MIAMI, Nov. 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Class action lawsuits and claims are being filed across Florida — including in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Orlando, and Jacksonville — seeking damages and an injunction against condominium associations that have violated the Florida Condominium Act § 718.112(2)(i) by charging condominium renters and buyers improper transfer fees in the application process for condominium rentals and purchases. In a class action lawsuit filed last Friday in Miami-Dade County Circuit Court, August Lasseter says he was billed $625 in non-refundable fees when he signed a lease for a unit at one of the two high-rise towers at Quantum on the Bay in Miami. The charges broke down to $100 for a background check, $175 for "administrative review," $125 for registration and $225 for move-in. "I questioned it at the time, but it's not like you really have a choice," said Lasseter, 37, who runs a modeling agency. "They say you pay it or you don't move in."
As The Miami Herald reported in June, "Condo associations across South Florida are ripping off consumers with high application fees in violation of state law". While the associations are permitted to collect refundable deposits, a Herald investigation found that some renters and buyers were being charged between $125 and $625 in improper fees, a clear violation of the $100 limit set by Florida Statutes. In addition, the Herald investigation found that nearly half of condo listings in Miami-Dade County showed application fees that exceeded $100.
According to Aaron Resnick, Esq., one of the lead attorneys handling the class actions, "the Florida Condominium Act prohibits condominium associations from charging transfer fees of more than $100 per applicant in connection with the sale, mortgage, lease, sublease, or other transfer of a unit, including charges associated with applications, background checks, screening and move-in fees and pets. Resnick further notes, that "even then, such fees, which are limited to $100, must be clearly stated in a condo association's governing documents."
According to Resnick, in each lawsuit they will be asking the Court to enter a permanent injunction to prevent the condominium association from charging improper transfer fees in the future. Resnick further stated that "we hope that our lawsuits will put an end to this practice and our clients will get back money they should never had been required to pay. Floridians work hard, and this unlawful practice must end." Accordingly, Resnick advises that they will be covering all out of pocket costs for their clients and only receive legal fees from statutorily awarded fees or out of a recovery paid by the associations.
Josh Spector, Esq., co-counsel on the class actions along with Jonathan Feldman, Esq., explains, "Consumers in Florida should not be charged fees that are simply not allowed under the law. Simply put, a condominium association has no right to charge fees in violation of Florida and law, and we seek to put an end to this practice."
Resnick states that they will be filing file class action lawsuits and claims in every major city in Florida for clients who were charged improper transfer fees by condominium associations over the past four years.
ABOUT THE LAW OFFICES OF AARON RESNICK, P.A.
The Law Offices of Aaron Resnick, P.A. is a Miami based law firm dedicated to assisting both businesses and individuals throughout the state of Florida. Aaron Resnick, Esq. is the managing partner of the Firm. Mr. Resnick is admitted to all of the state and federal courts in Florida and the United States Supreme Court. In 2016, Acquisition International Magazine announced that Mr. Resnick was a winner of the 2016 Business Excellence Awards and named the "Best Business Litigation Attorney" for Florida. In 2016, Mr. Resnick was also recognized by Florida Trend magazine as one of its 2016 Florida Legal Elite™ and Super Lawyers Magazine named Mr. Resnick as a Florida "Super Lawyer". He was also named to Corporate America's 2016 Legal Elite. For more information on the Firm, go to www.thefirmmiami.com.
ABOUT Perlman, Bajandas, Yevoli & Albright, P.L.
Founded in 2004 with the vision of providing premier legal services in an entrepreneurial environment to a broad range of clients, Perlman, Bajandas, Yevoli & Albright, P.L. offers a full service commercial litigation and class action practice, corporate law practice and taxation and estate planning counseling for clients throughout the State of Florida. Since its founding, the Firm's lawyers have been recognized as leaders in their respective practice areas by numerous publications and are dedicated to the local community through their involvement in both civic and charitable organizations. For more information on the Firm, go to www.pbyalaw.com.
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SOURCE Aaron Resnick