Terms Used In Florida Statutes > Chapter 718 > Part I
Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
Affirmed: In the practice of the appellate courts, the decree or order is declared valid and will stand as rendered in the lower court.
Aggregate: means the amounts reported for owners of unclaimed property of less than $50 or where there is no name for the individual or entity listed on the holder's records, regardless of the amount to be reported. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
Annuity: A periodic (usually annual) payment of a fixed sum of money for either the life of the recipient or for a fixed number of years. A series of payments under a contract from an insurance company, a trust company, or an individual. Annuity payments are made at regular intervals over a period of more than one full year.
Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
Apparent owner: means the person whose name appears on the records of the holder as the person entitled to property held, issued, or owing by the holder. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
Appraisal: A determination of property value.
Assessment: means a share of the funds which are required for the payment of common expenses, which from time to time is assessed against the unit owner. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
Association: means , in addition to any entity responsible for the operation of common elements owned in undivided shares by unit owners, any entity which operates or maintains other real property in which unit owners have use rights, where membership in the entity is composed exclusively of unit owners or their elected or appointed representatives and is a required condition of unit ownership. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Association property: means that property, real and personal, which is owned or leased by, or is dedicated by a recorded plat to, the association for the use and benefit of its members. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Attachment: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
Bankruptcy: Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings.
Beneficiary: A person who is entitled to receive the benefits or proceeds of a will, trust, insurance policy, retirement plan, annuity, or other contract. Source: OCC
board: means the board of directors or other representative body which is responsible for administration of the association. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Business association: means any corporation (other than a public corporation), joint stock company, investment company, business trust, partnership, limited liability company, or association of two or more individuals for business purposes, whether for profit or not for profit. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Committee: means a group of board members, unit owners, or board members and unit owners appointed by the board or a member of the board to make recommendations to the board regarding the proposed annual budget or to take action on behalf of the board. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Common expenses: means all expenses properly incurred by the association in the performance of its duties, including expenses specified in…. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Common law: The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States. It is based on judicial decisions rather than legislative action.
Common surplus: means the amount of all receipts or revenues, including assessments, rents, or profits, collected by a condominium association which exceeds common expenses. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
Condominium: means that form of ownership of real property created pursuant to this chapter, which is comprised entirely of units that may be owned by one or more persons, and in which there is, appurtenant to each unit, an undivided share in common elements. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Condominium parcel: means a unit, together with the undivided share in the common elements appurtenant to the unit. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Condominium property: means the lands, leaseholds, and personal property that are subjected to condominium ownership, whether or not contiguous, and all improvements thereon and all easements and rights appurtenant thereto intended for use in connection with the condominium. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Conspicuous type: means bold type in capital letters no smaller than the largest type, exclusive of headings, on the page on which it appears and, in all cases, at least 10-point type. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
Counterclaim: A claim that a defendant makes against a plaintiff.
Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
Decedent: A deceased person.
declaration of condominium: means the instrument or instruments by which a condominium is created, as they are from time to time amended. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Deed: The legal instrument used to transfer title in real property from one person to another.
Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
Dependent: A person dependent for support upon another.
Developer: means a person who creates a condominium or offers condominium parcels for sale or lease in the ordinary course of business, but does not include:
(a) An owner or lessee of a condominium or cooperative unit who has acquired the unit for his or her own occupancy;
(b) A cooperative association that creates a condominium by conversion of an existing residential cooperative after control of the association has been transferred to the unit owners if, following the conversion, the unit owners are the same persons who were unit owners of the cooperative and no units are offered for sale or lease to the public as part of the plan of conversion;
Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
Dismissal: The dropping of a case by the judge without further consideration or hearing. Source:
Division: means the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Domicile: means the state of incorporation for a corporation incorporated under the laws of a state, or, for an unincorporated business association, the state where the business association is organized. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Electronic funds transfer: The transfer of money between accounts by consumer electronic systems-such as automated teller machines (ATMs) and electronic payment of bills-rather than by check or cash. (Wire transfers, checks, drafts, and paper instruments do not fall into this category.) Source: OCC
Embezzlement: In most states, embezzlement is defined as theft/larceny of assets (money or property) by a person in a position of trust or responsibility over those assets. Embezzlement typically occurs in the employment and corporate settings. Source: OCC
Entitlement: A Federal program or provision of law that requires payments to any person or unit of government that meets the eligibility criteria established by law. Entitlements constitute a binding obligation on the part of the Federal Government, and eligible recipients have legal recourse if the obligation is not fulfilled. Social Security and veterans' compensation and pensions are examples of entitlement programs.
Equitable: Pertaining to civil suits in "equity" rather than in "law." In English legal history, the courts of "law" could order the payment of damages and could afford no other remedy. See damages. A separate court of "equity" could order someone to do something or to cease to do something. See, e.g., injunction. In American jurisprudence, the federal courts have both legal and equitable power, but the distinction is still an important one. For example, a trial by jury is normally available in "law" cases but not in "equity" cases. Source: U.S. Courts
Escheat: Reversion of real or personal property to the state when 1) a person dies without leaving a will and has no heirs, or 2) when the property (such as a bank account) has been inactive for a certain period of time. Source: OCC
Escrow: Money given to a third party to be held for payment until certain conditions are met.
Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
Fair market value: The price at which an asset would change hands in a transaction between a willing, informed buyer and a willing, informed seller.
Fee simple: Absolute title to property with no limitations or restrictions regarding the person who may inherit it.
Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
Fiduciary: A trustee, executor, or administrator.
Fiscal year: The fiscal year is the accounting period for the government. For the federal government, this begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, fiscal year 2006 begins on October 1, 2005 and ends on September 30, 2006.
Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
Forgery: The fraudulent signing or alteration of another's name to an instrument such as a deed, mortgage, or check. The intent of the forgery is to deceive or defraud. Source: OCC
Fraud: Intentional deception resulting in injury to another.
Garnishment: Generally, garnishment is a court proceeding in which a creditor asks a court to order a third party who owes money to the debtor or otherwise holds assets belonging to the debtor to turn over to the creditor any of the debtor
Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
Holder: means a person, wherever organized or domiciled, who is:
(a) In possession of property belonging to another;
Indictment: The formal charge issued by a grand jury stating that there is enough evidence that the defendant committed the crime to justify having a trial; it is used primarily for felonies.
Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
Land: means the surface of a legally described parcel of real property and includes, unless otherwise specified in the declaration and whether separate from or including such surface, airspace lying above and subterranean space lying below such surface. See Florida Statutes 718.103
last known address: includes any partial description of the location of the apparent owner sufficient to establish the apparent owner was a resident of this state at the time of last contact with the apparent owner or at the time the property became due and payable. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Lawsuit: A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
Lease: A contract transferring the use of property or occupancy of land, space, structures, or equipment in consideration of a payment (e.g., rent). Source: OCC
Legatee: A beneficiary of a decedent
Liabilities: The aggregate of all debts and other legal obligations of a particular person or legal entity.
Lien: A claim against real or personal property in satisfaction of a debt.
Limited common elements: means those common elements which are reserved for the use of a certain unit or units to the exclusion of all other units, as specified in the declaration. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
operation of the condominium: includes the administration and management of the condominium property. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Owner: means a depositor in the case of a deposit, a beneficiary in the case of a trust or a deposit in trust, or a payee in the case of other intangible property, or a person having a legal or equitable interest in property subject to this chapter or his or her legal representative. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Partnership: A voluntary contract between two or more persons to pool some or all of their assets into a business, with the agreement that there will be a proportional sharing of profits and losses.
person: includes individuals, children, firms, associations, joint adventures, partnerships, estates, trusts, business trusts, syndicates, fiduciaries, corporations, and all other groups or combinations. See Florida Statutes 88.6011
Personal property: All property that is not real property.
Plaintiff: The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.
Pleadings: Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions. In the federal courts, the principal pleadings are the complaint and the answer.
political subdivision: include counties, cities, towns, villages, special tax school districts, special road and bridge districts, bridge districts, and all other districts in this state. See Florida Statutes 88.6011
Power of attorney: A written instrument which authorizes one person to act as another's agent or attorney. The power of attorney may be for a definite, specific act, or it may be general in nature. The terms of the written power of attorney may specify when it will expire. If not, the power of attorney usually expires when the person granting it dies. Source: OCC
Presiding officer: A majority-party Senator who presides over the Senate and is charged with maintaining order and decorum, recognizing Members to speak, and interpreting the Senate's rules, practices and precedents.
Probate: Proving a will
Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
Prosecute: To charge someone with a crime. A prosecutor tries a criminal case on behalf of the government.
Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
Residential condominium: means a condominium consisting of two or more units, any of which are intended for use as a private temporary or permanent residence, except that a condominium is not a residential condominium if the use for which the units are intended is primarily commercial or industrial and not more than three units are intended to be used for private residence, and are intended to be used as housing for maintenance, managerial, janitorial, or other operational staff of the condominium. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Right of survivorship: The ownership rights that result in the acquisition of title to property by reason of having survived other co-owners.
Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
Special assessment: means any assessment levied against a unit owner other than the assessment required by a budget adopted annually. See Florida Statutes 718.103
State: when applied to a part of the United States, includes any state, district, commonwealth, territory, insular possession, and any other area subject to the legislative authority of the United States. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
Statute of limitations: A law that sets the time within which parties must take action to enforce their rights.
Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
Testate: To die leaving a will.
Testify: Answer questions in court.
Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
Timeshare estate: means any interest in a unit under which the exclusive right of use, possession, or occupancy of the unit circulates among the various purchasers of a timeshare plan pursuant to chapter 721 on a recurring basis for a period of time. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
Ultimate equitable owner: means a natural person who, directly or indirectly, owns or controls an ownership interest in a corporation, a foreign corporation, an alien business organization, or any other form of business organization, regardless of whether such natural person owns or controls such ownership interest through one or more natural persons or one or more proxies, powers of attorney, nominees, corporations, associations, partnerships, trusts, joint stock companies, or other entities or devices, or any combination thereof. See Florida Statutes 713.73
United States: means any state, district, commonwealth, territory, insular possession, and any other area subject to the legislative authority of the United States of America. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Uphold: The decision of an appellate court not to reverse a lower court decision.
Utility: means a person who owns or operates, for public use, any plant, equipment, property, franchise, or license for the transmission of communications or the production, storage, transmission, sale, delivery, or furnishing of electricity, water, steam, or gas. See Florida Statutes 713.73
Venue: The geographical location in which a case is tried.
Voting certificate: means a document which designates one of the record title owners, or the corporate, partnership, or entity representative, who is authorized to vote on behalf of a condominium unit that is owned by more than one owner or by any entity. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Voting interests: means the voting rights distributed to the association members pursuant to…. See Florida Statutes 718.103
Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.
writing: includes handwriting, printing, typewriting, and all other methods and means of forming letters and characters upon paper, stone, wood, or other materials. See Florida Statutes 88.6011