Is the Writing on the Wall for Homeowners Association Recalls?

Filed Under: Legal Update

It appears inevitable, if not extremely likely, that changes are coming to Chapter 720 governing Homeowners Association recall of Board members. The 2019 Legislative session included a proposed change to Chapter 720 which would have required that homeowners participating in a Homeowners Association recall of Directors be limited to those who declare the property to be their homestead, effectively barring part-time residents from participating in a recall effort. This legislation failed, along with numerous other proposed changes. It now appears that new changes are on the table for 2020, indicating it may simply be a matter of when and not if significant changes will be made to the recall process.

HB 137 includes a proposed change to 720.303, Florida Statutes, significantly modifying the recall effort. First and foremost, the recall petition must be signed by at least 60% of the parcel owners whose parcels are their homesteads. The requirement for full-time residents is again on the table. The Board would also be required to hold a “referendum” within 30 business days after receipt of the petition including notice of the date by which ballots must be returned in accordance with the 14 day notice requirements of the statute. A majority of votes cast in connection with the referendum must be in favor of recall to trigger an obligation by the Board to notice and hold a meeting of the Board within five business days after the closing date for submitting ballots in the referendum.

With significant changes yet again on the table in 2020, Homeowners Associations should remain vigilant regarding upcoming legislative changes which will more than likely include changes to the Board recall procedure. Please be on the lookout for updates in our future newsletters.