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“A ‘CliffsNotes’ Guide for New Condominium Board Members” – FCAP Managers Report

The election is over, and you have earned a coveted seat on your condominium association’s board of directors. Now what? This helpful guide will provide you with a “CliffsNotes” version of important things to remember as you embark on your journey as a director. What exactly does a member of the board of directors do? […]

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“2023 in Review” – FCAP Managers Report

New Legislation The 2023 Florida legislative session addressed a wide variety of issues impacting community associations. The longest bill impacting community associations became 2023-203, Laws of Florida. The amended statutes changed, clarified, or corrected provisions created by the laws approved in 2022, Senate Bill 4-D, which became Chapter 2022-269, Laws of Florida, commonly referred to as […]

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“So, You Received a Written Inquiry” – FCAP Managers Report

So, your community association received correspondence that requests answers to certain questions. You may have just received what is also referred to as a “written inquiry.” What to do? First and foremost, you should always ensure that the Board of Directors and legal counsel of your community association are promptly advised of the receipt of […]

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“Application of New Section 768.0701, Florida Statutes, Regarding Multifamily Property Safety to Condominium Associations” – FCAP Managers Report

Every year community associations watch for legislative changes to the general statutes that govern community associations, including Chapter 718, Florida Statutes, for Condominium Associations; Chapter 719, Florida Statutes, for Cooperative Associations; and Chapter 720, Florida Statutes, for Homeowners’ Associations. However, changes to other parts of the Florida Statutes can have important, substantive effects on community […]

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“Lessons Learned from Past Hurricanes” – FCAP Managers Report

In 2004 the east coast of Florida was struck in very short order by two significant hurricanes, Frances and Jeanne. While we learned many, many lessons from those hurricanes, one of the problems that we faced, over which we had limited control, was the issue of communication. While many clients did not have up-to-date email […]

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“Simplifying Official Records Inspections for both the Association and the Owners” – FCAP Managers Report

Condominium associations, cooperatives, and homeowners’ associations are all required to maintain and make available to owners official records of the association. The respective statutes governing each type of association contain a list of records that must be maintained by the association, as well as a catch-all provision for “all other written records of the association.” […]

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“Can the Directors and Members of Your Community Association Meet and Vote Remotely?” – FCAP Managers Report

During the COVID-19 pandemic, people and businesses alike struggled to meet, organize, and otherwise conduct business in person due to quarantine measures and social distancing policies. In light of these challenges, in 2021, the Florida Legislature enacted laws to make clear that, during a state of emergency, condominium, cooperatives, and homeowners’ associations are authorized to […]

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“Avoiding Legal Woes by Mastering the Mundane” – FCAP Managers Report

It seems now more than ever that Florida’s community association managers are asked to do more and more. Focusing on a few of the basics can go a long way in keeping the community association out of legal trouble and alleviating the stress of community association management. Here are a few traps for the unwary […]

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“Community Association Budgeting in the Sunshine” – FCAP Managers Report

‘Sunshine’ laws require transparency and disclosure in government and business. Community associations have their own of “sunshine” requirements. Are there any “sunshine” requirements for the budgeting process? In other words, what parts of the budget process must community boards ensure to make open, available, or transparent to community members? What notice is required? Board meetings […]

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“‘NIMBY’ to ‘YIMBY’” – FCAP Managers Report

You have probably heard of the term “NIMBY,” which is the acronym for “Not in My Back Yard.” It is the attitude of some who oppose new development, fearing that it will adversely affect them in terms of architectural style, adverse impacts to views, housing density, or traffic, for example. However, with some proactive investments […]

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“Sunshine Laws for Condominium Associations” – FCAP Managers Report

Issues generally arise in community associations when there is or appears to be a lack of transparency between the board of directors and the association members. The Florida’s Sunshine in the Government Act, or the “sunshine laws,” require transparency and disclosure in government and business. Although the Florida’s Sunshine in the Government Act does not […]

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“Welcome to the Board: Now What?” – FCAP Managers Report

So, you’ve been elected or appointed to the board of your association. Now what? First, it is necessary to become familiar with the association’s governing documents (declaration, articles of incorporation, and bylaws) and any written rules and policies. Board members are charged with upholding these documents and policies to the best of their ability as […]

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“Water Will Come: Get Your Ducks in A Row” – FCAP Managers Report

Florida has a well-deserved reputation for many things: world-class theme parks, stunning beaches, and, to the delight of outsiders everywhere, the exploits of the infamous “Florida Man.” We also accept, as an inescapable consequence of living in our state, that we must deal with hurricanes, tropical storms, and regularly scheduled summer thunderstorms. As obnoxious as […]

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“Tips, Tricks and Things You Can Mix” – FCAP Managers Report

Timesavers Proxies and Limited Proxies In condominiums and cooperatives, general proxies are used for establishment of a quorum and limited proxies are used to vote on a particular matter – amendments, waive reserves or financial reporting requirements, etc. In homeowner associations proxies may also be used for elections. Proxies and limited proxies are not secret. […]

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“Can the Board Enforce Restrictions that the Previous Board Failed to Enforce?” – FCAP Managers Report

The short answer is yes. But not so fast. The correct procedures must be followed. The Board needs to put owners on notice that from this point onward, the restriction that was previously unenforced will now be actively and evenly enforced. This is done through a Board resolution adopted at a duly noticed Board meeting. […]

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“Legal Recap 2022” – FCAP Managers Report

The 2022 legislative session may end up being one of the most impactful in terms of legislative changes to the Condominium Act since the statute was first enacted in 1963. This is a result of Senate Bill 4-D (SB 4-D), codified as Chapter 2022-269, Laws of Florida, which became effective on May 26, 2022. The […]

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“Is your Community Association Set up to Vote Electronically?” – FCAP Managers Report

With election season upon us, has your community set up electronic voting? In many communities, voter apathy is an issue with members not returning their proxy and not attending meetings. Not only does this impact elections, but also other membership votes, such as amending the governing documents, voting on material alterations, etc.. One way to […]

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“Management of Community Amenities, Landscaping, and Pests” – FCAP Managers Report

Have you ever asked yourself, why would anyone want to live in a community that could restrict your every move? The answer may surprise you:  a change in lifestyle. What exactly draws individuals to homeowners and condominium communities? The various amenities and an impressive, well-manicured landscape, the likes only seen at five-star hotels. However, that new […]

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“It’s Hurricane Preparedness Time Again” – FCAP Managers Report

It’s that time of year again. As the days get longer and the weather gets hotter, we know that hurricane season is fast approaching. Therefore, this is a good time to review some of the “best practices” to prepare for and protect the association in the event a hurricane comes our way. Ideally, the board […]

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“Disputes in Community Associations: Arbitration, Mediation, or Litigation?” – FCAP Managers Report

Disputes within community associations were originally treated like other civil disputes, requiring litigation when the parties could not agree. The law evolved to now require certain types of “alternate dispute resolutions” for community associations before the parties head to court. Specifically, both the Florida Condominium Act (Chapter 718 of the Florida Statutes) and the Florida […]

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“Preparing for Success – What Associations and Management Companies Should Consider When Contemplating Doing Business With Each Other” – FCAP Managers Report

Hiring a property management company is one of the most important decisions a community association can make. In turn, taking on a new community association client has significant implications for a property management company. A bad fit can be problematic for all involved. Understanding what each party expects and offers at the outset will give […]

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“Impact of 2022 Legislative Summary on Community Associations” – FCAP Managers Report

The 2022 session of the Florida Legislature was statistically slightly above average with 1700 bills considered in its 60-day session. A total of 238 bills were passed by both houses and will be presented to the governor for his signature. Thirty bills were filed that could have impacted community associations. For residents of condominiums, the […]

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“2022 Community Association Legislation – What Happened?” – FCAP Managers Report

After the Surfside tragedy, everyone wanted to know how such a tragedy could happen and what steps could be taken to avoid similar incidents in the future. What caused the collapse? Could it have been avoided? Why were repairs not made? Why did local governments allow repairs to drag on? Why were repairs not made […]

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“Switching Hats: Can a Lawyer Who Represents an Association also Serve as a Member of the Client’s Board of Directors?” – FCAP Managers Report

The short answer: there is no express prohibition against this, but it’s complicated and not recommended for either the association or the lawyer. There are several ethical issues that arise due to the lawyer’s duties to the entity as its counsel, fiduciary duties to the entity as a director, and the lawyer’s personal self interest […]

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“Board Member Tidbits” – FCAP Managers Report

For this article, I thought I would jump around and discuss various items regarding board members, board meetings and a few association operational issues that keep popping up as questions and issues. Board member certification. Let’s start with the board member certification requirement, which applies to condominiums, homeowner associations and cooperative association board members. Within […]

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