By Eric Glazer, Esq.

Published August 30, 2021


About ten years ago I got my butt kicked in a Condominium case before the Florida Supreme Court.  The name of the case is Cohn v. Grand Condo. Ass'n, Inc., 62 So. 3d 1120, 1121 (Fla. 2011).  The Grand was a large mixed use condo with 1,200 units, built in 1986.  800 units were residential and 400 were commercial.   The bylaws allowed the commercial owners to elect a majority of the board.  Twenty-one years later, in 2007, a new law was passed that says despite what the bylaws said, if residential units outnumber the commercial units, the residential  unit owners elect a majority of the Board.  The commercial unit owners appealed, stating that this is unconstitutional as it violates the contracts clause.  The Florida Supreme Court really made the case very simple.  It asked; do the governing documents adopt the Florida Condominium statutes as they exist in 1986 when the condo was built, or do they also adopt amendments to The Florida Statutes as they occur from time to time?  Since the governing docs at The Grand only adopted the 1986 statute and there was no Kaufman or as amended from time to time language, applying the statute at The Grand would be considered unconstitutional.


In my classes, I always taught that the holding in the Grand has wide reaching effect and that Boards should be careful about using a statute to take the rights of owners away, if your governing documents pre-date the statute and you don’t have Kaufman language or as amended from time to time language.


A new case from Florida’s 3rd DCA agrees with me.    In De Soleil South Beach Residential Condominium Association, Inc. v. De Soleil South Beach Association, Inc., 2021 WL 2212867, at *4 (Fla.App. 3 Dist., 2021) the court said that it was error for the association to suspend the voting rights of delinquent owners, where the Declaration of Condominium at issue here was recorded and became effective in 2006. The Condominium Act, Section 718.303, Florida Statutes, was amended in 2010 to add subsection (5), for the first time permitting an association to “suspend the voting rights of a member due to nonpayment of any monetary obligation.” Prior to that amendment, the Condominium Act did not give an association that right or remedy to impair or suspend the voting rights of its members for nonpayment and the declaration of condominium did not contain Kaufman language.

It is imperative that Board members know if their documents contain the magic words.  If they don’t, you may not have all the rights and remedies at your disposal that you think you do.

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About HOA & Condo Blog

Eric Glazer

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.

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