Q&A: On Our Terms

Q I am the president of a condominium association. One of our owners has requested that we amend our bylaws to provide for term limits for board members, requiring them to stay off the board for a year after serving three terms. Is this legal?

—Determined in Destin

A “I believe the amendment itself would be legal if properly approved by the board and membership. However, to me, it is not very Democratic,” says Rachel E. Frydman, Esq., managing member of The Frydman Law Group, PLLC in Plantation. “Florida Statutes Chapter 718 requires an election each year, or every other year, depending on the term limits. Part of the election process is the submission of an “Intent to Run” by all eligible persons interested in serving on the board.

“By amending the documents as described in the question, you are limiting one or more certain person’s ability to run for the board and serve, if elected. These persons may be the only eligible persons that desire to sit on the board in any given year. By such an amendment, if these persons are not allowed to serve, and no other owner is interested in serving, then the association is subject to receivership. My best advice to this board member, who has this questioning owner, is to tell the owner to focus on electing the best persons to serve on the board and not worry about a particular person(s) who continually serve on the board. Or better yet, this owner should get out there and run for the board. If there is a board member that a majority of the membership feel is not doing a good job then the law provides for the right to recall that board member.”