Community Counselor March 24th, 2007

Question: Does Florida law require me to give my condominium association a key to my condominium unit?

Chapter 718 of the Florida Statutes does not specifically state condominium owners must surrender a copy of their keys to their association. Nevertheless, Florida Statute §718.111(5) grants condominium associations an “irrevocable right” to access each unit during reasonable hours for the maintenance, repair or replacement of any common elements or of any portion of a unit required to be maintained by the association. This irrevocable right of access also allows access to your unit “as necessary to prevent damage to the common elements or to a unit.”

Question: I am on the Board of Directors of my homeowners’ association. Recently, a recall by “written agreement” that was initiated by some of our homeowners failed. Can these same homeowners use the ballots from this prior failed recall for another recall effort?

Answer: Validly executed written ballots maybe reused in one subsequent recall effort if it occurs within 120 days after the date each respective ballot was executed.

Question: I am a new member on the Board of Directors of my condominium association. Our Declaration of Condominium forbids pets and the Board wants to pass a rule allowing one pet, is this proper?

For both condominium and homeowner associations, the passage of a Rule that conflicts with the terms of a Declaration is improper and unenforceable. Invalid Rules can expose an association to liability if enforcement efforts are undertaken. When drafting Governing Document amendments remember the “pecking order” of priority starts with the United States Constitution followed by Federal law, then The State of Florida Constitution. Thereafter, Florida state law is next, followed by county/municipal ordinances. Finally, the order of priority reaches an association’s Governing Documents. Within the Governing Documents of each community association, the Declaration has the highest priority followed by the Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws and lastly the Rules & Regulations.


Joshua Gerstin, Esq. is the Managing Partner of the Gerstin Associates law firm located at:
1499 West Palmetto Park Rd., Suite 412, Boca Raton, FL 33486.
To submit a question to the Community Counselor, you can call, write or fax at:
Telephone number is: (561) 750-0841, Fax: (561)750-8185, email:

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