There are Penalties for Condos Not Complying with the Web Portal Requirement by January 1, 2019

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There are just a few weeks left for Florida condominiums with 150 for more units to have a compliant web portal available for unit owners to access a laundry list of official records.  If they don’t comply with the new law, there will be consequences.  Some professionals mistakenly believe that there are none because the paragraph in the condominium statute requiring a compliant web portal does not specifically recite a penalty for noncompliance.  Perhaps the statute addition was in-artfully drafted, but there are significantly consequences already built into other parts of the statute which will be implicated by not having …

Attorney Bar Association President Steals from the Association

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Associations that have no organizational framework are more susceptible to bad acts by board members.  Even attorney bar associations have to make sure they have an acceptable organizational framework where board members can review records and oversee each other. Just two years ago Robin Haynes was named the youngest Washington State Bar Association President in its history.  Now, she one of the many board members who have been caught with their hands in the association’s cookie jar.  In addition to stealing tens of thousands from her law firms, she also took at least $1,500 from the bar association that she was …

New Florida Condo Owner Web Access to Official Records by January 1, 2019, makes sense

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There are just about two months left for Florida condominiums with 150 for more units to have a compliant web portal available for unit owners to access a laundry list of official records.  If they don’t comply with the new law, there will be consequences including possible civil, criminal and other implications.  Owners without the required web access can easily complain to the enforcing agency The Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR), or even sue the condo and will likely win with legal fees being reimbursable. Just in the last week, there were three news reports of improper conduct …

Florida Judicial System Taking on Bad Community Association Board Members

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According to leading Florida law firm Siegfried, Rivera, Hyman, Lerner, De La Torre, Mars, Sobel, PA, “[a]fter the change in the laws governing condominium associations and HOAs last year focusing on antifraud measures and avoiding conflicts of interest among board members, Florida law enforcement has been issued a mandate to take cases of association fraud extremely seriously and give them the resources they deserve.” That’s exactly what happened with William and Darlene Cox, the former president and treasurer of Lantana Homes HOA.  They stole at least $360,000 from the HOA back in 2016.  This was eventually discovered by new board members …

What to do when a Mom Steals up to $25k from your PTA?

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It happened again.  A woman, Kelli Angela Ridgway, has been charged with stealing money from the PTA at an Overland Park Elementary School.  Before her mug shot, she looked like any other mom volunteering her time on the PTA.   This theft happened in November 2016 from the PTA at John Diemer Elementary School in Kansas.  Considering she was just arrested, almost 2 years went by before the theft was discovered, evidence collected, police contacted and felony charges brought.  Two years is a long time when it comes to PTA’s.  Without organizational framework around the PTA, discovering fraud or theft by …

Nonprofit Board Members Steal Too – This Florida Board Member Took $2 Million

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The Rehabilitation Center for Children and Adults is a revered Florida charity that suffered a tremendous theft by a board member. The nonprofit provides outpatient physical, occupational and speech therapy.  Over 15 years, board member William Minor perpetrated the theft and the money is long gone.  Read More.  Sooner or later board members will finally accept the fact that without organizational framework around the board, thefts like this will continue to happen because there is no way for effective oversight.  With an Office of the Board in place, all the board members can watch each other.  There are ways to set …

Can Florida Association Board Members be Sued in Lawsuits? Absolutely.

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As Harris B. Katz, Esq., Managing Partner of Boca Raton law firm Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC., puts it “Unfortunately, it is a fairly common occurrence that Board members are brought into lawsuits as Defendants.” In his piece in the TC Palm he explains that there may be insurance covering you as a community association board member when you’re sued by a resident, you’re still named as a defendant and have to be represented by an attorney.  He goes on to explain that a legal doctrine called the “business judgement rule” should protect you from ultimately liability.  According to Attorney …

Athletic-Booster Clubs Need Framework to Avoid Fraud

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We’ve been talking about thefts by board members in community associations, PTAs/PTOs, and youth sport associations lately because they are all over the news.  Those organizations lack framework around them so this leaves board presidents, treasurers or other trusted advisors free to rob the association cookie jar.  Just in, an athletic-booster club president has stolen money from the association.  Nordonia Athletic Boosters Club, Bob Frankish, stole an unspecified amount of money from the organization.  Booster clubs collect a lot of money to support their youth sports programs.  They are no different than any of the other non profits mentioned above. …

More Booster Club and Youth Athletic Board Thefts Lead to Police Response

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“Over $500,000 was stolen by the president of the Springboro athletic boosters and about $70,000 that was stolen a few years ago by a volunteer on the Creekview Youth Soccer association,” so the police are trying to teach board members how to limit theft with organizational framework and protocols.  Office of the Board provides that instant framework that youth athletic board volunteers need. Click here to read more about the training. Office of the Board – Instant Framework for Sports Boards

Little League Association Board President takes $70k

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Here we go again.  Another board member of a youth sports association stealing money.  This time a board president, Leo Carlos, took $70,000 over 4 years.  Once again, no one had access to the association’s records.  Board members trusted Leo and he took advantage of that trust.  Some boards require dual signatures on checks, but what if both signers are in cahoots?  W’eve seen a lot of situations where boards require dual signatures and it becomes inconvenient and then not required in all cases.   The only way effectively to deter and root out fraud in association boards is to …