CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATIONS
EDUCATION
THIS IS IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR ALL OWNERS AND BOARD MEMBERS LIVING IN CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATIONS REGULATED BY FLORIDA STATUTES FS 718.

RECORD REQUEST

RECORDS request 718.111(12) 
Owners have the right to inspect the official records of the condominium under Florida Statute Section 718.111(12) within 5 working days of written request -- certified mail return receipt. (You must have a receipt of the written request). You should list the Florida Statute number and section and describe the records as stated in the statute. 

 

See REQUEST TO ACCESS ASSOCIATION RECORDS (DIVISION FORM)

 

The official records of the association are open to inspection and copying by any association member and shall be made available to a unit owner within 5 working days after receipt of a written request. If you are not provided with access to the records as requested with a second attempt by certified mail (See FS 718.501(1)(d) 7.) please contact the Division. H 995 created -- effective October 2008 -- subpoena power for the Division to require production of requested records.

 

If you make a record request, always state that you want to "INSPECT" the records, don't ask to get copies. The association (or CAM) can't charge you for inspecting the records, only for making copies. And since the new law, effective July 1, 2013, allows you to bring your own scanning (copying) device to the inspection, you can actually get your copies for free, if you make copies with your own device.

 

If it's the CAM that gives you grief over your record request make sure you remind him/her of the new provision in FS 486.436(2)(b)7. Violating any provision of chapter 718, chapter 719, or chapter 720 during the course of performing community association management services pursuant to a contract with a community association as defined in s. 468.431(1). File a complaint with CAM Licensing. No more excuse: "I acted on orders of the board!" CAMs can now be held liable for their own actions!


FS 718.501(1)(d) 7.  If a unit owner presents the division with proof that the unit owner has requested access to official records in writing by certified mail, and that after 10 days the unit owner again made the same request for access to official records in writing by certified mail, and that more than 10 days has elapsed since the second request and the association has still failed or refused to provide access to official records as required by this chapter, the division shall issue a subpoena requiring production of the requested records where the records are kept pursuant to s. 718.112.


ARBITRATION RULING ACCESS TO RECORDS

Ramsey Agan and Grace Agan, v. Plaza East Association, Inc.

Case No. 2003-09-2374

 


FS 718.111(12)  OFFICIAL RECORDS (NEW July 1, 2013)

(a)  From the inception of the association, the association shall maintain each of the following items, if applicable, which shall constitute the official records of the association:

1.  A copy of the plans, permits, warranties, and other items provided by the developer pursuant to s. 718.301(4).

2.  A photocopy of the recorded declaration of condominium of each condominium operated by the association and of each amendment to each declaration.

3.  A photocopy of the recorded bylaws of the association and of each amendment to the bylaws.

4.  A certified copy of the articles of incorporation of the association, or other documents creating the association, and of each amendment thereto.

5.  A copy of the current rules of the association.

6.  A book or books which contain the minutes of all meetings of the association, of the board of administration, and of unit owners, which minutes must be retained for at least 7 years.

7.  A current roster of all unit owners and their mailing addresses, unit identifications, voting certifications, and, if known, telephone numbers. The association shall also maintain the electronic mailing addresses and the numbers designated by unit owners for receiving notice sent by electronic transmission of those unit owners consenting to receive notice by electronic transmission. The electronic mailing addresses and telephone numbers must be removed from association records if consent to receive notice by electronic transmission is revoked. However, the association is not liable for an erroneous disclosure of the electronic mail address or the number for receiving electronic transmission of notices.

8.  All current insurance policies of the association and condominiums operated by the association.

9.  A current copy of any management agreement, lease, or other contract to which the association is a party or under which the association or the unit owners have an obligation or responsibility.

10.  Bills of sale or transfer for all property owned by the association.

11.  Accounting records for the association and separate accounting records for each condominium which the association operates. All accounting records shall be maintained for at least a period of not less than 7 years. Any person who knowingly or intentionally defaces or destroys accounting records required to be created and maintained by this chapter during the period for which such records are required to be maintained, or who knowingly or intentionally fails to create or maintain such accounting records required to be maintained by this chapter, with the intent of causing harm to the association or one or more of its members, is personally subject to a civil penalty pursuant to s. 718.501(1)(d). The accounting records must shall include, but are not limited to:

a.  Accurate, itemized, and detailed records of all receipts and expenditures.

b.  A current account and a monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly statement of the account for each unit designating the name of the unit owner, the due date and amount of each assessment, the amount paid upon the account, and the balance due.

c.  All audits, reviews, accounting statements, and financial reports of the association or condominium.

d.  All contracts for work to be performed. Bids for work to be performed are also be considered official records and must be maintained by the association.

12.  Ballots, sign-in sheets, voting proxies, and all other papers relating to voting by unit owners, which must be maintained for 1 year from the date of the election, vote, or meeting to which the document relates, notwithstanding paragraph (b).

13.  All rental records, if the association is acting as agent for the rental of condominium units.

14.  A copy of the current question and answer sheet as described in s. 718.504.

15.  All other records of the association not specifically included in the foregoing which are related to the operation of the association.

16.  A copy of the inspection report as provided in s. 718.301(4)(p).

 

(b)  The official records of the association must be maintained within the state for at least 7 years. The records of the association shall be made available to a unit owner within 45 miles of the condominium property or within the county in which the condominium property is located within 5 working days after receipt of written request by the board or its designee. However, such distance requirement does not apply to an association governing a timeshare condominium. This paragraph may be complied with by having a copy of the official records of the association available for inspection or copying on the condominium property or association property, or the association may offer the option of making the records available to a unit owner electronically via the Internet or by allowing the records to be viewed in electronic format on a computer screen and printed upon request. The association is not responsible for the use or misuse of the information provided to an association member or his or her authorized representative pursuant to the compliance requirements of this chapter unless the association has an affirmative duty not to disclose such information pursuant to this chapter.

   

(c) The official records of the association are open to inspection by any association member or the authorized representative of such member at all reasonable times. The right to inspect the records includes the right to make or obtain copies, at the reasonable expense, if any, of the member. The
association may adopt reasonable rules regarding the frequency, time, location, notice, and manner of record inspections and copying. The failure of an association to provide the records within 10 working days after receipt of a written request creates a rebuttable presumption that the association willfully failed to comply with this paragraph. A unit owner who is denied access to official records is entitled to the actual damages or minimum damages for the association’s willful failure to comply. Minimum damages are $50 per calendar day for up to 10 days, beginning on the 11th working day after receipt of the written request. The failure to permit inspection entitles any person prevailing in an enforcement action to recover reasonable attorney fees from the person in control of the records who, directly or indirectly, knowingly denied access to the records. Any person who knowingly or intentionally defaces or destroys accounting records that are required by this chapter to be maintained during the period for which such records are required to be maintained, or who knowingly or intentionally fails to create or maintain accounting records that are required to be created or maintained, with the intent of causing harm to the association or one or more of its members, is personally subject to a civil penalty pursuant to s. 718.501(1)(d). The association shall maintain an adequate number of copies of the declaration, articles of incorporation, bylaws, and rules, and all amendments to each of the foregoing, as well as the question and answer sheet as described in s. 718.504 and year-end financial information required under this section, on the condominium property to ensure their availability to unit owners and prospective purchasers, and may charge its actual costs for preparing and furnishing these documents to those requesting the documents. An association shall allow a member or his or her authorized representative to use a portable device, including a smartphone, tablet, portable scanner, or any other technology capable of scanning or taking photographs, to make an electronic copy of the official records in lieu of the association’s providing the member or his or her authorized representative with a copy of such records. The association may not charge a member or his or her authorized representative for the use of a portable device. Notwithstanding this paragraph, the following records are not accessible to unit
owners:

  
1. Any record protected by the lawyer-client privilege as described in s. 90.502 and any record protected by the work-product privilege, including a record prepared by an association attorney or prepared at the attorney’s express direction, which reflects a mental impression, conclusion, litigation strategy, or legal theory of the attorney or the association, and which was prepared exclusively for civil or criminal litigation or for adversarial administrative proceedings, or which was prepared in anticipation of such litigation or proceedings until the conclusion of the litigation or proceedings.

  
2. Information obtained by an association in connection with the approval of the lease, sale, or other transfer of a unit.

  
3. Personnel records of association or management company employees, including, but not limited to, disciplinary, payroll, health, and insurance records. For purposes of this subparagraph, the term “personnel records” does not include written employment agreements with an association employee or management company, or budgetary or financial records that indicate the compensation paid to an association employee.

  
4. Medical records of unit owners.

  
5. Social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, e-mail addresses, telephone numbers, facsimile numbers, emergency contact information, addresses of a unit owner other than as provided to fulfill the association’s notice requirements, and other personal identifying information of any person, excluding the person’s name, unit designation, mailing address, property address, and any address, e-mail address, or facsimile number provided to the association to fulfill the association’s notice requirements. Notwithstanding the restrictions in this subparagraph, an association may print and distribute to parcel owners a directory containing the name, parcel address, and telephone number of each parcel owner. However, an owner may exclude his or her telephone number from the directory by so requesting in writing to the association. The association is not liable for the inadvertent disclosure of information that is protected under this subparagraph if the information is included in an official record of the association and is voluntarily provided by an owner and not requested by the association.

  
6. Electronic security measures that are used by the association to safeguard data, including passwords.

  
7. The software and operating system used by the association which allow the manipulation of data, even if the owner owns a copy of the same software used by the association. The data is part of the official records of the association.

  

(d)  The association shall prepare a question and answer sheet as described in s. 718.504, and shall update it annually.

(e)1.  The association or its authorized agent is not required to provide a prospective purchaser or lienholder with information about the condominium or the association other than information or documents required by this chapter to be made available or disclosed. The association or its authorized agent may charge a reasonable fee to the prospective purchaser, lienholder, or the current unit owner for providing good faith responses to requests for information by or on behalf of a prospective purchaser or lienholder, other than that required by law, if the fee does not exceed $150 plus the reasonable cost of photocopying and any attorney's fees incurred by the association in connection with the response.

2.  An association and its authorized agent are not liable for providing such information in good faith pursuant to a written request if the person providing the information includes a written statement in substantially the following form: "The responses herein are made in good faith and to the best of my ability as to their accuracy."


CONDO EDUCATION