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Florida Real Estate and Community Association Update: Navigating the Future of Estoppel Certificates Amid Proposed Statutory Changes

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Estoppel certificates play an important role in the Florida real estate transactions process. Not only do they provide buyers and sellers with certainty regarding monies owed at the time of sale, but they also provide Florida community associations (Homeowner Associations, Condominium Associations, and Cooperative Associations) with the ability to ensure that they are able to collect monies that are due and owing at the time of a real estate transaction.  

Legislative Changes Impacting Estoppel Certificates: SB-278 and HB-979

There were two bills that were making their way through the Florida legislature that would have had a substantial impact on the process of preparing estoppel certificates. The first bill was SB-278, and the second bill is HB-979.  

According to a recent update regarding the status of these bills, it appears that SB-278 is dead and will not become law. Of the two bills, SB-278 would have had the biggest impact on the estoppel certificate process. HB-979 is still proceeding through the legislative process. If passed into law, HB-979 will amend Section 718.116(8), Florida Statutes, Section 720.30851, Florida Statutes, and Section 719.106(6), Florida Statutes.   

Proposed Amendments and Their Effect on Estoppel Certificate Procedures

HB-979’s proposed changes include a requirement for all Associations to pass an “annual” resolution providing the Association with authority to charge a fee for preparing an estoppel certificate, a requirement to follow the specific statutory procedure in order to be able to collect a fee for preparing an estoppel certificate; the elimination of any and all other fees and charges, which include a convenience fee, an archive fee, a service fee, a processing fee, a delivery fee, a credit card fee, a certification fee, a third-party fee, or any other fee or charge, and a new process for the collection of the fees, if the property fails to close.    

Please note that HB-979 is still making its way through the legislature and might not become law. If it does become law, there could be additional changes to the bill. If you have any questions, please contact our firm for assistance.

Picture of Jackson Kracht, Esq.

Jackson Kracht, Esq.

Jackson Kracht is an experienced attorney who has been practicing law in Florida since 2002.  Mr. Kracht served as an Assistant State Attorney in and for the Twelfth Judicial Circuit in Sarasota County before moving on to private practice.

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