Law Does Not Require Recording Rules

Annual Legislative Review Begins

2024 was a particularly active year for community association legislation. There were several hundred pages of legislation affecting condominium, cooperative and homeowners’ associations. Community association legislation is often described as “the good, the bad, and the ugly.” 2024 was a notable exception in that not much “good” appears to have been done.

Today we will start with a review of some of the changes to the condominium laws that became effective July 1, 2024.

  • Mandatory Websites: Current law requires an association operating any condominium with 150 units or more to have a website, which must contain certain items for unit owner review, set forth in a “laundry list” recited in the statute. The new law will expand this mandate to any association operating a condominium containing 25 units or more. The deadline for compliance with this requirement is January 1, 2026.
  • Director Education: The new law requires all current members of a condominium association board to submit proof of attendance at 4 hours of educational classes. There is a requirement for one hour per year of update education each year thereafter. The educational classes may be given by private parties, but the state condo agency must approve the course. Directors elected or appointed before July 1, 2024, will be required to comply by June 30, 2025. Directors elected or appointed on or after July 1, 2024, must comply within 1 year before or 90 days after being elected or appointed.
  • Board Meetings: Effective July 1, 2024, boards must hold at least one meeting per quarter (there is an exception for condominiums of 10 units or less). The new law provides that at least four times each year, board meeting agendas must include an opportunity for members to ask questions of the board. The new law also states that an owner’s right to attend board meetings includes the right to “ask questions relating to reports on the status of construction or repair projects, the status of revenues and expenditures during the current fiscal year, and other issues affecting the condominium.”
  • Board Meeting Notices: Section 718.112(2)(c)3. of the Florida Condominium Act now provides that notice of any meeting at which regular or special assessments against unit owners are to be considered must specifically state that assessments will be considered and provide the estimated cost and description of the purposes for such assessments. If an agenda item relates to the approval of a contract for goods or services, a copy of the contract must be provided with the notice and be made available for inspection and copying upon a written request from a unit owner or made available on the association’s website or through an application that can be downloaded on a mobile device.
  • Official Records Inspection: The law will now require condominium associations to provide a checklist of documents that have been provided for inspection to the owner, as well as those which were not, in connection with a records inspection. In what I would call a good change, the new law permits an association to direct an owner to its website if the records are posted there, in lieu of physical inspection. This would apply to associations that are currently not mandated to have a website, but have a website, nonetheless.
  • New Criminal Penalties: In what I would call one of the most horrendous changes I have ever seen made to the condominium laws in my 37 plus years in this field, new Section 718.111(12)(c)2. of the Florida Condominium Act now provides that a director or member of the board or association or a community association manager who “knowingly, willfully, and repeatedly” violates the inspection statute commits a second-degree criminal misdemeanor and must be removed from office. The term “repeatedly” is defined as two or more violations within a 12-month period.

Next week we will continue with a review of the new condominium statutes and then will cover other significant changes applicable to homeowners’ associations.

Joe Adams is an attorney with Becker & Poliakoff, P.A., Fort Myers. Send questions to Joe Adams by e-mail to jadams@beckerlawyers.com. Past editions may be viewed at floridacondohoalawblog.com.

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