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Florida HOA. Ch 720. My bylaws say "The ballots prepared for…

Florida HOA. Ch 720. My...
Florida HOA. Ch 720. My bylaws say "The ballots prepared for the annual meeting shall list all prenominated Director candidates in alphabetical order. Ballots shall be mailed to all members with notice of the annual meeting and may be returned to the Association prior to the meeting, or cast at the annual meeting. " My manager has convinced the board to refuse to accept the ballots that are mailed out, and demand that members fill out separate ballots at the meeting. The way I read the bylaws, they have to accept the ballots they mailed out. Is there anything you see in the bylaw that allows them to refuse to accept the ballots they mail out?
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Answered in 11 minutes by:
11/19/2017
Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 125,785
Experience: JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

They cannot refuse to accept the ballots they mail out and if they are doing so, then you can file a suit called a declaratory judgment action and you can get an order to the board to follow the bylaws as written. They cannot refuse to accept the mail in ballots as your bylaws provide for them.

Please do not forget to leave positive feedback by clicking on the 5 stars at the top of your page, as the experts are not employees of the site and get no credit for spending time with customers unless they leave positive feedback. Thank you.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Interesting. So the board cannot dance around the language saying the ballots "may" be returned prior to the meeting or cast at the meeting is not a hard and fast requirement. They are bound by that language to accept the ballots. I would need a lawyer to file for a declaratory judgment? The manager wrote that into a "Annual Election Policies and Procedures" and then announced that the ballots would be refused at the board meeting. Could I file something against her license for that?

Thank you for your reply.

In this instance, may is used as an alternative form of sending in ballots, it is not used as a choice by the association.

You would not file anything against her license, that is not how this works I am afraid, you must go to court to file for the declaratory judgment if they are altering the balloting from what the bylaws provides for.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Oh well. You are saying I can file for the judgment, or have an attorney do it?

Thank you for your reply.

You can file on your own if you are familiar enough with drafting the complaint you need to file in court and also the motion for temporary injunction or emergency order, since the election is coming and you need to get the declaratory order quickly or stop the election from taking place.

However, FL courts are much more sympathetic to attorneys, so it increases your chances using a local attorney.

Please do not forget to leave positive feedback by clicking on the 5 stars at the top of your page, as the experts are not employees of the site and get no credit for spending time with customers unless they leave positive feedback. Thank you.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
I will gladly rate you shortly You are always very insightful and reassuring. That said, the statutes say the election must run according to the governing documents. The board voted this refusal to accept the ballots into the "Annual Election Policies and Procedures" by the board. Could the board try to qualify this document as part of the governing documents and have the declaratory judgment thrown out?

Thank you for your reply.

The board cannot change the bylaws without vote of the membership. So the board cannot just decide to change this, it would need a vote of the membership.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
I see. Very well. Thank you sir. Rating to follow.

Thank you very much.

Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 125,785
Experience: JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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