THE NEW LAWS: DEVELOPERS ARE PROTECTED YET AGAIN
Eric Glazer, Esq.
Published May 8, 2023
When a community gets turned over from developer control to unit
owner control, the unit owners typically hire experts to
determine whether or not the developer has breached their
warranty by turning over the property with construction
defects. This year, on April 13, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed
Senate Bill No. 360 into law wherein the legislature just
reduced your right to sue the developer for construction defects
and Florida Building Code violations.
Lawsuits for construction defects must always be filed within 4
years. The question is within 4 years of what? The law provided
that the 4 years began to run from the latest of the occurrence
of certain events. This year, the legislature changed this to
the earliest of certain events. The legislature provided
yet a further limitation. The law was also that you could sue
for up to 10 years, so long as it was within 4 years of the
occurrence of the latest event. Now, not only does the 4 years
begin to run earlier, but also the 10 years was reduced to 7
While these changes should have already been enough of a gift
for developers and contractors, the legislature decided to go
even further. The law used to allow a lawsuit by the
association for Florida Building Code violations. The law now
requires a certain threshold to be obtained before such a
lawsuit can be initiated. It requires that the violation is
“material.” The statute defines “material” to mean a violation
that has resulted, or may reasonably result, in physical harm to
a person or significant damage to the performance of the
building. Damage to the building is not enough, now it must be
significant. If the building code violation caused by the
developer is not significant, the association has no cause of
In addition to the foregoing, Florida changed the statute of
limitations on negligence actions to two years instead of four.
Moreover, the new law changes
Florida's apportionment standard from a pure comparative
negligence approach to a modified comparative negligence
approach. Under the new law, if a jury finds that a
plaintiff is more than 50% at fault for their own harm, then the
plaintiff is barred from recovering any damages from any
More and more is being done by our Florida Legislature to
prevent access to a courtroom by plaintiffs. Some believe it’s
a real scary time in our state while the defense bar believes
this was necessary to stop frivolous lawsuits from being filed.
What’s for sure and certain is that developers are being
protected yet again. Thoughts?
HOA & Condo Blog
Eric Glazer graduated
from the University of Miami School of Law in 1992 after
receiving a B.A. from NYU. He has practiced community
association law for three decades and is the owner of
Glazer and Sachs, P.A. a five attorney law firm with
offices in Fort Lauderdale and Orlando.
Eric is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in
Condominium and Planned Development Law.
Since 2009, Eric has been the host of Condo Craze
and HOAs, a weekly one hour radio show that airs at 11:00 a.m.
each Sunday on 850 WFTL.
Eric is the first attorney in the State of
Florida that designed a course that certifies condominium and
HOA residents as eligible to serve on a Board of Directors and
has now certified more than 20,000 Floridians all across the
state. He is certified as a Circuit Court Mediator by The
Florida Supreme Court and has mediated dozens of disputes
between associations and unit owners. Eric also devotes
significant time to advancing legislation in the best interest
of Florida community association members.