of or approval by the unit owners:
1. Compiled, reviewed, or audited financial statements, if the
association is required to prepare a report of cash receipts and expenditures;
2. Reviewed or audited financial statements, if the association is
required to prepare compiled financial statements; or
3. Audited financial statements if the association is required to
prepare reviewed financial statements.
(d) If approved by a majority of the voting interests present at a
properly called meeting of the association, an association may prepare or cause
to be prepared:
1. A report of cash receipts and expenditures in lieu of a
compiled, reviewed, or audited financial statement;
2. A report of cash receipts and expenditures or a compiled
financial statement in lieu of a reviewed or audited financial statement; or
3. A report of cash receipts and expenditures, a compiled
financial statement, or a reviewed financial statement in lieu of an audited
Such meeting and approval must occur prior to the end of the fiscal year and is
effective only for the fiscal year in which the vote is taken. With respect to
an association to which the developer has not turned over control of the
association, all unit owners, including the developer, may vote on issues
related to the preparation of financial reports for the first 2 fiscal years of
the association's operation, beginning with the fiscal year in which the
declaration is recorded. Thereafter, all unit owners except the developer may
vote on such issues until control is turned over to the association by the
(14) COMMINGLING.--All funds collected by an association shall be
maintained separately in the association's name. For investment purposes only,
reserve funds may be commingled with operating funds of the association.
Commingled operating and reserve funds shall be accounted for separately, and a
commingled account shall not, at any time, be less than the amount identified as
reserve funds. This subsection does not prohibit a multicondominium association
from commingling the operating funds of separate condominiums or the reserve
funds of separate condominiums. Furthermore, for investment purposes only, a
multicondominium association may commingle the operating funds of separate
condominiums with the reserve funds of separate condominiums. A manager or
business entity required to be licensed or registered under s. 468.432, or an
agent, employee, officer, or director of an association, shall not commingle any
association funds with his or her funds or with the funds of any other
condominium association or the funds of a community association as defined in s.
(a) The operation of the association shall be governed by the
articles of incorporation if the association is incorporated, and the bylaws of
the association, which shall be included as exhibits to the recorded
declaration. If one association operates more than one condominium, it shall not
be necessary to rerecord the same articles of incorporation and bylaws as
exhibits to each declaration after the first, provided that in each case where
the articles and bylaws are not so recorded, the declaration expressly
incorporates them by reference as exhibits and identifies the book and page of
the public records where the first declaration to which they were attached is
(b) No amendment to the articles of incorporation or bylaws is
valid unless recorded with identification on the first page thereof of the book
and page of the public records where the declaration of each condominium
operated by the association is recorded.
1(2) REQUIRED PROVISIONS.--The bylaws shall provide for
the following and, if they do not do so, shall be deemed to include the
1. The form of administration of the association shall be
described indicating the title of the officers and board of administration and
specifying the powers, duties, manner of selection and removal, and
compensation, if any, of officers and boards. In the absence of such a
provision, the board of administration shall be composed of five members, except
in the case of a condominium which has five or fewer units, in which case in a
not-for-profit corporation the board shall consist of not fewer than three
members. In the absence of provisions to the contrary in the bylaws, the board
of administration shall have a president, a secretary, and a treasurer, who
shall perform the duties of such officers customarily performed by officers of
corporations. Unless prohibited in the bylaws, the board of administration may
appoint other officers and grant them the duties it deems appropriate. Unless
otherwise provided in the bylaws, the officers shall serve without compensation
and at the pleasure of the board of administration. Unless otherwise provided in
the bylaws, the members of the board shall serve without compensation.
2. When a unit owner files a written inquiry by certified mail
with the board of administration, the board shall respond in writing to the unit
owner within 30 days of receipt of the inquiry. The board's response shall
either give a substantive response to the inquirer, notify the inquirer that a
legal opinion has been requested, or notify the inquirer that advice has been
requested from the division. If the board requests advice from the division, the
board shall, within 10 days of its receipt of the advice, provide in writing a
substantive response to the inquirer. If a legal opinion is requested, the board
shall, within 60 days after the receipt of the inquiry, provide in writing a
substantive response to the inquiry. The failure to provide a substantive
response to the inquiry as provided herein precludes the board from recovering
attorney's fees and costs in any subsequent litigation, administrative
proceeding, or arbitration arising out of the inquiry. The association may
through its board of administration adopt reasonable rules and regulations
regarding the frequency and manner of responding to unit owner inquiries, one of
which may be that the association is only obligated to respond to one written
inquiry per unit in any given 30-day period. In such a case, any additional
inquiry or inquiries must be responded to in the subsequent 30-day period, or
periods, as applicable.
(b) Quorum; voting requirements; proxies.--
1. Unless a lower number is provided in the bylaws, the percentage
of voting interests required to constitute a quorum at a meeting of the members
shall be a majority of the voting interests. Unless otherwise provided in this
chapter or in the declaration, articles of incorporation, or bylaws, and except
as provided in subparagraph (d)3., decisions shall be made by owners of a
majority of the voting interests represented at a meeting at which a quorum is
2. Except as specifically otherwise provided herein, after January
1, 1992, unit owners may not vote by general proxy, but may vote by limited
proxies substantially conforming to a limited proxy form adopted by the
division. Limited proxies and general proxies may be used to establish a quorum.
Limited proxies shall be used for votes taken to waive or reduce reserves in
accordance with subparagraph (f)2.; for votes taken to waive the financial
reporting requirements of s. 718.111(13); for votes taken to amend the
declaration pursuant to s. 718.110; for votes taken to amend the articles of
incorporation or bylaws pursuant to this section; and for any other matter for
which this chapter requires or permits a vote of the unit owners. Except as
provided in paragraph (d), after January 1, 1992, no proxy, limited or general,
shall be used in the election of board members. General proxies may be used for
other matters for which limited proxies are not required, and may also be used
in voting for nonsubstantive changes to items for which a limited proxy is
required and given. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subparagraph, unit
owners may vote in person at unit owner meetings. Nothing contained herein shall
limit the use of general proxies or require the use of limited proxies for any
agenda item or election at any meeting of a timeshare condominium association.
3. Any proxy given shall be effective only for the specific
meeting for which originally given and any lawfully adjourned meetings thereof.
In no event shall any proxy be valid for a period longer than 90 days after the
date of the first meeting for which it was given. Every proxy is revocable at
any time at the pleasure of the unit owner executing it.
4. A member of the board of administration or a committee may
submit in writing his or her agreement or disagreement with any action taken at
a meeting that the member did not attend. This agreement or disagreement may not
be used as a vote for or against the action taken and may not be used for the
purposes of creating a quorum.
5. When any of the board or committee members meet by telephone
conference, those board or committee members attending by telephone conference
may be counted toward obtaining a quorum and may vote by telephone. A telephone
speaker must be used so that the conversation of those board or committee
members attending by telephone may be heard by the board or committee members
attending in person as well as by any unit owners present at a meeting.
(c) Board of administration meetings.--Meetings of the
board of administration at which a quorum of the members is present shall be
open to all unit owners. Any unit owner may tape record or videotape meetings of
the board of administration. The right to attend such meetings includes the
right to speak at such meetings with reference to all designated agenda items.
The division shall adopt reasonable rules governing the tape recording and
videotaping of the meeting. The association may adopt written reasonable rules
governing the frequency, duration, and manner of unit owner statements. Adequate
notice of all meetings, which notice shall specifically incorporate an
identification of agenda items, shall be posted conspicuously on the condominium
property at least 48 continuous hours preceding the meeting except in an
emergency. Any item not included on the notice may be taken up on an emergency
basis by at least a majority plus one of the members of the board. Such
emergency action shall be noticed and ratified at the next regular meeting of
the board. However, written notice of any meeting at which nonemergency special
assessments, or at which amendment to rules regarding unit use, will be
considered shall be mailed, delivered, or electronically transmitted to the unit
owners and posted conspicuously on the condominium property not less than 14
days prior to the meeting. Evidence of compliance with this 14-day notice shall
be made by an affidavit executed by the person providing the notice and filed
among the official records of the association. Upon notice to the unit owners,
the board shall by duly adopted rule designate a specific location on the
condominium property or association property upon which all notices of board
meetings shall be posted. If there is no condominium property or association
property upon which notices can be posted, notices of board meetings shall be
mailed, delivered, or electronically transmitted at least 14 days before the
meeting to the owner of each unit. In lieu of or in addition to the physical
posting of notice of any meeting of the board of administration on the
condominium property, the association may, by reasonable rule, adopt a procedure
for conspicuously posting and repeatedly broadcasting the notice and the agenda
on a closed-circuit cable television system serving the condominium association.
However, if broadcast notice is used in lieu of a notice posted physically on
the condominium property, the notice and agenda must be broadcast at least four
times every broadcast hour of each day that a posted notice is otherwise
required under this section. When broadcast notice is provided, the notice and
agenda must be broadcast in a manner and for a sufficient continuous length of
time so as to allow an average reader to observe the notice and read and
comprehend the entire content of the notice and the agenda. Notice of any
meeting in which regular assessments against unit owners are to be considered
for any reason shall specifically contain a statement that assessments will be
considered and the nature of any such assessments. Meetings of a committee to
take final action on behalf of the board or make recommendations to the board
regarding the association budget are subject to the provisions of this
paragraph. Meetings of a committee that does not take final action on behalf of
the board or make recommendations to the board regarding the association budget
are subject to the provisions of this section, unless those meetings are
exempted from this section by the bylaws of the association. Notwithstanding any
other law, the requirement that board meetings and committee meetings be open to
the unit owners is inapplicable to meetings between the board or a committee and
the association's attorney, with respect to proposed or pending litigation, when
the meeting is held for the purpose of seeking or rendering legal advice.
(d) Unit owner meetings.--
1. There shall be an annual meeting of the unit owners. Unless the
bylaws provide otherwise, a vacancy on the board caused by the expiration of a
director's term shall be filled by electing a new board member, and the election
shall be by secret ballot; however, if the number of vacancies equals or exceeds
the number of candidates, no election is required. If there is no provision in
the bylaws for terms of the members of the board, the terms of all members of
the board shall expire upon the election of their successors at the annual
meeting. Any unit owner desiring to be a candidate for board membership shall
comply with subparagraph 3. A person who has been convicted of any felony by any
court of record in the United States and who has not had his or her right to
vote restored pursuant to law in the jurisdiction of his or her residence is not
eligible for board membership. The validity of an action by the board is not
affected if it is later determined that a member of the board is ineligible for
board membership due to having been convicted of a felony.
2. The bylaws shall provide the method of calling meetings of unit
owners, including annual meetings. Written notice, which notice must include an
agenda, shall be mailed, hand delivered, or electronically transmitted to each
unit owner at least 14 days prior to the annual meeting and shall be posted in a
conspicuous place on the condominium property at least 14 continuous days
preceding the annual meeting. Upon notice to the unit owners, the board shall by
duly adopted rule designate a specific location on the condominium property or
association property upon which all notices of unit owner meetings shall be
posted; however, if there is no condominium property or association property
upon which notices can be posted, this requirement does not apply. In lieu of or
in addition to the physical posting of notice of any meeting of the unit owners
on the condominium property, the association may, by reasonable rule, adopt a
procedure for conspicuously posting and repeatedly broadcasting the notice and
the agenda on a closed-circuit cable television system serving the condominium
association. However, if broadcast notice is used in lieu of a notice posted
physically on the condominium property, the notice and agenda must be broadcast
at least four times every broadcast hour of each day that a posted notice is
otherwise required under this section. When broadcast notice is provided, the
notice and agenda must be broadcast in a manner and for a sufficient continuous
length of time so as to allow an average reader to observe the notice and read
and comprehend the entire content of the notice and the agenda. Unless a unit
owner waives in writing the right to receive notice of the annual meeting, such
notice shall be hand delivered, mailed, or electronically transmitted to each
unit owner. Notice for meetings and notice for all other purposes shall be
mailed to each unit owner at the address last furnished to the association by
the unit owner, or hand delivered to each unit owner. However, if a unit is
owned by more than one person, the association shall provide notice, for
meetings and all other purposes, to that one address which the developer
initially identifies for that purpose and thereafter as one or more of the
owners of the unit shall so advise the association in writing, or if no address
is given or the owners of the unit do not agree, to the address provided on the
deed of record. An officer of the association, or the manager or other person
providing notice of the association meeting, shall provide an affidavit or
United States Postal Service certificate of mailing, to be included in the
official records of the association affirming that the notice was mailed or hand
delivered, in accordance with this provision.
3. The members of the board shall be elected by written ballot or
voting machine. Proxies shall in no event be used in electing the board, either
in general elections or elections to fill vacancies caused by recall,
resignation, or otherwise, unless otherwise provided in this chapter. Not less
than 60 days before a scheduled election, the association shall mail, deliver,
or electronically transmit, whether by separate association mailing or included
in another association mailing, delivery, or transmission, including regularly
published newsletters, to each unit owner entitled to a vote, a first notice of
the date of the election. Any unit owner or other eligible person desiring to be
a candidate for the board must give written notice to the association not less
than 40 days before a scheduled election. Together with the written notice and
agenda as set forth in subparagraph 2., the association shall mail, deliver, or
electronically transmit a second notice of the election to all unit owners
entitled to vote therein, together with a ballot which shall list all
candidates. Upon request of a candidate, the association shall include an
information sheet, no larger than 81/2
inches by 11 inches, which must be furnished by the candidate not less than 35
days before the election, to be included with the mailing, delivery, or
transmission of the ballot, with the costs of mailing, delivery, or electronic
transmission and copying to be borne by the association. The association is not
liable for the contents of the information sheets prepared by the candidates. In
order to reduce costs, the association may print or duplicate the information
sheets on both sides of the paper. The division shall by rule establish voting
procedures consistent with the provisions contained herein, including rules
establishing procedures for giving notice by electronic transmission and rules
providing for the secrecy of ballots. Elections shall be decided by a plurality
of those ballots cast. There shall be no quorum requirement; however, at least
20 percent of the eligible voters must cast a ballot in order to have a valid
election of members of the board. No unit owner shall permit any other person to
vote his or her ballot, and any such ballots improperly cast shall be deemed
invalid, provided any unit owner who violates this provision may be fined by the
association in accordance with s. 718.303. A unit owner who needs assistance in
casting the ballot for the reasons stated in s. 101.051 may obtain assistance in
casting the ballot. The regular election shall occur on the date of the annual
meeting. The provisions of this subparagraph shall not apply to timeshare
condominium associations. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subparagraph,
an election is not required unless more candidates file notices of intent to run
or are nominated than board vacancies exist.
4. Any approval by unit owners called for by this chapter or the
applicable declaration or bylaws, including, but not limited to, the approval
requirement in s. 718.111(8), shall be made at a duly noticed meeting of unit
owners and shall be subject to all requirements of this chapter or the
applicable condominium documents relating to unit owner decisionmaking, except
that unit owners may take action by written agreement, without meetings, on
matters for which action by written agreement without meetings is expressly
allowed by the applicable bylaws or declaration or any statute that provides for
5. Unit owners may waive notice of specific meetings if allowed by
the applicable bylaws or declaration or any statute. If authorized by the
bylaws, notice of meetings of the board of administration, unit owner meetings,
except unit owner meetings called to recall board members under paragraph (j),
and committee meetings may be given by electronic transmission to unit owners
who consent to receive notice by electronic transmission.
6. Unit owners shall have the right to participate in meetings of
unit owners with reference to all designated agenda items. However, the
association may adopt reasonable rules governing the frequency, duration, and
manner of unit owner participation.
7. Any unit owner may tape record or videotape a meeting of the
unit owners subject to reasonable rules adopted by the division.
8. Unless otherwise provided in the bylaws, any vacancy occurring
on the board before the expiration of a term may be filled by the affirmative
vote of the majority of the remaining directors, even if the remaining directors
constitute less than a quorum, or by the sole remaining director. In the
alternative, a board may hold an election to fill the vacancy, in which case the
election procedures must conform to the requirements of subparagraph 3. unless
the association has opted out of the statutory election process, in which case
the bylaws of the association control. Unless otherwise provided in the bylaws,
a board member appointed or elected under this section shall fill the vacancy
for the unexpired term of the seat being filled. Filling vacancies created by
recall is governed by paragraph (j) and rules adopted by the division.
Notwithstanding subparagraphs (b)2. and (d)3., an association may, by the
affirmative vote of a majority of the total voting interests, provide for
different voting and election procedures in its bylaws, which vote may be by a
proxy specifically delineating the different voting and election procedures. The
different voting and election procedures may provide for elections to be
conducted by limited or general proxy.
(e) Budget meeting.--
1. Any meeting at which a proposed annual budget of an association
will be considered by the board or unit owners shall be open to all unit owners.
At least 14 days prior to such a meeting, the board shall hand deliver to each
unit owner, mail to each unit owner at the address last furnished to the
association by the unit owner, or electronically transmit to the location
furnished by the unit owner for that purpose a notice of such meeting and a copy
of the proposed annual budget. An officer or manager of the association, or
other person providing notice of such meeting, shall execute an affidavit
evidencing compliance with such notice requirement, and such affidavit shall be
filed among the official records of the association.
2.a. If a board adopts in any fiscal year an annual budget which
requires assessments against unit owners which exceed 115 percent of assessments
for the preceding fiscal year, the board shall conduct a special meeting of the
unit owners to consider a substitute budget if the board receives, within 21
days after adoption of the annual budget, a written request for a special
meeting from at least 10 percent of all voting interests. The special meeting
shall be conducted within 60 days after adoption of the annual budget. At least
14 days prior to such special meeting, the board shall hand deliver to each unit
owner, or mail to each unit owner at the address last furnished to the
association, a notice of the meeting. An officer or manager of the association,
or other person providing notice of such meeting shall execute an affidavit
evidencing compliance with this notice requirement, and such affidavit shall be
filed among the official records of the association. Unit owners may consider
and adopt a substitute budget at the special meeting. A substitute budget is
adopted if approved by a majority of all voting interests unless the bylaws
require adoption by a greater percentage of voting interests. If there is not a
quorum at the special meeting or a substitute budget is not adopted, the annual
budget previously adopted by the board shall take effect as scheduled.
b. Any determination of whether assessments exceed 115 percent of
assessments for the prior fiscal year shall exclude any authorized provision for
reasonable reserves for repair or replacement of the condominium property,
anticipated expenses of the association which the board does not expect to be
incurred on a regular or annual basis, or assessments for betterments to the
c. If the developer controls the board, assessments shall not
exceed 115 percent of assessments for the prior fiscal year unless approved by a
majority of all voting interests.
(f) Annual budget.--
1. The proposed annual budget of common expenses shall be detailed
and shall show the amounts budgeted by accounts and expense classifications,
including, if applicable, but not limited to, those expenses listed in s.
718.504(21). A multicondominium association shall adopt a separate budget of
common expenses for each condominium the association operates and shall adopt a
separate budget of common expenses for the association. In addition, if the
association maintains limited common elements with the cost to be shared only by
those entitled to use the limited common elements as provided for in s.
718.113(1), the budget or a schedule attached thereto shall show amounts
budgeted therefor. If, after turnover of control of the association to the unit
owners, any of the expenses listed in s. 718.504(21) are not applicable, they
need not be listed.
2. In addition to annual operating expenses, the budget shall
include reserve accounts for capital expenditures and deferred maintenance.
These accounts shall include, but are not limited to, roof replacement, building
painting, and pavement resurfacing, regardless of the amount of deferred
maintenance expense or replacement cost, and for any other item for which the
deferred maintenance expense or replacement cost exceeds $10,000. The amount to
be reserved shall be computed by means of a formula which is based upon
estimated remaining useful life and estimated replacement cost or deferred
maintenance expense of each reserve item. The association may adjust replacement
reserve assessments annually to take into account any changes in estimates or
extension of the useful life of a reserve item caused by deferred maintenance.
This subsection does not apply to an adopted budget in which the members of an
association have determined, by a majority vote at a duly called meeting of the
association, to provide no reserves or less reserves than required by this
subsection. However, prior to turnover of control of an association by a
developer to unit owners other than a developer pursuant to s. 718.301, the
developer may vote to waive the reserves or reduce the funding of reserves for
the first 2 fiscal years of the association's operation, beginning with the
fiscal year in which the initial declaration is recorded, after which time
reserves may be waived or reduced only upon the vote of a majority of all
nondeveloper voting interests voting in person or by limited proxy at a duly
called meeting of the association. If a meeting of the unit owners has been
called to determine whether to waive or reduce the funding of reserves, and no
such result is achieved or a quorum is not attained, the reserves as included in
the budget shall go into effect. After the turnover, the developer may vote its
voting interest to waive or reduce the funding of reserves.
3. Reserve funds and any interest accruing thereon shall remain in
the reserve account or accounts, and shall be used only for authorized reserve
expenditures unless their use for other purposes is approved in advance by a
majority vote at a duly called meeting of the association. Prior to turnover of
control of an association by a developer to unit owners other than the developer
pursuant to s. 718.301, the developer-controlled association shall not vote to
use reserves for purposes other than that for which they were intended without
the approval of a majority of all nondeveloper voting interests, voting in
person or by limited proxy at a duly called meeting of the association.
4. The only voting interests which are eligible to vote on
questions that involve waiving or reducing the funding of reserves, or using
existing reserve funds for purposes other than purposes for which the reserves
were intended, are the voting interests of the units subject to assessment to
fund the reserves in question.
(g) Assessments.--The manner of collecting from the unit
owners their shares of the common expenses shall be stated in the bylaws.
Assessments shall be made against units not less frequently than quarterly in an
amount which is not less than that required to provide funds in advance for
payment of all of the anticipated current operating expenses and for all of the
unpaid operating expenses previously incurred. Nothing in this paragraph shall
preclude the right of an association to accelerate assessments of an owner
delinquent in payment of common expenses. Accelerated assessments shall be due
and payable on the date the claim of lien is filed. Such accelerated assessments
shall include the amounts due for the remainder of the budget year in which the
claim of lien was filed.
(h) Amendment of bylaws.--
1. The method by which the bylaws may be amended consistent with
the provisions of this chapter shall be stated. If the bylaws fail to provide a
method of amendment, the bylaws may be amended if the amendment is approved by
the owners of not less than two-thirds of the voting interests.
2. No bylaw shall be revised or amended by reference to its title
or number only. Proposals to amend existing bylaws shall contain the full text
of the bylaws to be amended; new words shall be inserted in the text underlined,
and words to be deleted shall be lined through with hyphens. However, if the
proposed change is so extensive that this procedure would hinder, rather than
assist, the understanding of the proposed amendment, it is not necessary to use
underlining and hyphens as indicators of words added or deleted, but, instead, a
notation must be inserted immediately preceding the proposed amendment in
substantially the following language: "Substantial rewording of bylaw. See
bylaw _____ for present text."
3. Nonmaterial errors or omissions in the bylaw process will not
invalidate an otherwise properly promulgated amendment.
(i) Transfer fees.--No charge shall be made by the
association or any body thereof in connection with the sale, mortgage, lease,
sublease, or other transfer of a unit unless the association is required to
approve such transfer and a fee for such approval is provided for in the
declaration, articles, or bylaws. Any such fee may be preset, but in no event
may such fee exceed $100 per applicant other than husband/wife or
parent/dependent child, which are considered one applicant. However, if the
lease or sublease is a renewal of a lease or sublease with the same lessee or
sublessee, no charge shall be made. The foregoing notwithstanding, an
association may, if the authority to do so appears in the declaration or bylaws,
require that a prospective lessee place a security deposit, in an amount not to
exceed the equivalent of 1 month's rent, into an escrow account maintained by
the association. The security deposit shall protect against damages to the
common elements or association property. Payment of interest, claims against the
deposit, refunds, and disputes under this paragraph shall be handled in the same
fashion as provided in part II of chapter 83.
(j) Recall of board members.--Subject to the provisions of
s. 718.301, any member of the board of administration may be recalled and
removed from office with or without cause by the vote or agreement in writing by
a majority of all the voting interests. A special meeting of the unit owners to
recall a member or members of the board of administration may be called by 10
percent of the voting interests giving notice of the meeting as required for a
meeting of unit owners, and the notice shall state the purpose of the meeting.
Electronic transmission may not be used as a method of giving notice of a
meeting called in whole or in part for this purpose.
1. If the recall is approved by a majority of all voting interests
by a vote at a meeting, the recall will be effective as provided herein. The
board shall duly notice and hold a board meeting within 5 full business days of
the adjournment of the unit owner meeting to recall one or more board members.
At the meeting, the board shall either certify the recall, in which case such
member or members shall be recalled effective immediately and shall turn over to
the board within 5 full business days any and all records and property of the
association in their possession, or shall proceed as set forth in subparagraph
2. If the proposed recall is by an agreement in writing by a
majority of all voting interests, the agreement in writing or a copy thereof
shall be served on the association by certified mail or by personal service in
the manner authorized by chapter 48 and the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure.
The board of administration shall duly notice and hold a meeting of the board
within 5 full business days after receipt of the agreement in writing. At the
meeting, the board shall either certify the written agreement to recall a member
or members of the board, in which case such member or members shall be recalled
effective immediately and shall turn over to the board within 5 full business
days any and all records and property of the association in their possession, or
proceed as described in subparagraph 3.
3. If the board determines not to certify the written agreement to
recall a member or members of the board, or does not certify the recall by a
vote at a meeting, the board shall, within 5 full business days after the
meeting, file with the division a petition for arbitration pursuant to the
procedures in s. 718.1255. For the purposes of this section, the unit owners who
voted at the meeting or who executed the agreement in writing shall constitute
one party under the petition for arbitration. If the arbitrator certifies the
recall as to any member or members of the board, the recall will be effective
upon mailing of the final order of arbitration to the association. If the
association fails to comply with the order of the arbitrator, the division may
take action pursuant to s. 718.501. Any member or members so recalled shall
deliver to the board any and all records of the association in their possession
within 5 full business days of the effective date of the recall.
4. If the board fails to duly notice and hold a board meeting
within 5 full business days of service of an agreement in writing or within 5
full business days of the adjournment of the unit owner recall meeting, the
recall shall be deemed effective and the board members so recalled shall
immediately turn over to the board any and all records and property of the
5. If a vacancy occurs on the board as a result of a recall and
less than a majority of the board members are removed, the vacancy may be filled
by the affirmative vote of a majority of the remaining directors,
notwithstanding any provision to the contrary contained in this subsection. If
vacancies occur on the board as a result of a recall and a majority or more of
the board members are removed, the vacancies shall be filled in accordance with
procedural rules to be adopted by the division, which rules need not be
consistent with this subsection. The rules must provide procedures governing the
conduct of the recall election as well as the operation of the association
during the period after a recall but prior to the recall election.
(k) Arbitration.--There shall be a provision for mandatory
nonbinding arbitration as provided for in s. 718.1255.
(l) Certificate of compliance.--There shall be a provision
that a certificate of compliance from a licensed electrical contractor or
electrician may be accepted by the association's board as evidence of compliance
of the condominium units with the applicable fire and life safety code.
Notwithstanding the provisions of chapter 633 or of any other code, statute,
ordinance, administrative rule, or regulation, or any interpretation of the
foregoing, an association, condominium, or unit owner is not obligated to
retrofit the common elements or units of a residential condominium with a fire
sprinkler system or other engineered lifesafety system in a building that has
been certified for occupancy by the applicable governmental entity, if the unit
owners have voted to forego such retrofitting and engineered lifesafety system
by the affirmative vote of two-thirds of all voting interests in the affected
condominium. However, a condominium association may not vote to forego the
retrofitting with a fire sprinkler system of common areas in a high-rise
building. For purposes of this subsection, the term "high-rise
building" means a building that is greater than 75 feet in height where the
building height is measured from the lowest level of fire department access to
the floor of the highest occupiable story. For purposes of this subsection, the
term "common areas" means any enclosed hallway, corridor, lobby,
stairwell, or entryway. In no event shall the local authority having
jurisdiction require completion of retrofitting of common areas with a sprinkler
system before the end of 2014.
1. A vote to forego retrofitting may be obtained by limited proxy
or by a ballot personally cast at a duly called membership meeting, or by
execution of a written consent by the member, and shall be effective upon the
recording of a certificate attesting to such vote in the public records of the
county where the condominium is located. The association shall mail, hand
deliver, or electronically transmit to each unit owner written notice at least
14 days prior to such membership meeting in which the vote to forego
retrofitting of the required fire sprinkler system is to take place. Within 30
days after the association's opt-out vote, notice of the results of the opt-out
vote shall be mailed, hand delivered, or electronically transmitted to all unit
owners. Evidence of compliance with this 30-day notice shall be made by an
affidavit executed by the person providing the notice and filed among the
official records of the association. After such notice is provided to each
owner, a copy of such notice shall be provided by the current owner to a new
owner prior to closing and shall be provided by a unit owner to a renter prior
to signing a lease.
2. As part of the information collected annually from
condominiums, the division shall require condominium associations to report the
membership vote and recording of a certificate under this subsection and, if
retrofitting has been undertaken, the per-unit cost of such work. The division
shall annually report to the Division of State Fire Marshal of the Department of
Financial Services the number of condominiums that have elected to forego
(m) Common elements; limited power to convey.--
1. With respect to condominiums created on or after October 1,
1994, the bylaws shall include a provision granting the association a limited
power to convey a portion of the common elements to a condemning authority for
the purpose of providing utility easements, right-of-way expansion, or other
public purposes, whether negotiated or as a result of eminent domain
2. In any case where the bylaws are silent as to the association's
power to convey common elements as described in subparagraph 1., the bylaws
shall be deemed to include the provision described in subparagraph 1.
(3) OPTIONAL PROVISIONS.--The bylaws as originally recorded or as
amended under the procedures provided therein may provide for the following:
(a) A method of adopting and amending administrative rules and
regulations governing the details of the operation and use of the common
(b) Restrictions on and requirements for the use, maintenance, and
appearance of the units and the use of the common elements.
(c) Provisions for giving notice by electronic transmission in a
manner authorized by law of meetings of the board of directors and committees
and of annual and special meetings of the members.
(d) Other provisions which are not inconsistent with this chapter
or with the declaration, as may be desired.
1Note.--Section 4, ch. 2004-345, purported to amend
paragraph (2)(d), but did not publish the amended paragraph. Absent affirmative
evidence of legislative intent to repeal it, paragraph (2)(d) is published here,
pending clarification by the Legislature.
Failure to fill vacancies on board of administration sufficient to constitute
a quorum; appointment of receiver upon petition of unit owner.--
If an association fails to fill vacancies on the board of administration
sufficient to constitute a quorum in accordance with the bylaws, any unit
owner may apply to the circuit court within whose jurisdiction the condominium
lies for the appointment of a receiver to manage the affairs of the association.
At least 30 days prior to applying to the circuit court, the unit owner
shall mail to the association and post in a conspicuous place on the condominium
property a notice describing the intended action, giving the association
the opportunity to fill the vacancies. If during such time the association
fails to fill the vacancies, the unit owner may proceed with the petition.
If a receiver is appointed, the association shall be responsible for the
salary of the receiver, court costs, and attorney's fees. The receiver
shall have all powers and duties of a duly constituted board of administration
and shall serve until the association fills vacancies on the board sufficient
to constitute a quorum.
Maintenance; limitation upon improvement; display of flag; hurricane shutters.--
(1) Maintenance of the common elements is the responsibility
of the association. The declaration may provide that certain limited common
elements shall be maintained by those entitled to use the limited common
elements or that the association shall provide the maintenance, either
as a common expense or with the cost shared only by those entitled to use
the limited common elements. If the maintenance is to be by the association
at the expense of only those entitled to use the limited common elements,
the declaration shall describe in detail the method of apportioning such
costs among those entitled to use the limited common elements, and the
association may use the provisions of s. 718.116 to enforce payment of
the shares of such costs by the unit owners entitled to use the limited
(2)(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, there shall
be no material alteration or substantial additions to the common elements
or to real property which is association property, except in a manner provided
in the declaration. If the declaration does not specify the procedure for
approval of material alterations or substantial additions, 75 percent of
the total voting interests of the association must approve the alterations
(b) There shall not be any material alteration of, or substantial
addition to, the common elements of any condominium operated by a multicondominium
association unless approved in the manner provided in the declaration of
the affected condominium or condominiums. If a declaration does not specify
a procedure for approving such an alteration or addition, the approval
of 75 percent of the total voting interests of each affected condominium
is required. This subsection does not prohibit a provision in any declaration,
articles of incorporation, or bylaws requiring the approval of unit owners
in any condominium operated by the same association or requiring board
approval before a material alteration or substantial addition to the common
elements is permitted.
(c) There shall not be any material alteration or substantial
addition made to association real property operated by a multicondominium
association, except as provided in the declaration, articles of incorporation,
or bylaws. If the declaration, articles of incorporation, or bylaws do
not specify the procedure for approving an alteration or addition to association
real property, the approval of 75 percent of the total voting interests
of the association is required.
(3) A unit owner shall not do anything within his or her unit
or on the common elements which would adversely affect the safety or soundness
of the common elements or any portion of the association property or condominium
property which is to be maintained by the association.
(4) Any unit owner may display one portable, removable United
States flag in a respectful way regardless of any declaration rules or
requirements dealing with flags or decorations.
(5) Each board of administration shall adopt hurricane shutter
specifications for each building within each condominium operated by the
association which shall include color, style, and other factors deemed
relevant by the board. All specifications adopted by the board shall comply
with the applicable building code. Notwithstanding any provision to the
contrary in the condominium documents, if approval is required by the documents,
a board shall not refuse to approve the installation or replacement of
hurricane shutters conforming to the specifications adopted by the board.
The board may, subject to the provisions of s. 718.3026, and the approval
of a majority of voting interests of the condominium, install hurricane
shutters and may maintain, repair, or replace such approved hurricane shutters,
whether on or within common elements, limited common elements, units, or
association property. However, where laminated glass or window film architecturally
designed to function as hurricane protection which complies with the applicable
building code has been installed, the board may not install hurricane shutters.
The board may operate shutters installed pursuant to this subsection without
permission of the unit owners only where such operation is necessary to
preserve and protect the condominium property and association property.
The installation, replacement, operation, repair, and maintenance of such
shutters in accordance with the procedures set forth herein shall not be
deemed a material alteration to the common elements or association property
within the meaning of this section.
An association has the power to enter into agreements, to acquire leaseholds,
memberships, and other possessory or use interests in lands or facilities
such as country clubs, golf courses, marinas, and other recreational facilities.
It has this power whether or not the lands or facilities are contiguous
to the lands of the condominium, if they are intended to provide enjoyment,
recreation, or other use or benefit to the unit owners. All of these leaseholds,
memberships, and other possessory or use interests existing or created
at the time of recording the declaration must be stated and fully described
in the declaration. Subsequent to the recording of the declaration, the
association may not acquire or enter into agreements acquiring these leaseholds,
memberships, or other possessory or use interests except as authorized
by the declaration. The declaration may provide that the rental, membership
fees, operations, replacements, and other expenses are common expenses
and may impose covenants and restrictions concerning their use and may
contain other provisions not inconsistent with this chapter. A condominium
association may conduct bingo games as provided in s. 849.0931.
Common expenses and common surplus.--
(1)(a) Common expenses include the expenses of the operation,
maintenance, repair, replacement, or protection of the common elements
and association property, costs of carrying out the powers and duties of
the association, and any other expense, whether or not included in the
foregoing, designated as common expense by this chapter, the declaration,
the documents creating the association, or the bylaws. Common expenses
also include reasonable transportation services, insurance for directors
and officers, road maintenance and operation expenses, in-house communications,
and security services, which are reasonably related to the general benefit
of the unit owners even if such expenses do not attach to the common elements
or property of the condominium. However, such common expenses must either
have been services or items provided on or after the date control of the
association is transferred from the developer to the unit owners or must
be services or items provided for in the condominium documents or bylaws.
(b) The common expenses of a condominium within a multicondominium
are the common expenses directly attributable to the operation of that
condominium. The common expenses of a multicondominium association do not
include the common expenses directly attributable to the operation of any
specific condominium or condominiums within the multicondominium.
(c) The common expenses of a multicondominium association may
include categories of expenses related to the property or common elements
within a specific condominium in the multicondominium if such property
or common elements are areas in which all members of the multicondominium
association have use rights or from which all members receive tangible
economic benefits. Such common expenses of the association shall be identified
in the declaration or bylaws of each condominium within the multicondominium
(d) If so provided in the declaration, the cost of a master antenna
television system or duly franchised cable television service obtained
pursuant to a bulk contract shall be deemed a common expense. If the declaration
does not provide for the cost of a master antenna television system or
duly franchised cable television service obtained under a bulk contract
as a common expense, the board may enter into such a contract, and the
cost of the service will be a common expense but allocated on a per-unit
basis rather than a percentage basis if the declaration provides for other
than an equal sharing of common expenses, and any contract entered into
before July 1, 1998, in which the cost of the service is not equally divided
among all unit owners, may be changed by vote of a majority of the voting
interests present at a regular or special meeting of the association, to
allocate the cost equally among all units. The contract shall be for a
term of not less than 2 years.
1. Any contract made by the board after the effective date hereof
for a community antenna system or duly franchised cable television service
may be canceled by a majority of the voting interests present at the next
regular or special meeting of the association. Any member may make a motion
to cancel said contract, but if no motion is made or if such motion fails
to obtain the required majority at the next regular or special meeting,
whichever is sooner, following the making of the contract, then such contract
shall be deemed ratified for the term therein expressed.
2. Any such contract shall provide, and shall be deemed to provide
if not expressly set forth, that any hearing-impaired or legally blind
unit owner who does not occupy the unit with a non-hearing-impaired or
sighted person, or any unit owner receiving supplemental security income
under Title XVI of the Social Security Act or food stamps as administered
by the Department of Children and Family Services pursuant to s. 414.31,
may discontinue the service without incurring disconnect fees, penalties,
or subsequent service charges, and, as to such units, the owners shall
not be required to pay any common expenses charge related to such service.
If less than all members of an association share the expenses of cable
television, the expense shall be shared equally by all participating unit
owners. The association may use the provisions of s. 718.116 to enforce
payment of the shares of such costs by the unit owners receiving cable
(e) The expense of installation, replacement, operation, repair,
and maintenance of hurricane shutters by the board pursuant to s. 718.113(5)
shall constitute a common expense as defined herein and shall be collected
as provided in this section. Notwithstanding the provisions of s. 718.116(9),
a unit owner who has previously installed hurricane shutters in accordance
with s. 718.113(5) or laminated glass architecturally designed to function
as hurricane protection which complies with the applicable building code
shall receive a credit equal to the pro rata portion of the assessed installation
cost assigned to each unit. However, such unit owner shall remain responsible
for the pro rata share of expenses for hurricane shutters installed on
common elements and association property by the board pursuant to s. 718.113(5),
and shall remain responsible for a pro rata share of the expense of the
replacement, operation, repair, and maintenance of such shutters.
(f) If any unpaid share of common expenses or assessments is
extinguished by foreclosure of a superior lien or by a deed in lieu of
foreclosure thereof, the unpaid share of common expenses or assessments
are common expenses collectible from all the unit owners in the condominium
in which the unit is located.
(2) Except as otherwise provided by this chapter, funds for payment
of the common expenses of a condominium shall be collected by assessments
against the units in that condominium in the proportions or percentages
provided in that condominium's declaration. In a residential condominium,
or mixed-use condominium created after January 1, 1996, each unit's share
of the common expenses of the condominium and common surplus of the condominium
shall be the same as the unit's appurtenant ownership interest in the common
(3) Common surplus is owned by unit owners in the same shares
as their ownership interest in the common elements.
(4)(a) Funds for payment of the common expenses of a condominium
within a multicondominium shall be collected as provided in subsection
(2). Common expenses of a multicondominium association shall be funded
by assessments against all unit owners in the association in the proportion
or percentage set forth in the declaration as required by s. 718.104(4)(h)
or s. 718.110(12), as applicable.
(b) In a multicondominium association, the total common surplus
owned by a unit owner consists of that owner's share of the common surplus
of the association plus that owner's share of the common surplus of the
condominium in which the owner's unit is located, in the proportion or
percentage set forth in the declaration as required by s. 718.104(4)(h)
or s. 718.110(12), as applicable.
Assessments; liability; lien and priority; interest; collection.--
(1)(a) A unit owner, regardless of how his or her title has been
acquired, including by purchase at a foreclosure sale or by deed in lieu
of foreclosure, is liable for all assessments which come due while he or
she is the unit owner. Additionally, a unit owner is jointly and severally
liable with the previous owner for all unpaid assessments that came due
up to the time of transfer of title. This liability is without prejudice
to any right the owner may have to recover from the previous owner the
amounts paid by the owner.
(b) The liability of a first mortgagee or its successor or assignees
who acquire title to a unit by foreclosure or by deed in lieu of foreclosure
for the unpaid assessments that became due prior to the mortgagee's acquisition
of title is limited to the lesser of:
1. The unit's unpaid common expenses and regular periodic assessments
which accrued or came due during the 6 months immediately preceding the
acquisition of title and for which payment in full has not been received
by the association; or
2. One percent of the original mortgage debt. The provisions
of this paragraph apply only if the first mortgagee joined the association
as a defendant in the foreclosure action. Joinder of the association is
not required if, on the date the complaint is filed, the association was
dissolved or did not maintain an office or agent for service of process
at a location which was known to or reasonably discoverable by the mortgagee.
(c) The person acquiring title shall pay the amount owed to the
association within 30 days after transfer of title. Failure to pay the
full amount when due shall entitle the association to record a claim of
lien against the parcel and proceed in the same manner as provided in this
section for the collection of unpaid assessments.
(d) With respect to each timeshare unit, each owner of a timeshare
estate therein is jointly and severally liable for the payment of all assessments
and other charges levied against or with respect to that unit pursuant
to the declaration or bylaws, except to the extent that the declaration
or bylaws may provide to the contrary.
(e) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (b), a first
mortgagee or its successor or assignees who acquire title to a condominium
unit as a result of the foreclosure of the mortgage or by deed in lieu
of foreclosure of the mortgage shall be exempt from liability for all unpaid
assessments attributable to the parcel or chargeable to the previous owner
which came due prior to acquisition of title if the first mortgage was
recorded prior to April 1, 1992. If, however, the first mortgage was recorded
on or after April 1, 1992, or on the date the mortgage was recorded, the
declaration included language incorporating by reference future amendments
to this chapter, the provisions of paragraph (b) shall apply.
(f) The provisions of this subsection are intended to clarify
existing law, and shall not be available in any case where the unpaid assessments
sought to be recovered by the association are secured by a lien recorded
prior to the recording of the mortgage. Notwithstanding the provisions
of chapter 48, the association shall be a proper party to intervene in
any foreclosure proceeding to seek equitable relief.
(g) For purposes of this subsection, the term "successor or assignee"
as used with respect to a first mortgagee includes only a subsequent holder
of the first mortgage.
(2) The liability for assessments may not be avoided by waiver
of the use or enjoyment of any common element or by abandonment of the
unit for which the assessments are made.
(3) Assessments and installments on them which are not paid when
due bear interest at the rate provided in the declaration, from the due
date until paid. This rate may not exceed the rate allowed by law, and,
if no rate is provided in the declaration, interest shall accrue at the
rate of 18 percent per year. Also, if the declaration or bylaws so provide,
the association may charge an administrative late fee in addition to such
interest, in an amount not to exceed the greater of $25 or 5 percent of
each installment of the assessment for each delinquent installment that
the payment is late. Any payment received by an association shall be applied
first to any interest accrued by the association, then to any administrative
late fee, then to any costs and reasonable attorney's fees incurred in
collection, and then to the delinquent assessment. The foregoing shall
be applicable notwithstanding any restrictive endorsement, designation,
or instruction placed on or accompanying a payment. A late fee shall not
be subject to the provisions in chapter 687 or s. 718.303(3).
(4) If the association is authorized by the declaration or bylaws
to approve or disapprove a proposed lease of a unit, the grounds for disapproval
may include, but are not limited to, a unit owner being delinquent in the
payment of an assessment at the time approval is sought.
(5)(a) The association has a lien on each condominium parcel
to secure the payment of assessments. Except as otherwise provided in subsection
(1) and as set forth below, the lien is effective from and shall relate
back to the recording of the original declaration of condominium, or, in
the case of lien on a parcel located in a phase condominium, the last to
occur of the recording of the original declaration or amendment thereto
creating the parcel. However, as to first mortgages of record, the lien
is effective from and after recording of a claim of lien in the public
records of the county in which the condominium parcel is located. Nothing
in this subsection shall be construed to bestow upon any lien, mortgage,
or certified judgment of record on April 1, 1992, including the lien for
unpaid assessments created herein, a priority which, by law, the lien,
mortgage, or judgment did not have before that date.
(b) To be valid, a claim of lien must state the description of
the condominium parcel, the name of the record owner, the name and address
of the association, the amount due, and the due dates. It must be executed
and acknowledged by an officer or authorized agent of the association.
No such lien shall be effective longer than 1 year after the claim of lien
was recorded unless, within that time, an action to enforce the lien is
commenced. The 1-year period shall automatically be extended for any length
of time during which the association is prevented from filing a foreclosure
action by an automatic stay resulting from a bankruptcy petition filed
by the parcel owner or any other person claiming an interest in the parcel.
The claim of lien shall secure all unpaid assessments which are due and
which may accrue subsequent to the recording of the claim of lien and prior
to the entry of a certificate of title, as well as interest and all reasonable
costs and attorney's fees incurred by the association incident to the collection
process. Upon payment in full, the person making the payment is entitled
to a satisfaction of the lien.
(c) By recording a notice in substantially the following form,
a unit owner or the unit owner's agent or attorney may require the association
to enforce a recorded claim of lien against his or her condominium parcel:
NOTICE OF CONTEST OF LIEN
TO: (Name and address of association) You are notified
that the undersigned contests the claim of lien filed by you on _____,
(year) , and recorded in Official Records Book _____ at Page _____, of
the public records of _____ County, Florida, and that the time within which
you may file suit to enforce your lien is limited to 90 days from the date
of service of this notice. Executed this _____ day of _____, (year)
Signed: (Owner or Attorney)
After notice of contest of lien has been recorded, the clerk of the
circuit court shall mail a copy of the recorded notice to the association
by certified mail, return receipt requested, at the address shown in the
claim of lien or most recent amendment to it and shall certify to the service
on the face of the notice. Service is complete upon mailing. After service,
the association has 90 days in which to file an action to enforce the lien;
and, if the action is not filed within the 90-day period, the lien is void.
However, the 90-day period shall be extended for any length of time that
the association is prevented from filing its action because of an automatic
stay resulting from the filing of a bankruptcy petition by the unit owner
or by any other person claiming an interest in the parcel.
(6)(a) The association may bring an action in its name to foreclose
a lien for assessments in the manner a mortgage of real property is foreclosed
and may also bring an action to recover a money judgment for the unpaid
assessments without waiving any claim of lien. The association is entitled
to recover its reasonable attorney's fees incurred in either a lien foreclosure
action or an action to recover a money judgment for unpaid assessments.
(b) No foreclosure judgment may be entered until at least 30
days after the association gives written notice to the unit owner of its
intention to foreclose its lien to collect the unpaid assessments. If this
notice is not given at least 30 days before the foreclosure action is filed,
and if the unpaid assessments, including those coming due after the claim
of lien is recorded, are paid before the entry of a final judgment of foreclosure,
the association shall not recover attorney's fees or costs. The notice
must be given by delivery of a copy of it to the unit owner or by certified
or registered mail, return receipt requested, addressed to the unit owner
at his or her last known address; and, upon such mailing, the notice shall
be deemed to have been given, and the court shall proceed with the foreclosure
action and may award attorney's fees and costs as permitted by law. The
notice requirements of this subsection are satisfied if the unit owner
records a notice of contest of lien as provided in subsection (5). The
notice requirements of this subsection do not apply if an action to foreclose
a mortgage on the condominium unit is pending before any court; if the
rights of the association would be affected by such foreclosure; and if
actual, constructive, or substitute service of process has been made on
the unit owner.
(c) If the unit owner remains in possession of the unit after
a foreclosure judgment has been entered, the court, in its discretion,
may require the unit owner to pay a reasonable rental for the unit. If
the unit is rented or leased during the pendency of the foreclosure action,
the association is entitled to the appointment of a receiver to collect
the rent. The expenses of the receiver shall be paid by the party which
does not prevail in the foreclosure action.
(d) The association has the power to purchase the condominium
parcel at the foreclosure sale and to hold, lease, mortgage, or convey
(7) A first mortgagee acquiring title to a condominium parcel
as a result of foreclosure, or a deed in lieu of foreclosure, may not,
during the period of its ownership of such parcel, whether or not such
parcel is unoccupied, be excused from the payment of some or all of the
common expenses coming due during the period of such ownership.
(8) Within 15 days after receiving a written request therefor
from a unit owner purchaser, or mortgagee, the association shall provide
a certificate signed by an officer or agent of the association stating
all assessments and other moneys owed to the association by the unit owner
with respect to the condominium parcel. Any person other than the owner
who relies upon such certificate shall be protected thereby. A summary
proceeding pursuant to s. 51.011 may be brought to compel compliance with
this subsection, and in any such action the prevailing party is entitled
to recover reasonable attorney's fees.
(9)(a) A unit owner may not be excused from payment of the unit
owner's share of common expenses unless all other unit owners are likewise
proportionately excluded from payment, except as provided in subsection
(1) and in the following cases:
1. If authorized by the declaration, a developer who is offering
units for sale may elect to be excused from payment of assessments against
those unsold units for a stated period of time after the declaration is
recorded. However, the developer must pay common expenses incurred during
such period which exceed regular periodic assessments against other unit
owners in the same condominium. The stated period must terminate no later
than the first day of the fourth calendar month following the month in
which the first closing occurs of a purchase contract for a unit in that
condominium. If a developer-controlled association has maintained all insurance
coverage required by s. 718.111(11)(a), common expenses incurred during
the stated period resulting from a natural disaster or an act of God occurring
during the stated period, which are not covered by proceeds from insurance
maintained by the association, may be assessed against all unit owners
owning units on the date of such natural disaster or act of God, and their
respective successors and assigns, including the developer with respect
to units owned by the developer. In the event of such an assessment, all
units shall be assessed in accordance with s. 718.115(2).
2. A developer who owns condominium units, and who is offering
the units for sale, may be excused from payment of assessments against
those unsold units for the period of time the developer has guaranteed
to all purchasers or other unit owners in the same condominium that assessments
will not exceed a stated dollar amount and that the developer will pay
any common expenses that exceed the guaranteed amount. Such guarantee may
be stated in the purchase contract, declaration, prospectus, or written
agreement between the developer and a majority of the unit owners other
than the developer and may provide that, after the initial guarantee period,
the developer may extend the guarantee for one or more stated periods.
If a developer-controlled association has maintained all insurance coverage
required by s. 718.111(11)(a), common expenses incurred during a guarantee
period, as a result of a natural disaster or an act of God occurring during
the same guarantee period, which are not covered by the proceeds from such
insurance, may be assessed against all unit owners owning units on the
date of such natural disaster or act of God, and their successors and assigns,
including the developer with respect to units owned by the developer. Any
such assessment shall be in accordance with s. 718.115(2) or (4), as applicable.
(b) If the purchase contract, declaration, prospectus, or written
agreement between the developer and a majority of unit owners other than
the developer provides for the developer to be excused from payment of
assessments under paragraph (a), only regular periodic assessments for
common expenses as provided for in the declaration and prospectus and disclosed
in the estimated operating budget shall be used for payment of common expenses
during any period in which the developer is excused. Accordingly, no funds
which are receivable from unit purchasers or unit owners and payable to
the association, including capital contributions or startup funds collected
from unit purchasers at closing, may be used for payment of such common
(c) If a developer of a multicondominium is excused from payment
of assessments under paragraph (a), the developer's financial obligation
to the multicondominium association during any period in which the developer
is excused from payment of assessments is as follows:
1. The developer shall pay the common expenses of a condominium
affected by a guarantee, including the funding of reserves as provided
in the adopted annual budget of that condominium, which exceed the regular
periodic assessments at the guaranteed level against all other unit owners
within that condominium.
2. The developer shall pay the common expenses of a multicondominium
association, including the funding of reserves as provided in the adopted
annual budget of the association, which are allocated to units within a
condominium affected by a guarantee and which exceed the regular periodic
assessments against all other unit owners within that condominium.
(10) The specific purpose or purposes of any special assessment
approved in accordance with the condominium documents shall be set forth
in a written notice of such assessment sent or delivered to each unit owner.
The funds collected pursuant to a special assessment shall be used only
for the specific purpose or purposes set forth in such notice. However,
upon completion of such specific purpose or purposes, any excess funds
will be considered common surplus, and may, at the discretion of the board,
either be returned to the unit owners or applied as a credit toward future
(1) Unless otherwise provided in the declaration, the condominium
property may be removed from the provisions of this chapter only by consent
of all of the unit owners, evidenced by a recorded instrument to that effect,
and upon the written consent by all of the holders of recorded liens affecting
any of the condominium parcels. When the board of directors intends to
terminate or merge the condominium, or dissolve or merge the association,
the boards shall so notify the division before taking any action to terminate
or merge the condominium or the association. Upon recordation of the instrument
evidencing consent of all of the unit owners to terminate the condominium,
the association within 30 business days shall notify the division of the
termination and the date the document was recorded, the county where the
document was recorded, and the book and page number of the public records
where the document was recorded, and shall provide the division a copy
of the recorded termination notice certified by the clerk.
(2) Notwithstanding any contrary provision in the declaration
or the bylaws, the powers and duties of the directors, or other person
or persons appointed by the court pursuant to subsection (4), after the
commencement of a termination proceeding include, but are not limited to,
the following acts in the name and on behalf of the association:
(a) To employ directors, agents, and attorneys to liquidate or
wind up its affairs.
(b) To continue the conduct of the affairs of the association
insofar as necessary for the disposal or winding up thereof.
(c) To carry out contracts and collect, pay, compromise, and
settle debts and claims for and against the association.
(d) To defend suits brought against the association.
(e) To sue in the name of the association, for all sums due or
owing to the association or to recover any of its property.
(f) To perform any act necessary to maintain, repair, or demolish
unsafe and uninhabitable structures, or other condominium property in compliance
with applicable codes.
(g) To sell at public or private sale, exchange, convey, or otherwise
dispose of all or any part of the assets of the association for an amount
deemed in the best interest of the association, and to execute bills of
sale and deeds of conveyance in the name of the association.
(h) To collect and receive any and all rents, profits, accounts
receivable, income, maintenance fees, special assessments, and insurance
proceeds for the association.
(i) In general, to make contracts and to do any and all things
in the name of the association which may be proper or convenient for the
purposes of winding up, selling, and liquidating the affairs of the association.
(3) Unless the declaration or the bylaws provide otherwise, a
vacancy in the board during a winding up proceeding, resulting from the
resignation or expiration of term of any director, may be filled by a majority
vote of the unit owners.
(4) If, after a natural disaster, the identity of the directors
or their right to hold office is in doubt, or if they are dead or unable
to act, or if they fail or refuse to act, or their whereabouts cannot be
ascertained, any interested person may petition the circuit court to determine
the identity of the directors, or, if determined to be in the best interest
of the unit owners, to appoint a receiver to wind up the affairs of the
association after hearing upon such notice to such persons as the court
may direct. The receiver shall be vested with those powers as are given
to the board of directors pursuant to the declaration and bylaws and subsection
(2) and such others which may be necessary to wind up the affairs of the
association and set forth in the order of appointment. The appointment
of the receiver shall be subject to such bonding requirements as the court
may direct in the order of appointment. The order shall also provide for
the payment of a reasonable fee for the services of the receiver from the
sources identified in the order, which may include rents, profits, incomes,
maintenance fees, or special assessments collected from the condominium
(5) After determining that all known debts and liabilities of
an association in the process of winding up have been paid or adequately
provided for, the board, or other person or persons appointed by the court,
pursuant to subsection (4), shall distribute all the remaining assets in
the manner set forth in subsection (6). If the winding up is by court proceeding
or subject to court supervision, the distribution shall not be made until
after the expiration of any period for the presentation of claims that
has been prescribed by order of the court.
(6) Assets held by an association upon a valid condition requiring
return, transfer, or conveyance, which condition has occurred or will occur,
shall be returned, transferred, or conveyed in accordance with the condition.
The remaining assets of an association shall be distributed as follows:
(a) If the declaration or bylaws provides the manner of disposition
the assets shall be disposed in that manner.
(b) If the declaration or bylaws do not provide the manner of
disposition, the assets shall be distributed among the unit owners in accordance
with their respective rights therein, as set forth in subsection (7).
(7) Unless otherwise provided in the declaration as originally
recorded or as amended pursuant to s. 718.110(5), upon removal of the condominium
property from the provisions of this chapter, the condominium property
is owned by the unit owners in the same shares as each owner previously
owned in the common elements. All liens shall be transferred to the share
in the condominium property attributable to the unit originally encumbered
by the lien in its same priority.
(8) Distribution may be made either in money or in property or
securities and either in installments from time to time or as a whole,
if this can be done fairly and ratably and in conformity with the declaration
and shall be made as soon as reasonably consistent with the beneficial
liquidation of the assets.
(9) An association that has been terminated nevertheless continues
to exist for the purpose of winding up its affairs, prosecuting and defending
actions by or against it, and enabling it to collect and discharge obligations,
dispose of and convey its property, and collect and divide its assets,
but not for the purpose of conducting its activities except so far as necessary
for the winding up thereof.
(10) The termination of a condominium does not bar the creation
of another condominium affecting all or any portion of the same property.
(11) This section does not apply to the termination of a condominium
incident to a merger of that condominium with one or more other condominiums
under s. 718.110(7).
In the event of substantial damage to or destruction of all or a substantial
part of the condominium property, and if the property is not repaired,
reconstructed, or rebuilt within a reasonable period of time, any unit
owner may petition a court for equitable relief, which may include a termination
of the condominium and a partition.
Limitation of liability.--
(1) The liability of the owner of a unit for common expenses
is limited to the amounts for which he or she is assessed for common expenses
from time to time in accordance with this chapter, the declaration, and
(2) The owner of a unit may be personally liable for the acts
or omissions of the association in relation to the use of the common elements,
but only to the extent of his or her pro rata share of that liability in
the same percentage as his or her interest in the common elements, and
then in no case shall that liability exceed the value of his or her unit.
(3) In any legal action in which the association may be exposed
to liability in excess of insurance coverage protecting it and the unit
owners, the association shall give notice of the exposure within a reasonable
time to all unit owners, and they shall have the right to intervene and
Separate taxation of condominium parcels; survival of declaration after
tax sale; assessment of timeshare estates.--
(1) Ad valorem taxes, benefit taxes, and special assessments
by taxing authorities shall be assessed against the condominium parcels
and not upon the condominium property as a whole. No ad valorem tax, benefit
tax, or special assessment, including those made by special districts,
drainage districts, or water management districts, may be separately assessed
against recreational facilities or other common elements if such facilities
or common elements are owned by the condominium association or are owned
jointly by the owners of the condominium parcels. Each condominium parcel
shall be separately assessed for ad valorem taxes and special assessments
as a single parcel. The taxes and special assessments levied against each
condominium parcel shall constitute a lien only upon the condominium parcel
assessed and upon no other portion of the condominium property.
(2) All provisions of a declaration relating to a condominium
parcel which has been sold for taxes or special assessments survive and
are enforceable after the issuance of a tax deed or master's deed, upon
foreclosure of an assessment, a certificate or lien, a tax deed, tax certificate,
or tax lien, to the same extent that they would be enforceable against
a voluntary grantee of the title immediately prior to the delivery of the
tax deed, master's deed, or clerk's certificate of title as provided in
(1) Subsequent to recording the declaration and while the property
remains subject to the declaration, no liens of any nature are valid against
the condominium property as a whole except with the unanimous consent of
the unit owners. During this period, liens may arise or be created only
against individual condominium parcels.
(2) Labor performed on or materials furnished to a unit shall
not be the basis for the filing of a lien pursuant to part I of chapter
713, the Construction Lien Law, against the unit or condominium parcel
of any unit owner not expressly consenting to or requesting the labor or
materials. Labor performed on or materials furnished to the common elements
are not the basis for a lien on the common elements, but if authorized
by the association, the labor or materials are deemed to be performed or
furnished with the express consent of each unit owner and may be the basis
for the filing of a lien against all condominium parcels in the proportions
for which the owners are liable for common expenses.
(3) If a lien against two or more condominium parcels becomes
effective, each owner may relieve his or her condominium parcel of the
lien by exercising any of the rights of a property owner under chapter
713, or by payment of the proportionate amount attributable to his or her
condominium parcel. Upon the payment, the lienor shall release the lien
of record for that condominium parcel.
Unconscionability of certain leases; rebuttable presumption.--
(1) A lease pertaining to use by condominium unit owners of recreational
or other common facilities, irrespective of the date on which such lease
was entered into, is presumptively unconscionable if all of the following
(a) The lease was executed by persons none of whom at the time
of the execution of the lease were elected by condominium unit owners,
other than the developer, to represent their interests;
(b) The lease requires either the condominium association or
the condominium unit owners to pay real estate taxes on the subject real
(c) The lease requires either the condominium association or
the condominium unit owners to insure buildings or other facilities on
the subject real property against fire or any other hazard;
(d) The lease requires either the condominium association or
the condominium unit owners to perform some or all maintenance obligations
pertaining to the subject real property or facilities located upon the
subject real property;
(e) The lease requires either the condominium association or
the condominium unit owners to pay rents to the lessor for a period of
21 years or more;
(f) The lease provides that failure of the lessee to make payments
of rents due under the lease either creates, establishes, or permits establishment
of a lien upon individual condominium units of the condominium to secure
claims for rent;
(g) The lease requires an annual rental which exceeds 25 percent
of the appraised value of the leased property as improved, provided that,
for purposes of this paragraph, "annual rental" means the amount due during
the first 12 months of the lease for all units, regardless of whether such
units were in fact occupied or sold during that period, and "appraised
value" means the appraised value placed upon the leased property the first
tax year after the sale of a unit in the condominium;
(h) The lease provides for a periodic rental increase; and
(i) The lease or other condominium documents require that every
transferee of a condominium unit must assume obligations under the lease.
(2) The Legislature expressly finds that many leases involving
use of recreational or other common facilities by residents of condominiums
were entered into by parties wholly representative of the interests of
a condominium developer at a time when the condominium unit owners not
only did not control the administration of their condominium, but also
had little or no voice in such administration. Such leases often contain
numerous obligations on the part of either or both a condominium association
and condominium unit owners with relatively few obligations on the part
of the lessor. Such leases may or may not be unconscionable in any given
case. Nevertheless, the Legislature finds that a combination of certain
onerous obligations and circumstances warrants the establishment of a rebuttable
presumption of unconscionability of certain leases, as specified in subsection
(1). The presumption may be rebutted by a lessor upon the showing of additional
facts and circumstances to justify and validate what otherwise appears
to be an unconscionable lease under this section. Failure of a lease to
contain all the enumerated elements shall neither preclude a determination
of unconscionability of the lease nor raise a presumption as to its conscionability.
It is the intent of the Legislature that this section is remedial and does
not create any new cause of action to invalidate any condominium lease,
but shall operate as a statutory prescription on procedural matters in
actions brought on one or more causes of action existing at the time of
the execution of such lease.
(3) Any provision of the Florida Statutes to the contrary notwithstanding,
neither the statute of limitations nor laches shall prohibit unit owners
from maintaining a cause of action under the provisions of this section.
Federal Condominium and Cooperative Abuse Relief Act of 1980; applicability.--
It is the intent of the Legislature that the provisions of Title VI
of Pub. L. No. 96-399, other than the exceptions stated in s. 611 of that
act, shall not apply in this state.
Right of owners to peaceably assemble.--
(1) All common elements, common areas, and recreational facilities
serving any condominium shall be available to unit owners in the condominium
or condominiums served thereby and their invited guests for the use intended
for such common elements, common areas, and recreational facilities, subject
to the provisions of s. 718.106(4). The entity or entities responsible
for the operation of the common elements, common areas, and recreational
facilities may adopt reasonable rules and regulations pertaining to the
use of such common elements, common areas, and recreational facilities.
No entity or entities shall unreasonably restrict any unit owner's right
to peaceably assemble or right to invite public officers or candidates
for public office to appear and speak in common elements, common areas,
and recreational facilities.
(2) Any owner prevented from exercising rights guaranteed by
subsection (1) may bring an action in the appropriate court of the county
in which the alleged infringement occurred, and, upon favorable adjudication,
the court shall enjoin the enforcement of any provision contained in any
condominium document or rule which operates to deprive the owner of such
Cable television service; resident's right to access without extra charge.--
No resident of any condominium dwelling unit, whether tenant or owner,
shall be denied access to any available franchised or licensed cable television
service, nor shall such resident or cable television service be required
to pay anything of value in order to obtain or provide such service except
those charges normally paid for like services by residents of, or providers
of such services to, single-family homes within the same franchised or
licensed area and except for installation charges as such charges may be
agreed to between such resident and the provider of such services.
Limitation on actions by association.--
The statute of limitations for any actions in law or equity which a
condominium association or a cooperative association may have shall not
begin to run until the unit owners have elected a majority of the members
of the board of administration.
If a contract or lease between a condominium unit owner or association
and a developer contains a provision allowing attorney's fees to the developer,
should any litigation arise under the provisions of the contract or lease,
the court shall also allow reasonable attorney's fees to the unit owner
or association when the unit owner or association prevails in any action
by or against the unit owner or association with respect to the contract
Alternative dispute resolution; voluntary mediation; mandatory nonbinding
arbitration; legislative findings.--
(1) DEFINITIONS.--As used in this section, the term "dispute"
means any disagreement between two or more parties that involves:
(a) The authority of the board of directors, under this chapter
or association document to:
1. Require any owner to take any action, or not to take any action,
involving that owner's unit or the appurtenances thereto.
2. Alter or add to a common area or element.
(b) The failure of a governing body, when required by this chapter
or an association document, to:
1. Properly conduct elections.
2. Give adequate notice of meetings or other actions.
3. Properly conduct meetings.
4. Allow inspection of books and records.
"Dispute" does not include any disagreement that primarily involves:
title to any unit or common element; the interpretation or enforcement
of any warranty; the levy of a fee or assessment, or the collection of
an assessment levied against a party; the eviction or other removal of
a tenant from a unit; alleged breaches of fiduciary duty by one or more
directors; or claims for damages to a unit based upon the alleged failure
of the association to maintain the common elements or condominium property.
(2) VOLUNTARY MEDIATION.--Voluntary mediation through Citizen
Dispute Settlement Centers as provided for in s. 44.201 is encouraged.
(3) LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS.--
(a) The Legislature finds that unit owners are frequently at
a disadvantage when litigating against an association. Specifically, a
condominium association, with its statutory assessment authority, is often
more able to bear the costs and expenses of litigation than the unit owner
who must rely on his or her own financial resources to satisfy the costs
of litigation against the association.
(b) The Legislature finds that the courts are becoming overcrowded
with condominium and other disputes, and further finds that alternative
dispute resolution has been making progress in reducing court dockets and
trials and in offering a more efficient, cost-effective option to court
litigation. However, the Legislature also finds that alternative dispute
resolution should not be used as a mechanism to encourage the filing of
frivolous or nuisance suits.
(c) There exists a need to develop a flexible means of alternative
dispute resolution that directs disputes to the most efficient means of
(d) The high cost and significant delay of circuit court litigation
faced by unit owners in the state can be alleviated by requiring nonbinding
arbitration and mediation in appropriate cases, thereby reducing delay
and attorney's fees while preserving the right of either party to have
its case heard by a jury, if applicable, in a court of law.
(4) MANDATORY NONBINDING ARBITRATION AND MEDIATION OF DISPUTES.--The
Division of Florida Land Sales, Condominiums, and Mobile Homes of the Department
of Business and Professional Regulation shall employ full-time attorneys
to act as arbitrators to conduct the arbitration hearings provided by this
chapter. The division may also certify attorneys who are not employed by
the division to act as arbitrators to conduct the arbitration hearings
provided by this section. No person may be employed by the department as
a full-time arbitrator unless he or she is a member in good standing of
The Florida Bar. The department shall promulgate rules of procedure to
govern such arbitration hearings including mediation incident thereto.
The decision of an arbitrator shall be final; however, such a decision
shall not be deemed final agency action. Nothing in this provision shall
be construed to foreclose parties from proceeding in a trial de novo unless
the parties have agreed that the arbitration is binding. If such judicial
proceedings are initiated, the final decision of the arbitrator shall be
admissible in evidence in the trial de novo.
(a) Prior to the institution of court litigation, a party to
a dispute shall petition the division for nonbinding arbitration. The petition
must be accompanied by a filing fee in the amount of $50. Filing fees collected
under this section must be used to defray the expenses of the alternative
dispute resolution program.
(b) The petition must recite, and have attached thereto, supporting
proof that the petitioner gave the respondents:
1. Advance written notice of the specific nature of the dispute;
2. A demand for relief, and a reasonable opportunity to comply
or to provide the relief; and
3. Notice of the intention to file an arbitration petition or
other legal action in the absence of a resolution of the dispute.
Failure to include the allegations or proof of compliance with these
prerequisites requires dismissal of the petition without prejudice.
(c) Upon receipt, the petition shall be promptly reviewed by
the division to determine the existence of a dispute and compliance with
the requirements of paragraphs (a) and (b). If emergency relief is required
and is not available through arbitration, a motion to stay the arbitration
may be filed. The motion must be accompanied by a verified petition alleging
facts that, if proven, would support entry of a temporary injunction, and
if an appropriate motion and supporting papers are filed, the division
may abate the arbitration pending a court hearing and disposition of a
motion for temporary injunction.
(d) Upon determination by the division that a dispute exists
and that the petition substantially meets the requirements of paragraphs
(a) and (b) and any other applicable rules, a copy of the petition shall
forthwith be served by the division upon all respondents.
(e) Either before or after the filing of the respondents' answer
to the petition, any party may request that the arbitrator refer the case
to mediation under this section and any rules adopted by the division.
Upon receipt of a request for mediation, the division shall promptly contact
the parties to determine if there is agreement that mediation would be
appropriate. If all parties agree, the dispute must be referred to mediation.
Notwithstanding a lack of an agreement by all parties, the arbitrator may
refer a dispute to mediation at any time.
(f) Upon referral of a case to mediation, the parties must select
a mutually acceptable mediator. To assist in the selection, the arbitrator
shall provide the parties with a list of both volunteer and paid mediators
that have been certified by the division under s. 718.501. If the parties
are unable to agree on a mediator within the time allowed by the arbitrator,
the arbitrator shall appoint a mediator from the list of certified mediators.
If a case is referred to mediation, the parties shall attend a mediation
conference, as scheduled by the parties and the mediator. If any party
fails to attend a duly noticed mediation conference, without the permission
or approval of the arbitrator or mediator, the arbitrator must impose sanctions
against the party, including the striking of any pleadings filed, the entry
of an order of dismissal or default if appropriate, and the award of costs
and attorneys' fees incurred by the other parties. Unless otherwise agreed
to by the parties or as provided by order of the arbitrator, a party is
deemed to have appeared at a mediation conference by the physical presence
of the party or its representative having full authority to settle without
further consultation, provided that an association may comply by having
one or more representatives present with full authority to negotiate a
settlement and recommend that the board of administration ratify and approve
such a settlement within 5 days from the date of the mediation conference.
The parties shall share equally the expense of mediation, unless they agree
(g) The purpose of mediation as provided for by this section
is to present the parties with an opportunity to resolve the underlying
dispute in good faith, and with a minimum expenditure of time and resources.
(h) Mediation proceedings must generally be conducted in accordance
with the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure, and these proceedings are privileged
and confidential to the same extent as court-ordered mediation. Persons
who are not parties to the dispute are not allowed to attend the mediation
conference without the consent of all parties, with the exception of counsel
for the parties and corporate representatives designated to appear for
a party. If the mediator declares an impasse after a mediation conference
has been held, the arbitration proceeding terminates, unless all parties
agree in writing to continue the arbitration proceeding, in which case
the arbitrator's decision shall be either binding or nonbinding, as agreed
upon by the parties; in the arbitration proceeding, the arbitrator shall
not consider any evidence relating to the unsuccessful mediation except
in a proceeding to impose sanctions for failure to appear at the mediation
conference. If the parties do not agree to continue arbitration, the arbitrator
shall enter an order of dismissal, and either party may institute a suit
in a court of competent jurisdiction. The parties may seek to recover any
costs and attorneys' fees incurred in connection with arbitration and mediation
proceedings under this section as part of the costs and fees that may be
recovered by the prevailing party in any subsequent litigation.
(i) Arbitration shall be conducted according to rules promulgated
by the division. The filing of a petition for arbitration shall toll the
applicable statute of limitations.
(j) At the request of any party to the arbitration, such arbitrator
shall issue subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production
of books, records, documents, and other evidence and any party on whose
behalf a subpoena is issued may apply to the court for orders compelling
such attendance and production. Subpoenas shall be served and shall be
enforceable in the manner provided by the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure.
Discovery may, in the discretion of the arbitrator, be permitted in the
manner provided by the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure. Rules adopted
by the division may authorize any reasonable sanctions except contempt
for a violation of the arbitration procedural rules of the division or
for the failure of a party to comply with a reasonable nonfinal order issued
by an arbitrator which is not under judicial review.
(k) The arbitration decision shall be presented to the parties
in writing. An arbitration decision is final in those disputes in which
the parties have agreed to be bound. An arbitration decision is also final
if a complaint for a trial de novo is not filed in a court of competent
jurisdiction in which the condominium is located within 30 days. The right
to file for a trial de novo entitles the parties to file a complaint in
the appropriate trial court for a judicial resolution of the dispute. The
prevailing party in an arbitration proceeding shall be awarded the costs
of the arbitration and reasonable attorney's fees in an amount determined
by the arbitrator. Such an award shall include the costs and reasonable
attorney's fees incurred in the arbitration proceeding as well as the costs
and reasonable attorney's fees incurred in preparing for and attending
any scheduled mediation.
(l) The party who files a complaint for a trial de novo shall
be assessed the other party's arbitration costs, court costs, and other
reasonable costs, including attorney's fees, investigation expenses, and
expenses for expert or other testimony or evidence incurred after the arbitration
hearing if the judgment upon the trial de novo is not more favorable than
the arbitration decision. If the judgment is more favorable, the party
who filed a complaint for trial de novo shall be awarded reasonable court
costs and attorney's fees.
(m) Any party to an arbitration proceeding may enforce an arbitration
award by filing a petition in a court of competent jurisdiction in which
the condominium is located. A petition may not be granted unless the time
for appeal by the filing of a complaint for trial de novo has expired.
If a complaint for a trial de novo has been filed, a petition may not be
granted with respect to an arbitration award that has been stayed. If the
petition for enforcement is granted, the petitioner shall recover reasonable
attorney's fees and costs incurred in enforcing the arbitration award.
A mediation settlement may also be enforced through the county or circuit
court, as applicable, and any costs and fees incurred in the enforcement
of a settlement agreement reached at mediation must be awarded to the prevailing
party in any enforcement action.
Condominiums as residential property.--
For the purpose of property and casualty insurance risk classification,
condominiums shall be classed as residential property.