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National Healthcare Decisions Day

April 13th, 2017

Posted in Estate & Personal Planning

This year, National Healthcare Decisions Day is not just a day but an event lasting from April 16 to 22.  This event is a national initiative to provide awareness and inspire adults to do or review their healthcare planning.
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How to Hold an Efficient Board Meeting: Tips and Strategies

March 31st, 2017

Posted in Condominium & Homeowner Association Law

Have you attended a Board meeting for a condominium, cooperative, or homeowner association that lasted for what seemed like hours on end?  If so, you are not alone.  Many communities spend more time than necessary at their board of director meetings.  Below are some tips and strategies on how to hold an efficient board of directors meeting.
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New Funding to Protect Florida’s Elderly Population

March 17th, 2017

Posted in Asset Protection,Estate & Personal Planning

Many of Florida’s senior citizens and families have reason to celebrate the 2017-2018 Annual Budget, which recommends $315.5 million for the Florida Department of Elder Affairs.
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Enforcement of Governing Documents – What are the Association’s Options?

March 3rd, 2017

Posted in Condominium & Homeowner Association Law

One of the most common topics we are asked by association clients is how to enforce the covenants and restrictions set forth in the association’s governing documents (declaration, articles of incorporation, bylaws, and rules and regulations).  Below is a brief review of an association’s options in regards to enforcement.
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Florida Sales Tax on Transient Rentals

February 17th, 2017

Posted in Business Law,IRS & Tax Information

Transient rentals are a thriving business in Florida, and one which many Florida real estate owners may utilize in an attempt to supplement their income.  Generally speaking, a transient rental is one that lasts for less than six (6) months.  What many property owners do not know is that transient rentals are subject to Florida sales tax.  Florida law requires that property owners charge to, and collect from, each transient guest an additional six percent (6%).
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Condominium and Homeowners’ Associations Should Carefully Review Insurance Policies to Ensure Coverage for Disability Discrimination Claims

February 3rd, 2017

Posted in Condominium & Homeowner Association Law

Generally, condominium and homeowners’ associations have obligations under state and federal laws to not discriminate against persons with disabilities.  Many forms of discrimination are intuitive, but others are not.  Under the Fair Housing Acts (both federal and state), discrimination includes the failure to permit reasonable modifications of existing premises, at the expense of the person requesting the modification, as may be necessary to afford a handicapped person full enjoyment of the premises.  Discrimination also includes the refusal to make reasonable accommodations in the “rules, policies, practices, or services” when such accommodations may be necessary to afford a handicapped person equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling. 
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Make a Resolution to Create or Review your Estate Plan

January 24th, 2017

Posted in Estate & Personal Planning

Often, people explain that they do not have enough assets to need an estate plan.  However, regardless of the value of assets you have, reviewing your personal financial plan from a legal and estate plan perspective is highly recommended.  In fact, even those who have substantial debt may be able to pass assets on to beneficiaries.  Everyone can benefit from creating and reviewing an estate plan including the elderly, married couples, parents with minor children and singles.
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Condominium and Homeowners’ Association Acts do not Always Trump a Community Association’s Governing Documents

January 6th, 2017

Posted in Condominium & Homeowner Association Law

A common question we receive from community association board members and managers is whether pertinent provisions of the governing documents or Florida Statutes control when a conflict exists between them.  Understandably, a layperson’s initial reaction might be, “the law is the law, so it obviously trumps any contrary provisions in the governing documents, right?”  The short answer is “no” because Article I, Section 10 of the United States and Florida Constitutions generally prohibit States from passing laws that impair contracts.  A recent case illustrates the importance of understanding that the Florida Statutes will not necessarily control over conflicting provisions of a community association’s governing documents.
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