Requests by unit owners to review official records of their community association should not present any difficulties for Florida condo associations and HOAs, yet records requests often become needlessly contentious.
Associations in the state are required to allow access to their official records within 10 working days after receiving a written request from a unit owner or their authorized representative. They may establish reasonable rules specifying the frequency, time, location and manner of record inspection and copying, but they cannot deny access. Those that fail to comply may be subject to compensate the requesting owner with a minimum of $50 per calendar day beginning on the 11th day after receiving the written request.
Some of the most common documents requested for inspection are certified copies of plans, permits and warranties provided by the developer, as well as copies of the declaration, articles of incorporation, bylaws, rules and regulations, accounting records and insurance policies. Association members also have the right to request a roster of all residents, but information such as health records, social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, e-mail addresses, emergency contact information and other personal data are considered confidential records and should be omitted.
Legal documents involving ongoing litigation, information involving the sale or lease of units, personnel and salary records, and security information such as software passcodes used to safeguard the association’s data may not be accessible to members.
Association directors and property managers with any questions or concerns regarding member requests for official records inspections should always consult with highly qualified and experienced community association attorneys.
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