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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Chapter 651
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F.S. 651.0215
651.0215 Consolidated application for a provisional certificate of authority and a certificate of authority; required restrictions on use of entrance fees.
(1) For an applicant to qualify for a certificate of authority without first obtaining a provisional certificate of authority, all of the following conditions must be met:
(a) All reservation deposits and entrance fees must be placed in escrow in accordance with s. 651.033. The applicant may not use or pledge any part of an initial entrance fee for the construction or purchase of the facility or as security for long-term financing.
(b) The reservation deposit may not exceed the lesser of $40,000 or 10 percent of the then-current fee for the unit selected by a resident and must be refundable at any time before the resident takes occupancy of the selected unit.
(c) The resident contract must state that collection of the balance of the entrance fee is to occur after the resident is notified that his or her selected unit is available for occupancy and on or before the occupancy date.
(2) The consolidated application must be on a form prescribed by the commission and must contain all of the following information:
(a) All of the information required under s. 651.022(2).
(b) A feasibility study prepared by an independent consultant which contains all of the information required by s. 651.022(3) and financial forecasts or projections prepared in accordance with standards adopted by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants or in accordance with standards for feasibility studies for continuing care retirement communities adopted by the Actuarial Standards Board.
1. The feasibility study must take into account project costs, actual marketing results to date and marketing projections, resident fees and charges, competition, resident contract provisions, and other factors that affect the feasibility of operating the facility.
2. If the feasibility study is prepared by an independent certified public accountant, it must contain an examination report, or a compilation report acceptable to the office, containing a financial forecast or projections for the first 5 years of operations which take into account an actuary’s mortality and morbidity assumptions as the study relates to turnover, rates, fees, and charges. If the study is prepared by an independent consulting actuary, it must contain mortality and morbidity assumptions as it relates to turnover, rates, fees, and charges and an actuary’s signed opinion that the project as proposed is feasible and that the study has been prepared in accordance with Actuarial Standard of Practice No. 3 for Continuing Care Retirement Communities, Revised Edition, effective May 1, 2011.
(c) Documents evidencing that commitments have been secured for construction financing and long-term financing or that a documented plan acceptable to the office has been adopted by the applicant for long-term financing.
(d) Documents evidencing that all conditions of the lender have been satisfied to activate the commitment to disburse funds, other than the obtaining of the certificate of authority, the completion of construction, or the closing of the purchase of realty or buildings for the facility.
(e) Documents evidencing that the aggregate amount of entrance fees received by or pledged to the applicant, plus anticipated proceeds from any long-term financing commitment and funds from all other sources in the actual possession of the applicant, equal at least 100 percent of the aggregate cost of constructing or purchasing, equipping, and furnishing the facility plus 100 percent of the anticipated startup losses of the facility.
(f) A complete audited financial report of the applicant, prepared by an independent certified public accountant in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, as of the date the applicant commenced business operations or for the fiscal year that ended immediately preceding the date of application, whichever is later; and complete unaudited quarterly financial statements attested to by the applicant after the date of the last audit.
(g) Documents evidencing that the applicant will be able to comply with s. 651.035.
(h) Such other reasonable data, financial statements, and pertinent information as the commission or office may require with respect to the applicant or the facility to determine the financial status of the facility and the management capabilities of its managers and owners.

If any material change occurs in the facts set forth in an application filed with the office pursuant to this subsection, an amendment setting forth such change must be filed with the office within 10 business days after the applicant becomes aware of such change, and a copy of the amendment must be sent by registered mail to the principal office of the facility and to the principal office of the controlling company.

(3) If an applicant has or proposes to have more than one facility offering continuing care or continuing care at-home, a separate certificate of authority must be obtained for each facility.
(4) Within 45 days after receipt of the information required under subsection (2), the office shall examine the information and notify the applicant in writing, specifically requesting any additional information that the office is authorized to require. An application is deemed complete when the office receives all requested information and the applicant corrects any error or omission of which the applicant was timely notified or when the time for such notification has expired. Within 15 days after receipt of all of the requested additional information, the office shall notify the applicant in writing that all of the requested information has been received and that the application is deemed complete as of the date of the notice. Failure to notify the applicant in writing within the 15-day period constitutes acknowledgment by the office that it has received all requested additional information, and the application is deemed complete for purposes of review on the date the applicant files all of the required additional information.
(5) Within 45 days after an application is deemed complete as set forth in subsection (4) and upon completion of the remaining requirements of this section, the office shall complete its review and issue or deny a certificate of authority to the applicant. If a certificate of authority is denied, the office shall notify the applicant in writing, citing the specific failures to satisfy this chapter, and the applicant is entitled to an administrative hearing pursuant to chapter 120.
(6) The office shall issue a certificate of authority upon determining that the applicant meets all of the requirements of law and has submitted all of the information required under this section, that all escrow requirements have been satisfied, and that the fees prescribed in s. 651.015(2) have been paid.
(7) The issuance of a certificate of authority entitles the applicant to begin construction and collect reservation deposits and entrance fees from prospective residents. The reservation contract must state the cancellation policy and the terms of the continuing care contract. All or any part of an entrance fee or reservation deposit collected must be placed in an escrow account or on deposit with the department pursuant to s. 651.033.
(8) The provider is entitled to secure release of the moneys held in escrow within 7 days after the office receives an affidavit from the provider, along with appropriate documentation to verify, and notification is provided to the escrow agent by certified mail, that all of the following conditions have been satisfied:
(a) A certificate of occupancy has been issued.
(b) Payment in full has been received for at least 70 percent of the total units of a phase or of the total of the combined phases constructed. If a provider offering continuing care at-home is applying for a release of escrowed entrance fees, the same minimum requirement must be met for the continuing care contracts and for the continuing care at-home contracts independently of each other.
(c) The provider has evidence of sufficient funds to meet the requirements of s. 651.035, which may include funds deposited in the initial entrance fee account.
(d) Documents evidencing the intended application of the proceeds upon release and documents evidencing that the entrance fees, when released, will be applied as represented to the office.

Notwithstanding chapter 120, only the provider, the escrow agent, and the office have a substantial interest in any office decision regarding release of escrow funds in any proceedings under chapter 120 or this chapter.

(9) The office may not approve any application that includes in the plan of financing any encumbrance of the operating reserves or renewal and replacement reserves required by this chapter.
(10) The office may not issue a certificate of authority for a facility that does not have a component that is to be licensed pursuant to part II of chapter 400 or part I of chapter 429, or that does not offer personal services or nursing services through written contractual agreement. A written contractual agreement must be disclosed in the contract for continuing care or continuing care at-home and is subject to s. 651.1151.
History.s. 6, ch. 2019-160.