Associations discouraged from having members assist with duties that may involve potential liability
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 What professional accomplishment makes you the most proud? After three years of serving on the Grievance Committee for the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors, I was asked to sit on the Professional Standards Committee. This committee mediates or holds hearings on arbitrations between Realtor members and members of the public working with Realtors. I am pleased to have accomplished that goal. What separates you from other Realtors? My customer service, work ethic and strict attention to detail are unparalleled.
Which neighborhoods/ Does the law require homeowners’ insurance in homeowners or condominium associations? No. But don’t stop reading here…. Over the past several years, the Florida legislature has made many changes to homeowner and condominium association law. A few years ago, homeowners’ insurance was required, then it wasn’t. What about now? Are owners required to have insurance on their houses or condominiums? It depends. Whether or not homeowners’ insurance is required is dependent on your association’s areas are your specialties? Lighthouse Point and East Fort Lauderdale to Boca Raton. Describe your working style: I take the time to learn my customers’ real estate goals, and then I work to achieve those goals for them. What advice do you have for buyers? This is a very competitive market: Be prepared with your finances before you start looking for a home. Submit strong offers supported by lender approval or proof of funds for cash offers. What advice do you have for sellers? It’s important to price your home properly from the beginning otherwise your declaration of covenants, conditions and restrictions (HOA) or your association’s declaration of condominium (condo association). If your “declaration” requires owners to have insurance, then you must have it. As vice-president, one of my duties is helping out with the landscaping of our association. May I ask an owner to help? I would not recommend it. There are far too many reasons to squeeze in here. However, one ex- listing may not get the attention it deserves. Are you involved with any charitable organizations? Food for the Poor CALL (954) 304-4424 • EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org • VISIT JulieMahfood.com PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT MANAGER ADVERTISING DESIGNER SPECIAL SECTIONS WRITER SENIOR SALES MANAGER REAL ESTATE ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Broward and Palm Beach Counties Dade County & Out of Area ample is: the owner trips and falls and breaks his o her leg while performing landscaping services for the association. I could see multiple angles of potential liability for the association in having its owners perform services for the association and would not recommend it. During board meetings of our association, owners are constantly stifled from speaking and asking questions. I am always told by the board that my questions must pertain to agenda items only; however, anything I ever want to talk about is never on the agenda. I am told
MARIA SALES to submit my other questions to the management company, which never responds. Isn’t the board required to address me and answer my questions at board meetings? What can I do? The law requires that owners be given the opportunity to speak at board meetings; however, the board may pass reasonable rules and regulations concerning how the meetings are conducted. Such a reasonable rule may include restricting owner questions and statements to agenda items only. So if you want to talk about a non-agenda item, you
GARRETT A. FOSTER
MICHAEL D. ROSS 954-425-1642 954-425-1029 954-425-1695 954-425-1234 954-425-1517 954-425-1640 may be out of luck, unless you obtain 20 percent of the total owners to petition the board to address an issue for the next board meeting. In condo associations, if you send a question or “inquiry” to the association or its management company via certified mail, return receipt requested, the association must respond, by law, within 30 days, or 60 days if a legal opinion is needed from its attorney. For homeowners’ associations, there are no requirements, unless such requirement is listed in the HOA’s governing documents.