Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes
Frequently Asked Questions - Homeowners' Associations
Arbitration is a proceeding where a neutral third person, called an arbitrator, considers the facts and arguments presented by the parties and renders a decision. The following information is intended to address basic questions or concerns you may have about the laws governing Homeowners’ Associations, Chapter 720, Florida Statutes. In no way should the following information be relied upon as or substituted for legal advice.
1. Is mediation for any homeowners' association disputes still available through the Division?
No. The Legislature amended section 720.311, Florida Statutes, to provide that parties to homeowners' association disputes may use private mediators to assist them in resolving their issues.Certified mediators may be selected by visiting the Supreme Court's website at www.flcourts.org/gen_public/adr/index.shtml.The private mediation program replaced the Division's mandatory HOA mediation program.
2. When is arbitration required?
Arbitration through the Division's Arbitration Program is required for all homeowners' association recall and election disputes, prior to filing a lawsuit.
3. What is the cost of arbitration for a homeowners' association recall or election dispute?
For homeowners' association recall and election disputes, the cost includes a $200 filing fee that must accompany the petition for arbitration, plus the Department's fee that is invoiced at the conclusion of the proceeding.The Department's fee will be an amount adequate to cover all costs and expenses incurred by the Department in conducting the arbitration proceeding.Please note, if you lose in arbitration, you may have to pay the other side's attorney's fees and costs.
4. Where do I find forms for homeowners' association recall and election arbitration disputes?
All HOA arbitration forms may be found at the Division's Homeowners' Association web page at http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/lsc/homeowners.html. If you have any questions regarding what form to use or about the arbitration process in general, please contact the Division at 850.414.6867.
The arbitration forms may also be obtained by writing:
Department of Business and Professional Regulation
Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes - Arbitration Section
1940 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1029