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Why Hire an Attorney to Collect Unpaid Florida Homeowner Assessments?

On Behalf of | Jun 17, 2019 | Firm News |

Bldg at night

Both homeowners’ associations (HOAs) and condominium associations (COAs) are tasked with a number of important duties, including the maintenance and upkeep of their respective communities. In addition, they have to verify that ownership and activities are in compliance with all CC&Rs, which are the covenants, conditions, and restrictions that apply to a community, and are listed in the governing documents of the association.

One of the arduous tasks HOAs and COAs face is collecting unpaid assessments. Retaining a West Palm Beach community association and HOA lawyer can help with a number of these duties, including collecting unpaid assessments. Our team of attorneys at Pincus & Currier, LLP, have years of experience helping homeowner and condo associations across Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade counties, as well as in other parts of the state.

Imposing Assessments and Collecting Unpaid Fees

HOAs have the authority to impose monthly dues to all unit owners in order to cover a number of different fees for repairs, upkeep, and maintenance. These fees may be allocated to pay for community security, maintaining the landscaping, trash pickup, and more. They can also cover community facilities like a pool, gym, community center, or even a golf course.

There may be times when an HOA needs to impose special assessments. There may be situations where homeowners want to challenge these assessments. Some owners may even go to court in order to challenge an assessment. At Pincus & Currier, LLP, we can represent your Florida homeowner association during board meetings as well as litigation when the need arises.

What Happens When Assessments are Unpaid?

When assessments are unpaid, Florida homeowners’ association law allows for the HOA to impose a lien on the property. A homeowner has 45 days to pay the assessment, while condo owners have 30 days. If an HOA wants to proceed with a foreclosure, they are required to go through a formal judicial foreclosure process. Unit owners can avoid this by making a qualifying order before a judgment is rendered or challenging it in court.

Some homeowners assume they are not responsible for existing unpaid assessments when they purchase a new place. However, Florida Statutes §718.116 provides that an owner is jointly and severally liable with the prior owner for unpaid assessments that are due up to the time the title is transferred. There are some limitations and exceptions, which is why it’s important to speak with a condo association lawyer who can advise whether or not the new owner is responsible for the unpaid assessments.

How Florida Community Association Lawyers Can Help

There are a number of different ways our community association lawyers at Pincus & Currier, LLP, can assist. We can help with any of the following:

  • Demand letters
  • Liens and assessment lien foreclosures
  • Collecting unpaid fees, debts, and assessments
  • Seizure
  • Lawsuits
  • Fair debt collection laws
  • Bank mortgage foreclosure actions
  • Special individual assessments
  • Attorney’s fees and costs under HOA documentation and Florida law

Contact a Community HOA Lawyer in Florida

Collecting unpaid assessments is an important part of an HOA’s duties to protect the association as well as safeguard members’ property values. Unpaid assessments are not fair to members who are paying their assessments as ordered. Contact Pincus & Currier, LLP, today at 561-868-1340 to schedule a consultation. Let us help your HOA or COA with collecting unpaid assessments and more.