Becker attorneys have played an integral role in shaping Florida’s homeowner association laws. We represent more than 4,000 HOAs and other community associations statewide.
Florida has some of the most unique, comprehensive, and complex homeowner association (HOA) laws in the United States. With the stated purpose of “protect[ing] the rights of association members without unduly impairing the ability of such associations to perform their functions,” these laws seek to strike a balance between the interests of HOAs and their constituents. For nearly 50 years, Becker’s Florida HOA lawyers have been central figures in the development and interpretation of the law.
Our Florida homeowners association practice is devoted to representing HOAs in the Sunshine State. It is a part of our broader community association practice, in which we advise and represent more than 4,000 associations statewide — including condo associations. If you need a Florida homeowner association lawyer who you can trust with unwavering confidence, Becker is your choice. Let’s start a conversation today.
Our approach to representing homeowner associations is simple: Our clients come first. As a result of our decades’ worth of experience, we know what homeowner associations need, we know what their officers and directors want, and we know what it takes to exceed their expectations. Here are just some of the factors that are responsible for Becker becoming a recognized leader in the field:
- Exclusive HOA Representation – Unlike many other firms that have HOA practices in Florida, our practice is devoted exclusively to HOA representation. While we respect the rights of individual homeowners under Florida law, we focus our practice on promoting, protecting, and enforcing our HOA clients’ rights.
- Devotion to HOA Interests – As a result of our exclusive focus on HOA representation, we are devoted to advocating for homeowner associations’ interests in Florida. We are well-known for our advocacy in the courts, before the Florida Legislature, and before state and local agencies.
- Full-Service Advice and Representation – As outlined below, we provide full-service advice and representation for Florida homeowners associations. Our lawyers handle regulatory, legislative, transactional, and litigation matters for our clients, and we routinely assist with planning, development and other operational matters as well.
- Single Point of Contact in the Firm – All of our HOA clients have a single point of contact in the firm. This assigned attorney works closely with the association’s officers, directors and manager, and he or she serves as a liaison between these individuals and the firm’s attorneys who practice in other areas.
- Added-Value Resources and Services – Beyond providing legal representation, we also provide additional resources and services to our HOA clients. These include our proprietary online voting software, BeckerBALLOT.com, and our Community Association Leadership Lobby (CALL).
Our comprehensive suite of legal services for homeowner associations in Florida ensures that our clients are able to make informed decisions at every turn. We help our clients minimize their risk and maximize their opportunities. Contact us today to speak with an experienced Florida HOA attorney about how we can assist your association with the following:
- State and Local Compliance – Our Florida homeowner association attorneys assist HOAs with all aspects of state and local compliance. This includes compliance with state laws, rules and regulations, court rulings, and administrative decisions.
- Federal Compliance – We also assist with all aspects of federal compliance. This includes compliance with federal fair housing and anti-discrimination laws, as well as telecommunications, environmental, and other laws that apply to neighborhood development and HOA operations.
- HOA Governance Documents – Our lawyers have significant experience drafting, amending, interpreting and enforcing HOA governance documents. We routinely assist HOAs with Articles of Incorporation; Bylaws; Declarations of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions; and rules and regulations.
- Day-to-Day Legal Counsel – Homeowner association officers, directors, and managers can encounter a variety of legal issues on a daily basis. Our lawyers are available to assist our clients with these issues as they arise. This includes everything from internal governance matters to homeowner complaints and inquiries.
- Homeowner Disputes – We represent Florida HOAs in all types of homeowner disputes. From turnover disputes to breach-of-duty allegations, we have seen it all, and we can act quickly to protect our clients’ interests and enforce their statutory or contractual rights.
- Maintenance and Repairs – Homeowner disputes often arise in relation to financial responsibility for neighborhood maintenance and repairs. Our lawyers assist HOAs with understanding, explaining, and enforcing maintenance and repair obligations. We also assist with the enforcement of homeowners’ obligations to maintain and repair their homes.
- Financing – We are able to assist homeowners associations in Florida with identifying financing sources, structuring lines of credit, and reviewing and negotiating loan and credit documents. We are able to assist distressed HOAs with financing-related matters as well.
- Fiscal Management – Our lawyers advise HOA officers and directors regarding fiscal management issues such as maintaining reserves and conducting special assessments. We also advise regarding homeowners’ requests for audits and other similar types of matters.
- Insurance – We advise HOAs regarding their insurance needs, assist with obtaining coverage and review policies pre-purchase. We also assist with HOA insurance claims and disputes between HOAs and their insurers.
- Collections – While no one likes dealing with collection issues, collecting homeowners’ dues and assessments is imperative for HOAs. Our lawyers help HOAs implement policies and practices designed to minimize the need for collections, and we provide representation for informal and formal collections efforts when necessary.
- Contract Drafting and Negotiation – In addition to governance and financing documents, our Florida HOA attorneys draft and negotiate all other types of contracts associations need to conduct their operations and protect their interests. This includes leases, planning and development contracts, and vendor contracts, among others.
- Planning and Development – Our HOA lawyers have guided numerous homeowner associations through the planning and development process. From initial planning through neighborhood completion post-turnover, we help our clients’ officers, directors, and managers make informed decisions with the association’s immediate and long-term needs in mind.
- Developer Issues – Maintaining a good relationship with a neighborhood developer can help minimize challenges, especially in the early stages of development. But, it is not uncommon for issues to arise; and, when they do, associations need to respond appropriately. We can help.
- Owners’ Ad-Hoc Committees – We counsel owners’ ad-hoc committees during the pre-transition phase. If you have questions about homeowners’ rights or responsibilities, we can explain what you need to know and help you chart your path forward.
- Hurricane-Related Matters – All homeowner associations in Florida need to address hurricane preparedness. We advise owners, directors, and managers regarding hurricane preparations, and we provide representation for HOAs during the recovery and rebuilding processes.
FAQs: Understanding (and Complying with) Florida’s Unique and Complex HOA Laws
Does Florida law limit homeowner associations’ powers?
Yes and no. While Chapter 720 of the Florida Statutes delineates several powers granted to homeowner associations in the state, this list of powers is not exclusive. HOAs can and should establish additional powers through their governing documents. At the same time, however, Chapter 720 places limits on the powers that homeowner associations can claim for themselves. Our Florida homeowner association attorneys are intimately familiar with Chapter 720, and they help our clients exercise appropriate authority within the confines of the law.
Are all homeowners associations in Florida subject to Chapter 720?
Generally speaking, all homeowner associations in Florida are subject to Chapter 720. Also, keep in mind that homeowner associations in Florida are subject to various other local, state, and federal laws as well, and HOAs must maintain compliance with all of these laws on an ongoing basis.
How can (and should) HOAs enforce homeowners’ obligations in Florida?
Homeowner associations in Florida have several options when it comes to enforcing homeowners’ obligations. This applies to everything from the payment of dues and special assessments to compliance with paint color restrictions and neighborhood speed limits. Fines, late payment fees and liens are all common enforcement tools. They will be effective in most cases, but we can assist with pursuing additional enforcement measures as necessary.
Additional Resources for HOA Communities Offered by Becker
What is BeckerBALLOT.com?
BeckerBALLOT.com is our firm’s proprietary voting software for HOAs and other community associations. Once an association’s board adopts a resolution authorizing use of the system, members who consent to vote electronically will receive invitations to register with an explanation of how to vote through the website. BeckerBALLOT.com can be used for matters including amendment of governance documents, waivers, approvals, board of director voting, and more.
What is the Community Association Leadership Lobby (CALL)?
CALL is Becker’s statewide advocacy group that represents the interests of our 4,000+ community association clients. In addition to providing information and tools for HOA officers, directors, and managers, CALL provides direct easy access to all 160 members of the Florida Legislature.
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Each Florida co-op attorney at Becker is prepared to represent cooperative developers, management companies, boards, and other clients statewide.
In Florida, the cooperative ownership structure is far less typical than other forms of common ownership housing. This is due to a variety of factors, some of which are more relevant to cooperative developers, management companies, and boards than others. At Becker, we are well-versed in all forms of common ownership housing, including condominiums and cooperatives. We represent developers and management companies across the Sunshine State, and our Florida co-op attorneys work closely with each of our clients.
Is your company in the process of exploring a co-op development opportunity? Have you encountered problems during the development process? Do you need legal counsel for establishing a cooperative entity? Do you need legal counsel for managing a co-op on an ongoing basis? If so, we can help.
About Becker | A Florida Co-Op Law Firm with Decades of Experience
Established in 1973, our firm has worked with cooperatives and other community and housing associations since the beginning. Our lawyers are intimately familiar with Florida’s co-op laws – in large part because they helped create them. We have guided numerous developers through the process of establishing cooperatives, from land acquisition through the sale of shares, and we have helped developers, management companies, boards, and other clients resolve disputes in cases that set precedents and shaped the common law in our clients’ favor.
We have the largest dedicated team of board-certified attorneys in condominium and planned development law in Florida, and many of our Florida co-op attorneys are active in legislative and industry leadership activities. If you build, convert, or manage co-ops, we know your business. We can help you protect it, and we can help you drive it forward.
Our Legal Services for Florida Cooperatives
We provide comprehensive, full-service legal representation for Florida cooperative developers, management companies, boards, and other clients. The services that a Florida co-op attorney at our firm can provide include:
- Land Acquisition, Development, and Construction – We assist co-op developers with real estate financing, due diligence, development planning, contract negotiations, and construction management.
- Compliance with Chapter 719 of the Florida Statutes – Chapter 719 is the primary source of legal authority governing cooperatives in Florida. We help our clients establish, document, and maintain compliance.
- General Legal and Regulatory Compliance – We assist our co-op clients with general legal and regulatory compliance as well. This includes compliance with all pertinent local, state and federal laws, rules, regulations, and decisions.
- Formation and Structuring of the Co-Op Corporation – Proper formation and structuring of the co-op corporation is essential to successful cooperative management. Our Florida co-op attorneys bring centuries of combined experience to the table.
- Drafting Proprietary Leases and Occupancy Agreements – Our attorneys also rely on their significant experience to draft custom-tailored proprietary leases and occupancy agreements for our clients. We assist with negotiations, amendments, and enforcement efforts as well.
- Selling Cooperative Shares – There are several legal issues to be addressed before selling cooperative shares. We help make sure our clients are ready, and then we provide ongoing advice and representation as needed.
- Dealing with Lenders, Insurers, and Others – Due to the unique nature of cooperatives, purchasers often run into issues with their lenders and insurers. By familiarizing themselves with these issues and the ways they can be overcome, developers and management companies can help speed up closing times and maximize the profitability of their properties.
- Board-Related Issues – Filling board vacancies, dealing with allegations of fiduciary misconduct and other board-related issues are common challenges in the co-op sphere. With our attorneys’ extensive experience in co-op law, we are uniquely positioned to help our clients overcome these challenges when they arise.
- Resolving Disputes with Co-Op Owners – Disputes with co-op owners can involve a wide range of issues. From disputes involving common expenses to disputes involving owners’ rights to modify the interior of their individual units, we help our clients work to resolve all types of owner-related disputes as efficiently as possible.
- In-House Counsel Services – With the myriad legal issues co-op developers, management companies and boards can face on a daily basis, many of our cooperative clients have opted for our outsourced in-house counsel services. We offer custom-tailored in-house counsel solutions that are designed to comprehensively and cost-effectively meet our clients’ legal needs.
FAQs: Understanding the Complexities and Limitations of Florida’s Co-Op Laws
Are proprietary leases and occupancy agreements both available as options for cooperatives in Florida?
Yes. While other states have more regulations around the types of rights cooperatives must offer their shareholders, Florida’s co-op law is relatively relaxed in this regard. In Florida, co-ops can offer proprietary leases or occupancy agreements depending on how they prefer to structure and manage the relationship with individual shareholders.
Are there steps cooperatives can take to make it easier for potential shareholders to obtain financing and insurance?
Yes. There are steps cooperatives can – and generally should – take to remove barriers for prospective shareholders. For example, in many cases, lenders will require a “recognition agreement” before extending a loan for a co-op share purchase. So, by having a standard recognition agreement on hand, co-ops can help facilitate financed sales. Understanding underwriters’ requirements for co-op insurance and having the necessary documentation readily available can be helpful as well.
What options are available for enforcing cooperative shareholders’ financial and other obligations?
While there are various options for enforcing cooperative shareholders’ obligations (i.e., liens and collection actions), care must be taken to ensure compliance with Chapter 719 when pursuing enforcement. Statutory violations can potentially have serious consequences, but they can also be easily avoided with forethought and planning. If you have questions about enforcing cooperative shareholders’ obligations, we encourage you to contact us for more information before taking action.
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Each Florida condo lawyer is a recognized leader in the field. We have helped shape the law for decades, and we use the law to our clients’ advantage.
Condominiums are a critical sector of Florida’s commercial real estate industry. From beach condos along the coast to large, multi-building condominium developments dispersed throughout Central Florida, condos have proven immensely popular among lifetime residents, snowbirds, and retirees.
While people who buy individual units usually do so because of the relative ease that condo ownership affords, developers, associations, and other entities know that bringing individual units to market and successfully managing a condominium is far from easy. Issues can – and frequently do – arise at all stages of the process, and managing these issues effectively is crucial to maintaining a profitable venture. This is a reality with which each Florida condominium lawyer at Becker is intimately familiar.
We Have Represented Condominium Developers and Associations for Nearly 50 Years
Becker attorneys have represented condominium developers and associations in Florida for nearly 50 years. Our community and housing associations practice is among our firm’s strongest foundational pillars, and it holds a significant amount of responsibility for our firm’s statewide reputation today. We have the largest dedicated team of board-certified attorneys in condominium and planned development law in Florida, and we serve clients statewide in matters pertaining to condominium development and management.
Condominium development is a years-long process that is fraught with potential stumbling blocks. Developers need to have a clear plan and vision, and, to avoid unnecessary costs and delays, they need to have dotted all the I’s and crossed all the T’s. Even minor oversights can lead to major setbacks, and, in many cases, they can create exposure to litigation risks as well.
We do our part to ensure that condominium developers can complete their projects on time and on budget. Each Florida condo lawyer works closely with their developer clients from pre-planning through post-construction. We help our clients anticipate issues, take proactive measures to sidestep roadblocks, make informed decisions with due consideration for all pertinent legal risks, and protect their legal and financial interests through appropriate means.
Some examples of the areas in which we serve Florida condominium developers include:
- Planning and Development Strategy – Putting together an executable condominium development strategy is not an easy feat. Our Florida condo lawyers have guided many developers through the planning and strategizing processes, and they use the insights gained from this experience to help the firm’s current clients move forward as expeditiously and cost-effectively as possible.
- Land Acquisition – We represent condo developers in land acquisition transactions. This includes assisting with site selection, due diligence, financing, contract negotiations, closing, and post-closing matters.
- Land Use and Zoning – Each Florida condominium lawyer at Becker has significant experience helping developers overcome land use and zoning challenges in local jurisdictions statewide. We have also helped developers obtain entitlements, variances, special exceptions, density bonuses, and tens of millions of dollars in cash incentives.
- Statutory and Regulatory Compliance – In addition to land use and zoning challenges, condo developers can face a host of other statutory and regulatory compliance issues. Our lawyers are well-versed in all pertinent local, state, and federal sources of authority, and they guide our developer clients through the legal landscape while helping them implement compliance policies and procedures and deal with inspectors as necessary.
- Construction Management – From evaluating bids and negotiating contracts to dealing with mechanic’s liens and other issues arising during the construction process, we represent condo developers in all aspects of construction management. During construction, our lawyers are often in communication with our clients on a daily basis to help ensure that their projects run as smoothly as possible.
- Construction Dispute Resolution – Disputes during large-scale construction projects are common, and, in many cases, assessing potential claims and sorting out potential liability can seem like an uphill battle. But, with extensive relevant experience, our lawyers are able to efficiently sort through the issues, evaluate our clients’ options, and take appropriate offensive or defensive action to protect our clients’ interests.
- Corporate Matters – We also represent condominium developers in general corporate matters. This includes entity formation and governance, debt and equity financing, and other corporate necessities, which we can handle on an ad hoc basis or through our
in-house counsel program.
A significant portion of our community and housing associations practice is devoted to representing and advocating for the interests of condominium associations in Florida. We represent thousands of condo and other community associations, and we have developed proprietary online voting software, BeckerBALLOT.com, which is used by condo associations statewide. We provide a comprehensive suite of legal services for condominium associations of all sizes. We custom-tailor these services to each client’s needs, and we pair each client with an attorney who serves as the single point of contact for all legal matters.
FAQs: Florida Condominium Law and the Challenges it Presents for Developers
Are there unique aspects to condo development as compared to other types of projects?
Yes. Due to the combination of the nature and scale of condominium development projects, these projects face a number of unique challenges. These challenges range from regulatory hurdles to issues involving construction defects and condo associations. As a result, it is extremely important for condo developers to engage highly-experienced legal counsel. At Becker, we have the experience developers need to move forward with confidence.
Can condo developers expect local authorities to grant exceptions to land use and zoning restrictions?
It depends. While the answer to this question is “yes” in many cases, there are no guarantees. As a result, it is imperative that developers work with their counsel to proactively identify and address any land use or zoning issues that have the potential to interfere with their plans.
Does Becker represent condo developers statewide?
Yes. We represent condo developers throughout Florida. Our firm’s headquarters is in Ft. Lauderdale, and we have a total of 12 offices statewide.
Speak with a Florida Condominium Lawyer at Becker
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Becker’s Florida condo association lawyers provide representation in compliance, legislative, transactional, and litigation matters.
Representing condo associations is at the core of our practice. It is how we got our name, and our Florid condo association lawyers’ names appear on many of the most influential court decisions in condo association law from the past five decades. Beyond litigation, we also represent condo associations in compliance, legislative, and transactional matters, and we operate as outsourced in-house counsel for many of our condo association clients.
Custom-Tailored, One-on-One Legal Advice for Condo Association Officers, Directors and Managers
Within our condo association practice, we pair each association with an assigned attorney. This assigned attorney serves as the point of contact for the association’s officers, directors and management. These individuals will get to know the association’s assigned attorney very well, as they will speak and exchange emails regularly. Whenever the association needs advice or representation in an area outside of the assigned attorney’s practice focus, this attorney will engage with other attorneys within the firm on the association’s behalf as necessary.
This approach ensures that each association we represent has ongoing direct access to an attorney who is intimately familiar with the association’s operations, management structure, and legal matters, while also ensuring that all of our clients can benefit from our attorneys’ collective experience and insights.
Our Legal Services for Florida Condo Associations
Our legal services for Florida condo associations address all aspects of an association’s formation, operations, and management. We routinely assist condo associations in the Sunshine State with matters including:
- Legal and Regulatory Compliance – We advise condo associations regarding all aspects of legal and regulatory compliance. This includes compliance with local, state, and federal laws, rules, court rulings, and administrative decisions. While Chapter 718 of the Florida Statutes is among the primary laws impacting condo associations’ rights and obligations in the state, this is just one of the numerous laws with which Florida condo associations must comply.
- Legislative Matters – Each Florida condo association lawyer at our firm is well known within the Florida Legislature. We are staunch advocates, and we regularly handle legislative matters for our clients. Through our Community Association Leadership Lobby (CALL) website, www.callbp.com, our clients are able to connect directly with state legislators as well.
- Formation and Governance – Proper entity formation and careful drafting of condo associations’ governing documents are essential for minimizing the risk of disputes and the risk of personal liability for officers and directors. Our lawyers help our clients make informed decisions about entity type and structure, carefully draft custom-tailored governance documents, and assist with maintaining and updating associations’ governance documents on an ongoing basis.
- Financing, Insurance, and Related Matters – As a result of our experience representing condo associations for nearly 50 years, we are able to assist our clients with a broad range of matters not traditionally handled by other law firms. This includes debt and equity financing, insurance coverage and claims, and other fiscal and operational matters.
- Risk Management – Risk management is critical for condo associations, not only for them to protect themselves, but also to protect the interests of the individual owners to whom they owe fiduciary responsibilities. By working closely with our clients on an ongoing basis, we are able to help our clients identify and address risks before they turn into liabilities.
- Maintenance and Repairs – Maintenance and repair issues frequently involve (or lead to) disputes with individual unit owners. We help ensure that our clients are meeting their legal obligations, and we help our clients address unit owner concerns when they arise.
- Condo Association Documentation – Our Florida condo association lawyers prepare all necessary documentation so our clients can manage their properties effectively and in compliance with Florida law. This includes the Declaration of Condominium, condo rules and regulations, notices, and a plethora of other documents.
- Issues Involving Unit Owners – In addition to maintenance and repair disputes, we also advise and represent condo associations regarding all other issues involving unit owners. This includes everything from special assessments and collections to claims for breach of fiduciary duty and fraud.
- Hurricane Preparedness and Response – In Florida, hurricane preparedness is an essential aspect of risk management for condo associations. We work closely with our clients to ensure that they are prepared when disaster strikes. When it does, we guide them through the response process.
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Timeshares in Florida are subject to several laws and regulations. Our lawyers provide representation for all matters related to timeshare development, operation, and management.
Timeshares are prevalent throughout Florida. At Becker, every Florida timeshare attorney stands ready to represent developers, timeshare management companies, and other clients statewide. With decades of relevant experience, we are intimately familiar with Florida’s timeshare laws, and we are well-versed in the issues that tend to lead to trouble. We help our clients avoid these issues whenever possible, and we help them resolve these issues as efficiently as possible when necessary.
In Florida, timeshares fall under the broader umbrella of community association and planned development law. However, Florida also has one particular law, Chapter 721 of the Florida Statutes, that speaks specifically to developers’, managers’, and owners’ rights, and obligations. Timeshare development, management, and operation implicate various other local, state, and federal laws as well, and maintaining compliance with all of these laws is essential for mitigating risk and avoiding unnecessary disputes.
About Our Florida Timeshare Practice
Who We Are
Our Florida timeshare practice falls within our Florida Community Association Law Practice Group. This Practice Group consists of more than 30 attorneys, including Practice Group Chair Kenneth S. Direktor and Ft. Myers Office Managing Shareholder, Joseph E. Adams. All of the attorneys in the Practice Group have experience handling timeshare-related matters, and we pair each of our clients with an attorney who has significant relevant experience and who serves as the liaison between our client and our firm’s other attorneys.
What We Do
We represent clients with respect to all aspects of developing, operating, and managing timeshare properties in Florida. While many people assume that a timeshare is simply a normal residential property with multiple owners, this is not the case. Due to the complex and varied laws, rules, and regulations that apply, developing a timeshare property is a unique proposition, and operating and managing timeshare properties requires careful planning and risk mitigation.
With this in mind, we emphasize comprehensiveness in our representation. Our Florida timeshare lawyers ensure that our clients have the information and tools they need to develop and monetize their properties in full compliance with the law. We help our clients mitigate their risk through the implementation of appropriate policies, procedures, and contractual protections, and we help them make informed and strategic decisions when unexpected issues arise.
Our Florida timeshare attorneys are available to assist new and existing clients with matters involving:
- Chapter 721 of the Florida Statutes
- Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act (prohibiting “unfair or deceptive acts or practices”) and other applicable laws
- Property acquisition, development, and construction
- Insurance procurement and claims
- Mechanic’s liens
- Financing and fiscal management
- Time share sales and resales
- Timeshare cancellations
- Operational and management issues
- Hurricane preparedness
How We Help
Our timeshare clients rely on us to help them wherever and whenever their needs arise. We have worked with many of our clients for years, and many of these clients are in touch with our lawyers on a daily or weekly basis. These are just some of the ways a Florida timeshare lawyer at Becker helps our clients:
- Planning and Development Counsel – We represent clients throughout the planning and development phases of new timeshare projects. This includes assisting with property selection and due diligence, financing and purchase agreement negotiations, bidding and procurement, and construction project management.
- Formation, Compliance, and Governance – We help our clients choose appropriate entity forms and structures, and we draft and negotiate Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, Shareholder Agreements, Operating Agreements, and other governance documents. Our Florida timeshare lawyers also assist with the drafting and implementation of necessary compliance policies and procedures.
- Day-to-Day Advice – We take pride in our accessibility, and our clients rely on their ability to get in touch with our lawyers whenever they have questions or concerns. Having a good working relationship with our clients is essential, as it gives our clients the trust they need to make confident and sound decisions.
- Drafting Public Offering Statements – Under Section 721.07 of the Florida Statutes, timeshare developers are required to file a public offering statement before offering any shares for sale. Our lawyers draft public offering statements for our clients and file them with the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes. We also assist with public offering statement amendments and other related matters.
- Drafting Timeshare Purchase Agreements – Our lawyers have drafted numerous timeshare purchase agreements and timeshare resale agreements for properties across Florida. These agreements need to be property-specific. Relying on “form” agreements is a common mistake that gets many companies into trouble.
- Reviewing and Negotiating of Other Contracts – Developers, timeshare management companies, and other entities involved with timeshares will typically have a broad range of contract-related needs. Our lawyers review and negotiate all types of contracts to help ensure that they contain adequate protections and do not contain ambiguities that create unnecessary risks.
- Analyzing Cancellation Requests, Complaints, and Other Issues – Many timeshare purchasers end up having buyer’s remorse, and there are plaintiffs’ lawyers who will aggressively pursue claims for cancellation and rescission. Our lawyers analyze cancelation requests, complaints, and other issues in order to help our clients determine the best path forward.
- Representation for Construction and Commercial Disputes – We have significant experience representing clients in construction and commercial disputes involving timeshare properties. Whether you are facing breach allegations or you need to pursue a claim for deficient performance or non-payment, our lawyers can protect your company’s interests in settlement negotiations, alternative dispute resolution (ADR), or litigation.
- Representation for Time Share Owner Disputes – Our Florida timeshare attorneys have significant experience representing clients in disputes with individual owners. This includes disputes involving payment obligations, property damage, resale rights, fraud allegations, and claims for cancellation or rescission.
- Recordkeeping – Chapter 721 of the Florida statutes establishes several recordkeeping requirements for sellers and other entities. We help our clients set up systems to comply with these requirements, and we review our clients’ records to ensure compliance on an ongoing basis. We can also play a more active role in maintaining recordkeeping compliance if desired.
FAQs: Developing, Operating and Managing Time Share Properties in Florida
What are some of the key provisions of Florida’s timeshare law (Chapter 721) for developers?
Chapter 721 contains numerous provisions that are of critical importance for timeshare developers in Florida. As an example, Section 721.056 provides that, “it is the duty of the developer to supervise, manage, and control all aspects of the offering of a timeshare plan, including, but not limited to, promotion, advertising, contracting, and closing.” This section goes on to state that any violation of this duty is deemed a violation not only by the developer, but also, “by the person actually committing such violation.” This underscores the critical importance of Chapter 721 compliance for timeshare developers in Florida. Violations of the statute can result in liability not only at the entity level, but potentially for officers, salespeople, and other individuals as well. Our Florida timeshare lawyers rely on extensive experience to help ensure that our clients (and their executives and employees) are adequately protected.
What are the requirements for timeshare public offering statements in Florida?
Under Section 721.07, a public offering statement must meet several structural and substantive requirements, and they are subject to approval by the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes (the “Division”). While developers can conduct sales activities before receiving approval from the Division, they must be very careful (and meet certain additional requirements) when doing so, and they must provide appropriate notices to buyers following Division approval.
What do new timeshare developers need to know about cancellations and rescissions?
Florida’s timeshare law provides buyers with a right of cancellation during a 10-day “cooling off” period. Buyers also have the right to seek rescission for certain violations of the law. When offering timeshares in Florida, new developers must be cognizant of all of the various rules and restrictions that apply, and they must take these rules and restrictions into account when conducting marketing, sales, and other activities.
What are the risks of non-compliance with Florida’s timeshare law?
In addition to potential rescission of purchase contracts, non-compliance with Florida’s timeshare law can have other serious consequences for developers, management companies, resellers, and other entities. The same is true for the various other local, state, and federal laws and regulations that apply. As a result, legal compliance needs to be a priority, and companies involved in Florida’s timeshare industry need to work with experienced legal counsel who can help them navigate the landscape successfully.
Speak with a Florida Timeshare Attorney at Becker
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An influx of individuals and businesses have flocked to Florida since the beginning of the pandemic. Lured by the lack of income and capital gains taxes, along with year round summer-like weather, a reported 1,000 individuals per day move to the Sunshine State. Boasting a favorable tax climate, business incentives, and a growing multicultural talent pool, it’s easy to see why Florida consistently ranks among the most attractive markets in the nation.
Becker’ Florida Relocation Advisory Team provides individuals and businesses who are looking to relocate to Florida with a broad range of corporate, real estate, and government law and lobbying services to assist in their relocation.
Our Corporate attorneys are adept in guiding clients through the transition process which often begins with introducing clients to the legal and regulatory landscape in Florida to ensure compliance with the same and working with accountants and/or tax advisors to develop restructuring plans to effectuate the relocation in a tax efficient manner.
Since real estate is always an aspect of any personal and/or corporate relocation process, Becker’s seasoned real estate practice routinely represents buyers, sellers, investors, developers, and lenders in connection with the acquisition, disposition, financing, and leasing of residential and/or commercial properties. The firm also has its own in-house title agency, Becker Title, which can assist with real estate closing, title, and/or escrow services, as well as referrals to a wide network of outside agents and brokers and other vendors for various real estate services.
Additionally, unlike most traditional law firms, Becker’s Government Law & Lobbying Team can leverage their unique skill set and experience to help our relocating clients to maximize numerous tax and business incentives available to them at both the state and local levels — and even lobby to create new incentives to the extent possible. Our acclaimed Government Law & Lobbying Team members hold leadership positions within organizations like Enterprise Florida (the economic development engine for the State of Florida) and local economic development organizations such as the Miami-Dade County Beacon Council, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance, and the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County. Our team members are also active in local Chambers of Commerce and other community organizations that ensure the firm’s connectivity to centers of influence throughout the state.
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods can in many cases be less costly than engaging in traditional litigation. Becker attorneys are experienced in a variety of disciplines in ADR including mediation and arbitration, and several Becker attorneys are Florida Supreme Court certified mediators.
The role of the mediator is to reduce obstacles to communication, assist in the identification of issues and exploration of alternatives, and otherwise facilitate voluntary dispute resolution. The mediator is a neutral and impartial third person who acts to encourage and facilitate the resolution without prescribing what it should be. It is an informal and non-adversarial process intended to help disputing parties reach a mutually acceptable agreement.
As the most formal alternative to litigation, arbitration is generally considered a more efficient process than litigation because it is quicker, less expensive, and provides greater flexibility of process and procedure. The decision of the arbitrator at the end of the hearing is final and binding.
Becker attorneys provide practical, productive solutions to the sometimes complex legal and business challenges facing our insurance industry clients when they look to acquire or dispose of insurance operations, or restructure or recapitalize to achieve their goals.
Our experienced team’s skills and expertise include the important planning and preparation necessary to navigate the transaction process, assist with structuring and negotiating the transaction, prepare the deal documents, and assist with due diligence and scheduling requirements, and complete our insurance industry clients’ transactions on terms that promote, protect and preserve the value of the transaction.
Our attorneys have advised clients on a variety of strategic transactions across a range of insurance industry sectors and segments, including life, health, P&C, InsurTech, FinTech, reinsurance, captives, MGAs/MGUs, brokers, third party administrators and other intermediaries, including mergers and stock and asset acquisition and divestiture transactions, joint ventures, private equity and venture capital investments, leveraged buy-outs, spin-offs and split-offs and recapitalizations and restructurings.
In our role as a forward-thinking advisor to our clients, we recognize and work with our clients to address the convergence of technology and the insurance industry, including the opportunities and challenges presented by InsurTech and FinTech transactions and organic and transactional privacy and cyber-security concerns, as well as issues relating to big data ownership, and social media and intellectual property.
In addition to transactional services, leveraging the capabilities of our other professionals, we provide our insurance industry clients with advice and assistance regarding formation, financing, corporate governance, employment and compensation, litigation, real estate and other issues relevant to their businesses.