When there are delin­quent own­ers in a condo as­so­ci­a­tion, ev­ery­one has to pay ex­tra for as­sess­ments

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - Homespot - Broward East - - CONDO & H.O.A. LAW -

Michael Bo­gen de­votes his le­gal prac­tice to rep­re­sent­ing hun­dreds of con­do­minium and home­owner as­so­ci­a­tions. Bo­gen, who is ad­mit­ted to prac­tice law in Florida, Wash­ing­ton, D.C., and Ne­vada, also is ad­mit­ted be­fore the United States District Court in the South­ern and Middle Dis­tricts of Florida. He is as­sis­tant ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Condo Coun­cil, which pro­vides education to over 1,000 as­so­ci­a­tion mem­bers.

EMAIL: col­umn@Condo Law.com We are look­ing to pur­chase a condo in an as­so­ci­a­tion that is dog friendly. How­ever, not many condo as­so­ci­a­tions al­low pets. My hus­band does have a dog des­ig­nated as an emo­tional sup­port an­i­mal, yet, our se­cond dog is not an emo­tional sup­port an­i­mal. Must the board al­low both dogs since one of them is con­sid­ered an emo­tional sup­port an­i­mal? If an owner or renter presents the as­so­ci­a­tion with a let­ter from their treat­ing physi­cian, psy­chol­o­gist, or so­cial worker, which states that the owner or renter re­quires the dog be­cause the owner/renter has a dis­abil­ity whose “ma­jor life ac­tiv­i­ties” are af­fected by the dis­abil­ity, and the dog helps al­le­vi­ate any af­fected “ma­jor life ac­tiv­i­ties,” the dog should be al­lowed by the board. “Ma­jor life ac­tiv­i­ties” in­clude ev­ery­day ac­tiv­i­ties such as eat­ing, sleep­ing, walk­ing, and other ba­sic ev­ery­day func­tions. If you have a doc­tor’s let­ter for only one dog, then the board should only ap­prove the one dog.

mort­gage on my prop­erty? Legally, a re­verse mort­gage is treated the same as a pur­chase money mort­gage or “reg­u­lar” mort­gage. A pur­chase money mort­gage is a loan given to you to pur­chase the prop­erty. A re­verse mort­gage is money given to you in ex­change for your prom­ise to give your prop­erty to a bank once you ei­ther move out or ex­pire. Some as­so­ci­a­tions’ gov­ern­ing doc­u­ments have pro­vi­sions that re­quire any owner to ob­tain prior ap­proval from the board of di­rec­tors be­fore ob­tain­ing a re­verse mort­gage. As a re­sult, there is no spe­cific an­swer Imay give to you other than look for a clause in your as­so­ci­a­tion’s gov­ern­ing doc­u­ments, or have your at­tor­ney an­a­lyze your as­so­ci­a­tion’s gov­ern­ing doc­u­ments. We have many units that are delin­quent in the pay­ment of their monthly as­sess­ments. As a re­sult, the board passed a bud­get that in­creases ev­ery­one else’s monthly as­sess­ments. The board stated this had to be done to make up for the short­age due to all of the delin­quent units. Is this le­gal? If the as­so­ci­a­tion’s in­come gets smaller and smaller, the as­so­ci­a­tion has to get its money from some­where. That “some­where” is the non-delin­quent own­ers. When there are delin­quent own­ers, all of the other own­ers gen­er­ally have to pay ex­tra to make up for that short­age. Un­for­tu­nately, this has been hap­pen­ing ev­ery­where.

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