Evictions

Assists the landlord and tenant in filing appropriate eviction complaint and answer forms, prepares cases, summons, and eviction writs as ordered by the Judge

Residential Tenant Evictions

Chapter 83 of the Florida Statutes provides general information on landlord/tenant actions. Landlord actions typically involve non-payment of rent and recovering possession of the rental property.

Written vs. Oral Leases

A written lease can be in the form of a formal contract or simply a copy of a letter that states the rights and obligations of both tenant and landlord. Oral leases are also enforceable. In cases where there is no written lease, the term of your rental payment schedule (monthly, weekly, etc.) determines the length of the agreement.

BASIC STEPS FOR PRO SE FILERS

Non-Payment of Rent

Provide to the tenant a 3-day notice of eviction to pay rent or vacate premises. Do not include day of delivery, weekends or holidays when calculating time. Notice may be mailed, posted on the door of the rental property or hand delivered to the tenant. If the tenant does not comply with the notice in the time allowed pursuant to the notice, the landlord may file an eviction complaint with the Clerk of Court. A copy of the 3-day notice must accompany the complaint at the time of filing.

Non-Compliance with Lease

When there is not a rental agreement and you are evicting a tenant for possession only, you must give the tenant a 7-day or 15-day notice to vacate. If the rent is paid weekly, you must give a 7-day notice. If the rent is paid monthly, you must give a 15-day notice. If the tenant does not comply within the time allowed pursuant to the notice, the landlord may file an eviction complaint with the Clerk of Court. A copy of the 7-day or 15-day notice must accompany the complaint at the time of filing.

Non-Military Affidavit

Must be provided with each suit.

FOR DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS FOR FILING AN EVICTION REVIEW THE EVICTION FILING REQUIREMENTS.

What must the Defendant/Tenant do?

  • Do exactly as the Summons reads: answer and pay rent into the registry of the court. Doing one without the other may result in a Judgment for Possession without further notice.
  • Defendant/tenant may request a hearing in writing. There is no guarantee that a hearing will be scheduled unless an answer and rent is deposited with the court.

Writ of Possession

Upon filing a Motion for Default, the plaintiff may request the issuance of Writ of Possession. Upon completion, the Writ will be sent to the Plaintiff's for completion of service. Or, the Plaintiff may request the Writ to be sent directly to the Sheriff.

Tenant Information:

What if the landlord does not comply with their obligation to maintain premises?

Rent may not be withheld without prior notice to the landlord. Notice must be sent by certified mail at least seven (7) days before the rent is due. If the problem is not corrected within the seven (7) days and you withhold the rent the landlord may file a suit.

Practical Pointers

  • If you have a written rental agreement, read it thoroughly before signing
  • If there are any changes to the written rental agreement, get it in writing
  • Keep receipts/records
  • Do a walk through before entering or vacating the premises
  • Take pictures of any questionable conditions
  • If you have a problem, it needs to be in writing and in proper form, see F.S. 83.51