July 07, 2020
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Amendment CaShTmL-042118.HTM
                                                  SENATE AMENDMENT
    Bill No. CS for CS for SB 2984, 1st Eng.
    Amendment No. ___   Barcode 042118
                            CHAMBER ACTION
              Senate                               House
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 1                  3/AD/3R        .                    
       04/27/2004 03:51 PM         .                    
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11  Senator Atwater moved the following amendment:
12  
13         Senate Amendment 
14         On page 47, line 1, through
15            page 49, line 9, delete those lines
16  
17  and insert:  
18         (4)  It is the intent of the Legislature to protect the
19  right of parcel owners to exercise their rights as protected
20  by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution and
21  s. 5, Art. I of the State Constitution. The Legislature
22  recognizes that strategic lawsuits against public
23  participation, or "SLAPP" suits, have occurred when a member
24  is sued by individuals or business organization due to a
25  parcel-owner member's appearance and presentation before a
26  governmental entity on matters related to the homeowners'
27  association. However, it is the public policy of this state
28  that business organizations and individuals not engage in such
29  suits, because such actions are inconsistent with the right of
30  parcel owners to participate in the state's institutions of
31  government. Therefore, the Legislature finds and declares that
                                  1
    2:44 PM   04/27/04                              s2984c2b-25c8j

SENATE AMENDMENT Bill No. CS for CS for SB 2984, 1st Eng. Amendment No. ___ Barcode 042118 1 prohibiting such lawsuits by business organizations and 2 individuals against parcel owners who address matters 3 concerning their homeowners' association will preserve this 4 fundamental state policy, preserve the constitutional rights 5 of parcel owners, and assure the continuation of 6 representative government in this state. It is the intent of 7 the Legislature that such lawsuits be expeditiously disposed 8 of by the courts. 9 (a) A business organization or individual in this 10 state may not file or cause to be filed through its employees 11 or agents any lawsuit, cause of action, claim, cross-claim, or 12 counterclaim against a parcel owner without merit and solely 13 because the parcel owner has exercised the right to instruct 14 his or her representatives or the right to petition for 15 redress of grievances before the governmental entities of this 16 state, as protected by the First Amendment to the United 17 States Constitution and s. 5, Art. I of the State 18 Constitution. 19 (b) A parcel owner sued by a business organization or 20 individual in violation of this section has a right to an 21 expeditious resolution of a claim that the suit violates this 22 section. A parcel owner may petition the court for an order 23 dismissing the action or granting final judgment in favor of 24 that parcel owner. The petitioner may file a motion for 25 summary judgment, with supplemental affidavits, seeking a 26 determination that the business organization's or individual's 27 lawsuit has been brought in violation of this section. The 28 business organization or individual must thereafter file a 29 response and any supplemental affidavits. As soon as 30 practicable, the court shall set a hearing on the petitioner's 31 motion, which shall be held at the earliest possible time 2 2:44 PM 04/27/04 s2984c2b-25c8j
SENATE AMENDMENT Bill No. CS for CS for SB 2984, 1st Eng. Amendment No. ___ Barcode 042118 1 after the filing of the response. The court may award the 2 parcel owner actual damages arising from the violation of this 3 section. A court may award treble damages to a prevailing 4 parcel owner and shall state the basis for the treble damages 5 award in its judgment. The court shall award the prevailing 6 party reasonable attorney's fees and costs incurred in 7 connection with a claim that an action was filed in violation 8 of this section. 9 (c) Homeowners' associations may not expend 10 association funds in prosecuting a SLAPP suit against a parcel 11 owner. 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 3 2:44 PM 04/27/04 s2984c2b-25c8j
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