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Condo Association Parking Assignments Lost

Pompano Beach, FL |

When the developer was selling condos (several years ago), they assigned parking spaces to units. All units were assigned at least one parking space, and buyers could purchase additional assignments. Condo docs state that these parking assignments are not recorded information, but simply to be kept in the "Association Documents".

Fast forward to today, and the Association has lost the parking assignment information. In order to recreate the assignment sheets, the Association has asked all unit owners to supply proof of assignment. The difficulty here is the assignments were not recorded and are not easily found. Furthermore, several current owners were not the original purchasers so they do not have the original closing paperwork. The assignments aren't listed on the deeds either.

All "proven" assignments will be listed on the new assignment sheet, and any spots that are left over will be assigned back the developer (Developer still owns about 40% of the units). So if anyone can't find their paperwork, their parking space(s) might be assigned to the developer! I am a third-owner of my condo and I do not have the original assignment information for my unit. However, I contacted the original owner, and he said he doesn't have the paperwork anymore, but remembers that the unit had 2 parking spaces but doesn't remember which one, and actually knows the price which was paid (but they said "spoken word" is not proof). I also contacted the Developer (who conveniently for himself) also "lost" the closing papers. So, currently the association assigned me just one spot. It seems the association should have maintained documents which it failed to do, and now I am at a loss. What recourse do I have? Is it fair that the ALL unclaimed/unproved spots go back to the developer?

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Attorney answers 2

Posted

I am confident in saying I do not think this action would pass the "reasonableness" test and the association would be ruled against in a court of law or by arbitration. They either need to assign all units parking spots or none at all. While they can change the location of the assigned spots, taking them away all together is unreasonable.

The issue with your condo having an extra paid parking spot is a different matter. The payment should have triggered a recording of some sort of deed. Without any paperwork you have no evidence to prove your claim. Search the county's official records online database by the original owner's name to see if you can find it.

You should send a certified letter to the condo telling them of your dispute, your requested resolution and that you may exercise your right to arbitrate the matter per Fla. Stat. 718.1255 if not resolved.

This communication is not intended to create an attorney/client relationship. It is always recommended you consult an attorney in person to discuss your case. The Law Offices of Stage & Associates practices state-wide and represents homeowners and community associations. Please visit our website at www.stagelaw.com.

Asker

Posted

Thanks for your detailed response and explanation. For those units that did not supply any proof, they are assigning them ONE spot (per Condo docs, each unit should have minimum 1) even if they possibly had more but failed to keep documentation. There is no recorded documentation for any of the condo's in terms of parking assignments (several residents have searched through county databases and recording office). The parking assignments were lumped in with the purchase price of the condos, and the deed nor the title lists the assignments. There claim is that they are trying to make a reasonable attempt of recreating the parking assignment list. I understand their attempt, but what should happen to the unclaimed/unproven spots? The Developer's claim is that since these were never proven to be assigned, it still belongs to the Developer. My issue is that the neither the Developer, nor the Association maintained the records, and I just have a spoken statement from the original purchaser that my unit was assigned two parking spaces.

Posted

It certainly does not appear that the Association is acting correctly. I encourage you to seek the counsel of an attorney familiar with HOA and Condo Associations to fight on your behalf.