I have handled many cases in Florida for condo owners, homeowners and co-op owners that have claims against their associations. These cases are all handled on an hourly billing basis. Some cases settle with a strongly worded letter but others require a series of letters and litigation. This can get expensive for the condo or homeowner with limited resources. Unfortunately, associations pay their lawyers with dues that come from the other owners. In other cases the association law firm is being paid by the insurance company. While the association resources are not unlimited they can fight longer than the individual owner. A good attorney that focuses on representing owners should always try to convince the association that they should resolve the case amicably because the longer they fight the more they will ultimately pay. Many association Boards have been voted down after advising the owners that they paid out thousands of dollars after losing an owner lawsuit.
I caution my clients that even though we always try to resolve these matters quickly they need to be prepared for a fight. I rarely pursue litigation against Condo or Homeowner Associations unless we have a winnable case. In roof leak or water damage claims based upon the Condo Association’s failure to maintain the common elements, the condo association has a non-delegable duty and has very few defenses to our case. Likewise in dealing with pet restriction cases where the association’s discriminatory practices have failed to make reasonable accommodations under the Fair Housing Act the assocation is exposed to compensatory and punitive damages along with paying my client’s attorney fees. Despite this there are many condo and homeowner associations in south florida that either fail to seek out proper legal advice or simply ignore the relevant facts and applicable laws. As a result many cases that should be resolved quickly take much longer than expected. While these cases usually result in the association paying out a larger sum for damages and attorney fees, the delay often puts additional stress on the client both mentally and financially. Condo owners and homeowners contemplating litigation against their associations need to be prepared for this before filing suit against their association. The worst thing is for the client to exhaust their resources and fail to follow through on a winnable case.
The Law Offices of Herb M. Milgrim, P.A. is a Florida Law Firm that takes pride in representing Condo Owners, Homeowners and Cooperative Owners that have disputes or are contemplating Litigation or a Lawsuit against their Association. We provide prospective clients with a Free Case Evaluation. Once we have been retained we review all of the relevant documents and governing Florida Laws and advise our clients on the best course of action.
Remember that the Associations keep expensive Law Firms on retainer using your money. Before you try and fight the Association you should contact us to get a free case evaluation. We serve the legal needs of condo owners, homeowners and co-op owners throughout Broward, Dade and Palm Beach Counties, including Hollywood, Davie, Pembroke Pines, Hallandale, Sunny Isles, Aventura, North Miami, Boca Raton and West Palm Beach with two convenient office locations in Hollywood Florida and Boca Raton Florida. Call us now at 954-966-3900.