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Fair Use and Distance Learning in the Time of COVID-19

March 24, 2020
Heidi Howard Tandy  |  COVID-19, Coronavirus

Copyright laws in the United States were created when nearly all duplication of content was done by corporate entities, schools or government offices in specific locations. While laws protecting creative works have been modified over time to envelop the Internet age, most primary and secondary educational institutions (and many colleges and universities) have not had to consider a scenario where all students attend classes remotely, through synchronous virtual classrooms and videoconferencing technology. 

The Florida Legislature Passes a Comprehensive Commercial Real Estate Property Receivership Act

March 23, 2020
Anthony J. Carriuolo  |  Commercial Real Estate, Bankruptcy

Commercial real estate is, of course, big business in Florida. And many constituents are financially dependent on it. Business owners and operators generate revenues while lenders advance monies to acquire those properties and provide working capital for operations.

Homeowners Association and Condominium Association Legislative Update

March 22, 2020
Jeffrey R. Margolis

The 2020 regular Florida legislative session ended on March 13, 2020.  Although several proposed bills relating to homeowners associations and condominium association were introduced during the regular session, only one bill, Senate Bill 476, was passed by the legislature and signed into law by the governor.  Senate Bill 476, which was signed into law by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, amends both Chapter 718, the Florida Condominium Act, and Chapter 720 which governs Homeowners Associations, proscribing certain prohibitions on parking of law enforcement vehicles.  Specifically, the statutes were amended to

Vlog: Coronavirus Pandemic: Understand your Insurance Coverages with the Insurance Team

March 22, 2020

Insurance Carrier Continuity Plans in the Era of COVID-19

March 19, 2020
Madelyn Rodriguez  |  COVID-19, Coronavirus

In response to the state of Florida’s COVID protocols and declaration of emergency, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) has issued an informational memorandum (OIR-20-03M) providing guidance and reporting requirements for all insurers and entities regulated by OIR.  To protect members of the public, insurance carriers have been directed to heed all recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and the Department of Health. OIR has directed all insurance carriers to

The Regulatory Impact of Florida’s COVID -19 Emergency Declaration

March 17, 2020
Sha`Ron James  |  COVID-19, Coronavirus

Stephen Covey said, “If there’s one thing that’s certain in business, it’s uncertainty,” and today his statement is proven loud and clear.  We are in an unprecedented time which calls for unprecedented measures, for the good of our families, our communities, and our state.  As communities prepare and brace for the effects of Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19”), it is important for businesses operating in Florida to understand Florida’s current emergency declaration and to assess the short and long-term impact it has on your organization and industry.   On March 9, 2020, Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order Number 20-52, declaring a state of emergency because

COVID-19: Considerations for Homeowners and Condominium Associations

March 15, 2020
Jeffrey R. Margolis  |  COVID-19, Coronavirus

With over 10 million Floridians living in a community association such as a condominium or homeowner’s association, Florida has more community associations than any other state.  With residents living in relatively close quarters to their neighbors and sharing common areas, there is a rising concern and heightened anxiety about contracting the COVID-19 virus which has been declared by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a global pandemic. As the outbreak continues to expand in the United States, including Florida, community associations should be

Fasten your seat belts: it’s going to be a bumpy ride for all aviation-related businesses.

March 11, 2020
Jordi Guso  |  COVID-19, Coronavirus

Last night, the federal government announced that starting tomorrow the United States will ban travel from most of Europe for 30 days due to the novel coronavirus. The announcement is a further blow to the airline industry that has already been rattled by declining demand. To put things in perspective, following the September 11 attacks, the airline industry lost approximately $19.6 billion in revenue between 2001 and 2002.  The International Air Transport Association now projects that revenue loss to the airlines from the

Don’t Ignore Those IRS Notices!

January 20, 2020
Bryan S. Appel and Mitchell W. Goldberg  |  IRS, Taxation, Internal Revenue Service

Condominium and Homeowners Association Transfer Fees; Limitations or Not

January 13, 2020
Jeffrey R. Margolis

Transfer fees are those fees a homeowner's or condominium association may charge a unit owner or homeowner in connection with the sale, lease or other transfer of a condominium unit or home. There are significant differences between transfer fees which are permitted for homeowner’s associations as compared against condominium associations. With respect to transfer fees for condominium associations, Florida law provides that transfer fees may not exceed $100.00 per applicant. Unlike condominium associations, there is no statutory limitation on transfer fees 

Florida Adopts Remote Online Notarizations

December 18, 2019
Barry D. Lapides and Gerardo Ortega

Starting on January 1st, 2020, Florida will become the twenty-first state to adopt remote online notarizations (RON), following Governor Ron DeSantis’ signing of House Bill 409 into law. An “online notarization”, as defined under Chapter 117 of the Florida Statutes, is any performance of a notarial act using electronic means in which the principal appears before the notary public by means of audio-video communication technology. The new law will eliminate the need to produce paper documents or personally meet with signers for all notarizations. Before taking advantage . . .

Developer Can Use Working Fund Contributions to Offset its Financial Obligations to a Homeowner Association

October 23, 2019
Jeffrey R. Margolis  |  Real Estate Development, Homeowners Association, Working Fund

It is common practice for developers to collect working fund contributions or initial contributions upon the sale of homes in communities operated by homeowner associations.  The amount of working fund contributions or initial contributions can be either a specific dollar amount or an amount equal to 2-3 months of association assessments.  In a recent opinion, a Florida appellate court ruled that such contributions may be used by the developer to offset the developer’s deficit funding obligation to the homeowner association.