Use of Emergency Powers During COVID-19

By Siegfried Rivera

The State of Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation issued Emergency Order 20-04, suspending the limitation included within sections 718.1265(1) and 720.316(1), Florida Statutes, which allows condominium associations and homeowner associations to declare a state of emergency upon a “response to damage caused by an event.” The emergency powers available to condominium and homeowner associations’ boards of administration described in section 718.1265(1)(a)-(j) and section 720.316(1)(a)-(h), Florida Statutes, are now available in response to the COVID-19 outbreak to help protect the health, safety and welfare of the association, unit owners, unit owners’ family members, tenants, guests, agents, or invitees. Exercising emergency powers allows a board of directors to perform duties such as conducting board and membership meetings with notice given in a practical manner, name interim assistant officers during the state of emergency to accommodate the incapacity or unavailability of one of the officers, implement a disaster plan which may include determining that portions of the property are unavailable for entry or occupancy.

The order also tolls the deadlines for financial reporting requirements for associations during the current state of emergency. Click here to access the complete order. Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding this order or the impact of COVID-19 on your community.