Q&A: A Condo's Financial Report

Q Is a condominium required to produce an annual financial report? If they don't,  what is the recourse? What parts of a financial report do the owners have  access to? If the management doesn't allow me to see the report, what action  can I take?  

 —Concerned in Clearwater  

A “Yes, a financial report must be prepared annually within 90 days of fiscal year  end, or on such other date as set forth in the association’s bylaws. Associations with fewer than 75 units or under $100,000 in total  annual revenues need only prepare a report of cash receipts and expenditures,” explains Sean M. Ellis, Esq., from the Fort Myers-based law firm of Roetzel & Andress. “Larger associations must prepare financial statements which are either compiled,  reviewed, or audited, depending on the association’s total annual revenues. The association may elect to meet a higher or lower  standard of reporting than that which is required for its size, but in doing so  must comply with the requirements of the Condominium Act, and if choosing to  meet a lower standard the approval of a majority of the voting interests must  be obtained. In all events an association may not waive their financial  reporting requirements more than 3 consecutive years. Associations should  confer with their accounting professional to ensure their annual financial  statements both meet the appropriate level of reporting, and comply with the  uniform accounting standards which govern condominium association financial  reporting in Florida.  

 “The association must mail or hand deliver to each unit owner either a copy of  the financial report, or a notice that a copy of the report will be mailed or  hand delivered at no charge if the unit owner requests it in writing. Failure  to do so may subject the association to enforcement or fines by the Florida  Division of Condominiums, Timeshares and Mobile Homes, to whom a unit owner may  file a complaint. In addition, the financial reports are official records of  the association, and as such, a unit owner may make an official records request  for the financial report. A unit owner who is denied access to official records  after making written request is entitled to minimum damages of $50 per calendar  day for up to 10 days for the association’s willful failure to comply. The damages begin to run on the 11th working day  after receipt of the written request. The Condominium Act also provides for  recovery of reasonable attorney’s fees by the prevailing party in an enforcement action from the person in  control of the records who, directly or indirectly, knowingly denied access to  the records.”