Jacksonville, FL asked in Business Law and Civil Rights for Florida

Q: When on a FL HOA board when can new rules be implemented and is a lawyer needed to have new rules added or rules update

I'm currently in a HOA board and we are trying to figure out what rules/by lawns are currently in place. How can we change them/ modify them and how to move forward. One board member says to make any changes we have to have a lawyer and then have a vote. I'd like clarification on what can a board do and not do when related to the bylawns

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3 Lawyer Answers
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
Answered
  • Freeeport, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: A lawyer is probably not required, but the board member who says that perhaps figures that a lawyer is more apt to be able to spell "bylaws".

Bruce Alexander Minnick agrees with this answer

Linda Liang
Linda Liang
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Boca Raton, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: Having a lawyer Is almost never mandatory. But if you want to know whether modification may render the rules invalid in court of law, a lawyer will be helpful.

Bruce Alexander Minnick agrees with this answer

A: HOA documents are contracts. Decades ago the Florida Supreme Court issued an advisory stating community association managers could be committing the unlicensed practice of law for revising and/or amending HOA documents. The advisory included a warning to board members as well. I do not recommend the HOA make any changes without a lawyer. I have seen some horrible consequences, including litigation, over changes by well-intended board members. You also have a fiduciary duty to seek the advice of an attorney. Many association law firms provide valuable services, such as free board member certification.

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