Q&A: No Walk in the Park

Q. There are 16 units on our property, each with an assigned parking space. Permanent parking permits are given to unit owners, along with one guest permit for visitors that are invited into our private community. Guest parking is limited to four on the property—all others must park on the street. No vehicle may park in an assigned parking space. Lately, a tenant who has an assigned space has decided to park in the guest space. This has gone on for a number of weeks, as he has a friend's car which he doesn't want to park on the street. Requests for him to leave the guest spot open have been ignored by him (a renter) and the off-site owner. The documents state that the board has the right to fine any individual not following the rules and regulations, but there is a feeling that we, the board, would be leaving ourselves open to legal problems if we did that. The guest spaces are considered "common grounds," and therefore the renter states he has every right to park there. Any suggestions?

                               —Park and Ride

A. If authorized in the association’s bylaws, §718.112(3), Florida Statutes, permits the association to adopt and amend rules and regulations governing the use of the common elements,” states Attorney Russell M. Robbins, managing partner of the law firm of Mirza, Basulto & Robbins, LLP with offices in Miami Lakes and Coral Springs. “Generally speaking, adoption of rules must occur at a board meeting, where the unit owners were afforded at least fourteen (14) days mailed notice of the proposed rules.
“If the association has formally adopted rules pertaining to the parking of vehicles in ‘guest spaces,’ then the association could enforce them by towing or booting vehicles that violate the rules.  §715.07, Florida Statutes, authorizes a designated representative or representatives of a condominium association to tow vehicles from the common areas for violating the association’s governing documents and rules and regulations pertaining to parking.  Towing or booting such vehicles would likely result in a cessation of the violation.”   

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