15 05, 2020

New Notary Laws in Florida

Legislation, Real Estate Law|

Florida has new notary laws that went into effect January 1, 2020. Remote notarization is now permitted.  A notary will no longer have to physically (in person) witness the person sign the instrument requiring notarization, but instead notarization can be done through a video feed and record.

There are certain criteria that must be met to

16 09, 2019

Florida Appellate Court Muddles FAR/BAR’s Finance Contingency Putting Escrow Deposits at Risk

Contracts, Court Decisions of Importance, Real Estate Law|

In Florida, most residential real estate transactions utilize the form FAR/BAR Residential Contract for Purchase and Sale (“FAR/BAR Contract”). With over five million residential closings in Florida each year, the terms of the FAR/BAR contract impacts millions of transactions. Recently, the Fourth District Court of Appeals, in Florida Inv. Group 100, LLC v. Lafont, Case

6 09, 2017

Florida House Unanimously Passes Law Imposing Additional Regulations on Sober Houses

Real Estate Law|

The opioid epidemic has seen recovery residences, also referred to as “sober homes,” proliferate throughout Florida.  The boom in sober homes has also led to a lot of abuse and corruption.  Some sober home operators offer kickbacks to rehab centers for referrals — a practice known as patient brokering — and allow drug sales on

15 08, 2017

Fourth DCA Confirms Association Lien Foreclosure Valid Despite Pending Mortgage Foreclosure

Real Estate Law|

Despite a slowing in the number of Florida mortgage foreclosure cases, many community associations still face situations where a foreclosing lender fails to timely complete its foreclosure resulting in the property sitting abandoned and not contributing financially to the community.  As a result, many community associations are faced with a decision of whether to proceed

2 08, 2017

Does the First Amendment Apply to Condominiums?

Real Estate Law|

A common question asked by our clients is what can be done to stop unit owners from publishing false, negative, or harassing posts about the condominium association, its directors, members, or agents on internet mediums like Facebook or Nextdoor.  The reality is that unless such posts constitute threats, defamation, or are criminal in nature, a

16 01, 2017
  • reserve funding

Court Decision Clarifies HOA Developer Reserve Funding Obligations

Arias Bosinger, Community Association, Real Estate Law, Tenant/Landlord|

Last month, Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeals issued yet another opinion in Mackenzie v. Centex Homes, by Centex Real Estate Corp., Case No. 5D16-1254 (Fla. 5th DCA, December 22, 2016) reinforcing that a developer is obligated to contribute money to an association’s statutory reserve accounts prior to turnover, even when the developer has chosen

16 12, 2016
  • safe harbor

Rare Safe Harbor Victory for Homeowner Associations

Arias Bosinger, Community Association, Legislation, Real Estate Law|

In the case of Federal National Mtg. Ass’n. v. Mirabella at Mirasol HOA, Inc., Case No. 4D 15-4792 (Fla. 4th DCA, November 23, 2016), Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal relied on specific language in the Homeowner Association Act’s safe harbor section to rule in favor of a homeowner association over Federal National Mortgage Association (“FNMA”) in

2 12, 2016
  • community associations

New HUD Neighbor to Neighbor Discrimination Regulations Impact Community Associations

Arias Bosinger, Community Association, Legislation, Real Estate Law, Tenant/Landlord|

On September 13, 2016, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) released final regulations that change how the Federal Fair Housing Act (“Act”) is applied to quid pro quo and hostile environment housing claims within community associations. The new rules, some of which went into effect on October 14, 2016, affect what community

15 11, 2016
  • foreclosure

There are No Freebies in Life – Florida Supreme Court Declares Statute of Limitations Does Not Bar Banks From Foreclosing Mortgages

Arias Bosinger, Community Association, Real Estate Law, Tenant/Landlord|

In a highly anticipated ruling, the Florida Supreme Court has finally settled the issue of whether the statute of limitations bars a lender from foreclosing a mortgage more than five years in default. In Bartram v U.S. Bank National Association, Case No. SC14-1265, (Fla. November 3, 2016), the high Court was deciding whether to uphold

2 11, 2016
  • hoarding

Handling Hoarding in a Condominium Community

Arias Bosinger, Community Association, Real Estate Law, Tenant/Landlord|

Hoarding is becoming an increasingly common disorder that carries serious consequences for the afflicted, their family, and neighbors.  Hoarding has the potential to attract rodents, create fire hazards, and can threaten the health of occupants. While hoarding is dangerous for anyone, it is especially problematic for condominium associations where residents live so close together. Rather