Eviction Process in the State of Florida

Did you know that in the State of Florida, a property-owner can evict or remove a tenant for an array of reasons? The property-owner must give the tenant a written notice first according to Florida State law and only then if the tenant doesn’t obey the written notice, the property-owner can then file for an eviction.

Here are 4 type of notices that could decide the reason for a tenant’s removal from their home:

1.) Termination with Cause Notice

In the State of Florida, a property-owner can end a tenancy early and remove a tenant for not paying rent and not complying to the written lease both parties agreed on. As previously stated, for a property-owner to stop the tenancy, the property-owner must first submit an official written notice to the tenant.

3-Day Notice to Pay Rent will be submitted: If the lease holder neglects to pay rent, then the property-owner can submit the lease holder with a 3-day notice to pay or vacate the property. If the lease holder doesn’t pay rent or vacate the property, then the property-owner can file for an eviction lawsuit after three days (see Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.56(3)) http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0083/Sections/0083.56.html

7-Day Notice to Cure: If the lease holder isn’t in compliant with rental agreement and both parties discussed a special grace period to comply, then the property-owner can grant the lease holder a 7-day notice to cure. This notice notifies the property-owner that the lease holder have granted 7 days to comply with the lease or the property-owner can and will terminate the lease holder, thus, if the lease holder doesn’t make good on the grace period within 7 days, the property-owner can file an eviction in the State of Florida (see Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.56(2)(b)) http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0083/Sections/0083.56.html

7-Day Unconditional Quit Notice: An unconditional quit notice permits the property-owner to dismiss the lease holder at the end of the 7-day period and continue with the eviction without further notice. In the State of Florida, this notice can only be applied if the lease holder:

  • Demolishes the rental property or other lease holder’s property.
  • Deliberately disturbs the tranquility of the property.
  • …or makes the same lease breaches within a twelve-month period.

This notice notifies the lease holder must vacate the unit within 7 days or the property-owner will continue with the eviction lawsuit (see Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.56(2)(b)) http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0083/Sections/0083.56.html

2.) Termination Without Cause Notice

Month-to-Month Rental Lease Agreements

If a lease holder has a month-to-month lease agreement and the property-owner wants to end the agreement and there is no cause to do end the agreement, then the property-owner can submit the the lease holder a 15 days’ written notice. This notice notifies the lease holder that the agreement will terminate in 15 days and that they must vacate the property by that time (see Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.56(2)(b)) http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0083/Sections/0083.56.html

Fixed-Term Lease

If a lease holder has a lease agreement that’s for a permanent or fixed term, such as 6 months or 12 months, the property-owner will have to wait until the completion of the term prior to ending the lease agreement without cause. The property-owner doesn’t necessarily need to provide the lease holder notice to vacate by the unless the lease agreement requires the property-owner provide notice.

3.) Tenant Eviction Defenses Notice

A lease holder can decide to challenge an eviction. If a lease holder decides to challenge the eviction, the lawsuit can take longer to be settled in court. The lease holder may be able to provide valid defenses, such as:

  • The property-owner wrongly served a notice
  • Property-owner failed to maintain the rental unit per the lease agreement.
  • Discrimination against the lease holder, which should have been documented.

For more information on tenant defenses, see Tenant Defenses to Eviction Notices in Florida.

4.) Removal of the Tenant Notice

A property-owner should not try to make a lease holder vacate the rental. The lease holder can be forced out from the unit only after the property-owner has effectively been awarded the eviction lawsuit legally. A sheriff is the only person that can force the previous lease holder to vacate the unit, thus, it’s illegal in the in the State of Florida for a property-owner to personally remove a previous lease holder.

If the previous lease holder left or abandoned their personal property, the property-owner by Florida law had to notify the previous lease holder in writing that he or she has 10 days to claim all property. In addition, the property-owner can charge the previous lease holder a storage fee while the property is in the possession of the abandoned property. In the event that the previous lease holder doesn’t claim the property within the allotted time per the written notice, the property-owner has the right to get rid of the abandoned property as he or she wishes or sell the items (see Fla. Stat. Ann. § § 715.10–111http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0700-0799/0715/0715.html

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