The tragic collapse of Champlain South Tower has prompted various changes state-wide in regards to condominium safety-reforms. Although just last week Florida passed its first ever state-wide condominium safety reform bill, on June 1, 2022 Miami-Dade County’s Board of County Commissioners released an ordinance establishing even more stringent procedures for the recertification process. The following are key takeaways:
- All buildings (except single-family homes, duplexes, and structures housing fewer than 10 people) must undergo recertification upon reaching 30 years of age and every 10 years thereafter.
- Local jurisdictions will provide buildings with a courtesy notice one and two years prior to their recertification anniversary.
- Buildings will also receive a reminder 90 days before the report submission due date of recertification deadline.
- The same notice schedule applies for the 10-year incremental recertifications.
- Buildings built between 1983-1986 are exempt from the 30-year recertification requirement, only if a 40-year recertification report for the building would be otherwise due before March 31, 2024, and such report is timely submitted.
- Within 90 days of the Notice of Required Inspection, a written report must be submitted to a building official certifying that the building is both structurally and electrically safe for continued occupancy. Submission of a report will also be deemed timely if submitted any time between two (2) years before the building’s recertification anniversary.
- Buildings defined as “minor structures” must have their report prepared by a professional engineer or architect registered in the State of Florida.
- Buildings greater than three stories or 50 feet in height must have the structural and electrical portions prepared separately by a professional structural engineer and a professional electrical engineer registered in Florida.
- A self-qualification letter must be included as part of the structural report attesting to the professional structural engineer’s experience in working with equivalent buildings.
- Associations for buildings that are declared unsafe are responsible for providing owners with a 24-hour written notice.
- Associations that fail to comply with the unsafe structure notice requirement will be liable for failure to provide such notice.
- Repairs deemed necessary by the professional engineer or architect must be completed 150 days from the date of notice.
- For repairs that require permits, buildings have 150 days from the date of notice to acquire necessary permits.
- The engineer or architect that performed the initial recertification must provide building officials a letter attesting that the building can continue safe occupancy during repairs every 180 days until repairs are completed.
- An amended recertification report must be submitted once all necessary repairs are finished.
- Penalties for failure to comply with the new law, such as authorizing building officials to disconnect electrical utilities for buildings whose safety is questionable, revoking written recertification reports that contain misrepresentations, and monetary fines in the amount of $200 per unit can be imposed.
We encourage all associations with questions about this new requirement to contact our office for clarification. Click here to access the Miami-Dade County ordinance.