Florida Statutes

51.011 Summary procedure
82.01 “Unlawful entry and forcible entry” defined.
82.03 Remedy declared for unlawful entry and forcible entry.

CHAPTER 83: LANDLORD AND TENANT PART II RESIDENTIAL TENANCIES (ss. 83.40-83.681)
83.43 Definitions.
83.44 Obligation of good faith.
83.45 Unconscionable rental agreement or provision.
83.46 Rent; duration of tenancies.
83.47 Prohibited provisions in rental agreements.
83.49 Deposit money or advance rent; duty of landlord and tenant.
83.56 Termination of rental agreement.
83.59 Right of action for possession.
83.62 Restoration of possession to landlord


51.011 Summary Procedure
The procedure in this section applies only to those actions specified by statute or rule. Rules of procedure apply to this section except when this section or the statute or rule prescribing this section provides a different procedure. If there is a difference between the time period prescribed in a rule and in this section, this section governs.

(1) PLEADINGS. Plaintiff’s initial pleading shall contain the matters required by the statute or rule prescribing this section or, if none is so required, shall state a cause of action. All defenses of law or fact shall be contained in defendant’s answer which shall be filed within 5 days after service of process. If the answer incorporates a counterclaim, plaintiff shall include all defenses of law or fact in his answer to the counterclaim and shall serve it within 5 days after service of the counterclaim. No other pleadings are permitted. All defensive motions, including motions to quash, shall be heard by the court prior to trial.

(2) DISCOVERY. Depositions on oral examination may be taken by any party at any time. Other discovery and admissions may be had only on order of court setting the time for compliance. No discovery postpones the time for trial except for good cause shown or by stipulation of the parties.

(3) JURY. If a jury trial is authorized by law, any party may demand it in any pleading or by a separate paper served not later than 5 days after the action comes to issue. When a jury is in attendance at the close of pleading or the time of demand for jury trial, the action may be tried immediately; otherwise, the court shall order a special venire to be summoned immediately. If a special venire be summoned, the party demanding the jury shall deposit sufficient money with the clerk to pay the jury fees which shall be taxed as costs if he prevails.

(4) NEW TRIAL. Motion for new trial shall be filed and served within 5 days after verdict, if a jury trial was had, or after entry of judgment, if trial was by the court. A reserved motion for directed verdict shall be renewed within the period for moving for a new trial.

(5) APPEAL. Notice of appeal shall be filed and served within 30 days from the rendition of the judgment appealed from.
History: s. 7, ch. 67-254; s. 23, ch. 73-333; s. 5, ch. 87-405.

 

82.01 “Unlawful entry and forcible entry”

Defined.–No person shall enter into any lands or tenements except when entry is given by law, nor shall any person, when entry is given by law, enter with strong hand or with multitude of people, but only in a peaceable, easy and open manner.

History.–s. 1, ch. 1630, 1868; RS 1687; GS 2152; RGS 3456; CGL 5309; s. 33, ch. 67-254.

 

82.03 Remedy declared for unlawful entry and forcible entry.

If any person enters or has entered into lands or tenements when entry is not given by law, or if any person enters or has entered into any lands or tenements with strong hand or with multitude of people, even when entry is given by law, the party turned out or deprived of possession by the unlawful or forcible entry, by whatever right or title the party held possession, or whatever estate the party held or claimed in the lands or tenements of which he or she was so dispossessed, is entitled to the summary procedure under s. 51.011 within 3 years thereafter.

History.–s. 3, ch. 1630, 1868; RS 1689; GS 2154; RGS 3458; CGL 5311; s. 33, ch. 67-254; s. 423, ch. 95-147.

 

83.43 Definitions.

As used in this part, the following words and terms shall have the following meanings unless some other meaning is plainly indicated:

(1) “Building, housing, and health codes” means any law, ordinance, or governmental regulation concerning health, safety, sanitation or fitness for habitation, or the construction, maintenance, operation, occupancy, use, or appearance, of any dwelling unit.

(2) “Dwelling unit” means:

(a) A structure or part of a structure that is rented for use as a home, residence, or sleeping place by one person or by two or more persons who maintain a common household.

(b) A mobile home rented by a tenant.

(c) A structure or part of a structure that is furnished, with or without rent, as an incident of employment for use as a home, residence, or sleeping place by one or more persons.

(3) “Landlord” means the owner or lessor of a dwelling unit.

(4) “Tenant” means any person entitled to occupy a dwelling unit under a rental agreement.

(5) “Premises” means a dwelling unit and the structure of which it is a part and a mobile home lot and the appurtenant facilities and grounds, areas, facilities, and property held out for the use of tenants generally.

(6) “Rent” means the periodic payments due the landlord from the tenant for occupancy under a rental agreement and any other payments due the landlord from the tenant as may be designated as rent in a written rental agreement.

(7) “Rental agreement” means any written agreement, or oral agreement if for less duration than 1 year, providing for use and occupancy of premises.

(8) “Good faith” means honesty in fact in the conduct or transaction concerned.

(9) “Advance rent” means moneys paid to the landlord to be applied to future rent payment periods, but does not include rent paid in advance for a current rent payment period.

(10) “Transient occupancy” means occupancy when it is the intention of the parties that the occupancy will be temporary.

(11) “Deposit money” means any money held by the landlord on behalf of the tenant, including, but not limited to, damage deposits, security deposits, advance rent deposit, pet deposit, or any contractual deposit agreed to between landlord and tenant either in writing or orally.

(12) “Security deposits” means any moneys held by the landlord as security for the performance of the rental agreement, including, but not limited to, monetary damage to the landlord caused by the tenant’s breach of lease prior to the expiration thereof.

(13) “Legal holiday” means holidays observed by the clerk of the court.

History.–s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 1, ch. 74-143; s. 1, ch. 81-190; s. 3, ch. 83-151; s. 17, ch. 94-170.

 

83.44 Obligation of good faith.

Every rental agreement or duty within this part imposes an obligation of good faith in its performance or enforcement.

History.–s. 2, ch. 73-330

 

83.45 Unconscionable rental agreement or provision.

(1) If the court as a matter of law finds a rental agreement or any provision of a rental agreement to have been unconscionable at the time it was made, the court may refuse to enforce the rental agreement, enforce the remainder of the rental agreement without the unconscionable provision, or so limit the application of any unconscionable provision as to avoid any unconscionable result.

(2) When it is claimed or appears to the court that the rental agreement or any provision thereof may be unconscionable, the parties shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to present evidence as to meaning, relationship of the parties, purpose, and effect to aid the court in making the determination.

History.–s. 2, ch. 73-330.

 

83.46 Rent; duration of tenancies.

(1) Unless otherwise agreed, rent is payable without demand or notice; periodic rent is payable at the beginning of each rent payment period; and rent is uniformly apportionable from day to day.

(2) If the rental agreement contains no provision as to duration of the tenancy, the duration is determined by the periods for which the rent is payable. If the rent is payable weekly, then the tenancy is from week to week; if payable monthly, tenancy is from month to month; if payable quarterly, tenancy is from quarter to quarter; if payable yearly, tenancy is from year to year.

(3) If the dwelling unit is furnished without rent as an incident of employment and there is no agreement as to the duration of the tenancy, the duration is determined by the periods for which wages are payable. If wages are payable weekly or more frequently, then the tenancy is from week to week; and if wages are payable monthly or no wages are payable, then the tenancy is from month to month. In the event that the employee ceases employment, the employer shall be entitled to rent for the period from the day after the employee ceases employment until the day that the dwelling unit is vacated at a rate equivalent to the rate charged for similarly situated residences in the area. This subsection shall not apply to an employee or a resident manager of an apartment house or an apartment complex when there is a written agreement to the contrary.

History.–s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 2, ch. 81-190; s. 2, ch. 87-195; s. 2, ch. 90-133; s. 1, ch. 93-255.

 

83.47 Prohibited provisions in rental agreements.

(1) A provision in a rental agreement is void and unenforceable to the extent that it:

(a) Purports to waive or preclude the rights, remedies, or requirements set forth in this part.

(b) Purports to limit or preclude any liability of the landlord to the tenant or of the tenant to the landlord, arising under law.

(2) If such a void and unenforceable provision is included in a rental agreement entered into, extended, or renewed after the effective date of this part and either party suffers actual damages as a result of the inclusion, the aggrieved party may recover those damages sustained after the effective date of this part.

History.–s. 2, ch. 73-330.

 

83.49 Deposit money or advance rent; duty of landlord and tenant.

(1) Whenever money is deposited or advanced by a tenant on a rental agreement as security for performance of the rental agreement or as advance rent for other than the next immediate rental period, the landlord or his agent shall either:

(a) Hold the total amount of such money in a separate non-interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution for the benefit of the tenant or tenants. The landlord shall not commingle such moneys with any other funds of the landlord or hypothecate, pledge, or in any other way make use of such moneys until such moneys are actually due the landlord;

(b) Hold the total amount of such money in a separate interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution for the benefit of the tenant or tenants, in which case the tenant shall receive and collect interest in an amount of at least 75 percent of the annualized average interest rate payable on such account or interest at the rate of 5 percent per year, simple interest, whichever the landlord elects. The landlord shall not commingle such moneys with any other funds of the landlord or hypothecate, pledge, or in any other way make use of such moneys until such moneys are actually due the landlord; or

(c) Post a surety bond, executed by the landlord as principal and a surety company authorized and licensed to do business in the state as surety, with the clerk of the circuit court in the county in which the dwelling unit is located in the total amount of the security deposits and advance rent he holds on behalf of the tenants or $50,000, whichever is less. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful compliance of the landlord with the provisions of this section and shall run to the Governor for the benefit of any tenant injured by the landlord’s violation of the provisions of this section. In addition to posting the surety bond, the landlord shall pay to the tenant interest at the rate of 5 percent per year, simple interest. A landlord, or his agent, engaged in the renting of dwelling units in five or more counties, who holds deposit moneys or advance rent and who is otherwise subject to the provisions of this section, may, in lieu of posting a surety bond in each county, elect to post a surety bond in the form and manner provided in this paragraph with the office of the Secretary of State. The bond shall be in the total amount of the security deposit or advance rent held on behalf of tenants or in the amount of $250,000, whichever is less. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful compliance of the landlord with the provisions of this section and shall run to the Governor for the benefit of any tenant injured by the landlord’s violation of this section. In addition to posting a surety bond, the landlord shall pay to the tenant interest on the security deposit or advance rent held on behalf of that tenant at the rate of 5 percent per year simple interest.

(2) The landlord shall, within 30 days of receipt of advance rent or a security deposit, notify the tenant in writing of the manner in which the landlord is holding the advance rent or security deposit and the rate of interest, if any, which the tenant is to receive and the time of interest payments to the tenant. Such written notice shall:

(a) Be given in person or by mail to the tenant.
(b) State the name and address of the depository where the advance rent or security deposit is being held, whether the advance rent or security deposit is being held in a separate account for the benefit of the tenant or is commingled with other funds of the landlord, and, if commingled, whether such funds are deposited in an interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution.
(c) Include a copy of the provisions of subsection (3). Subsequent to providing such notice, if the landlord changes the manner or location in which he is holding the advance rent or security deposit, he shall notify the tenant within 30 days of the change according to the provisions herein set forth. This subsection does not apply to any landlord who rents fewer than five individual dwelling units. Failure to provide this notice shall not be a defense to the payment of rent when due.

(3) Return of deposit

(a) Upon the vacating of the premises for termination of the lease, the landlord shall have 15 days to return the security deposit together with interest if otherwise required, or in which to give the tenant written notice by certified mail to the tenant’s last known mailing address of his intention to impose a claim on the deposit and the reason for imposing the claim. The notice shall contain a statement in substantially the following form: This is a notice of my intention to impose a claim for damages in the amount of upon your security deposit, due to . It is sent to you as required by s. 83.49(3), Florida Statutes. You are hereby notified that you must object in writing to this deduction from your security deposit within 15 days from the time you receive this notice or I will be authorized to deduct my claim from your security deposit. Your objection must be sent to (landlord’s address). If the landlord fails to give the required notice within the 15-day period, he forfeits his right to impose a claim upon the security deposit.

(b) Unless the tenant objects to the imposition of the landlord’s claim or the amount thereof within 15 days after receipt of the landlord’s notice of intention to impose a claim, the landlord may then deduct the amount of his claim and shall remit the balance of the deposit to the tenant within 30 days after the date of the notice of intention to impose a claim for damages.

(c) If either party institutes an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to adjudicate his right to the security deposit, the prevailing party is entitled to receive his court costs plus a reasonable fee for his attorney. The court shall advance the cause on the calendar.

(d) Compliance with this subsection by an individual or business entity authorized to conduct business in this state, including Florida-licensed real estate brokers and salespersons, shall constitute compliance with all other relevant Florida Statutes pertaining to security deposits held pursuant to a rental agreement or other landlord-tenant relationship. Enforcement personnel shall look solely to this subsection to determine compliance. This subsection prevails over any conflicting provisions in chapter 475 and in other sections of the Florida Statutes.

(4) The provisions of this section do not apply to transient rentals by hotels or motels as defined in chapter 509; nor do they apply in those instances in which the amount of rent or deposit, or both, is regulated by law or by rules or regulations of a public body, including public housing authorities and federally administered or regulated housing programs including s. 202, s. 221(d)(3) and (4), s. 236, or s. 8 of the National Housing Act, as amended, other than for rent stabilization. With the exception of subsections (3), (5), and (6), this section is not applicable to housing authorities or public housing agencies created pursuant to chapter 421 or other statutes.

(5) Except when otherwise provided by the terms of a written lease, any tenant who vacates or abandons the premises prior to the expiration of the term specified in the written lease, or any tenant who vacates or abandons premises which are the subject of a tenancy from week to week, month to month, quarter to quarter, or year to year, shall give at least 7 days’ written notice by certified mail or personal delivery to the landlord prior to vacating or abandoning the premises which notice shall include the address where the tenant may be reached. Failure to give such notice shall relieve the landlord of the notice requirement of paragraph (3)

(a) but shall not waive any right the tenant may have to the security deposit or any part of it.

(6) For the purposes of this part, a renewal of an existing rental agreement shall be considered a new rental agreement, and any security deposit carried forward shall be considered a new security deposit.

(7) Upon the sale or transfer of title of the rental property from one owner to another, or upon a change in the designated rental agent, any and all security deposits or advance rents being held for the benefit of the tenants shall be transferred to the new owner or agent, together with any earned interest and with an accurate accounting showing the amounts to be credited to each tenant account. Upon the transfer of such funds and records as stated herein, and upon transmittal of a written receipt therefor, the transferor shall be free from the obligation imposed in subsection (1) to hold such moneys on behalf of the tenant. However, nothing herein shall excuse the landlord or agent for a violation of the provisions of this section while in possession of such deposits.

(8) Any person licensed under the provisions of s. 509.241, unless excluded by the provisions of this part, who fails to comply with the provisions of this part shall be subject to a fine or to the suspension or revocation of his license by the Division of Hotels and Restaurants of the [Footnote 1] Department of Business Regulation in the manner provided in s. 509.261.

(9) In those cases in which interest is required to be paid to the tenant, the landlord shall pay directly to the tenant, or credit against the current month’s rent, the interest due to the tenant at least once annually. However, no interest shall be due a tenant who wrongfully terminates his tenancy prior to the end of the rental term.

 

83.56 Termination of rental agreement.

(1) If the landlord materially fails to comply with s. 83.51(1) or material provisions of the rental agreement within 7 days after delivery of written notice by the tenant specifying the noncompliance and indicating the intention of the tenant to terminate the rental agreement by reason thereof, the tenant may terminate the rental agreement. If the failure to comply with s. 83.51(1) or material provisions of the rental agreement is due to causes beyond the control of the landlord and the landlord has made and continues to make every reasonable effort to correct the failure to comply, the rental agreement may be terminated or altered by the parties, as follows:

(a) If the landlord’s failure to comply renders the dwelling unit untenantable and the tenant vacates, the tenant shall not be liable for rent during the period the dwelling unit remains uninhabitable.

(b) If the landlord’s failure to comply does not render the dwelling unit untenantable and the tenant remains in occupancy, the rent for the period of noncompliance shall be reduced by an amount in proportion to the loss of rental value caused by the noncompliance.

(2) If the tenant materially fails to comply with s. 83.52 or material provisions of the rental agreement, other than a failure to pay rent, or reasonable rules or regulations, the landlord may:

(a) If such noncompliance is of a nature that the tenant should not be given an opportunity to cure it or if the noncompliance constitutes a subsequent or continuing noncompliance within 12 months of a written warning by the landlord of a similar violation, deliver a written notice to the tenant specifying the noncompliance and the landlord’s intent to terminate the rental agreement by reason thereof. Examples of noncompliance which are of a nature that the tenant should not be given an opportunity to cure include, but are not limited to, destruction, damage, or misuse of the landlord’s or other tenants’ property by intentional act or a subsequent or continued unreasonable disturbance. In such event, the landlord may terminate the rental agreement, and the tenant shall have 7 days from the date that the notice is delivered to vacate the premises. The notice shall be adequate if it is in substantially the following form: You are advised that your lease is terminated effective immediately. You shall have 7 days from the delivery of this letter to vacate the premises. This action is taken because (cite the noncompliance). If such noncompliance is of a nature that the tenantshould be given an opportunity to cure it, deliver a written noticeto the tenant specifying the noncompliance, including a notice that, if the noncompliance is not corrected within 7 days from the date the written notice is delivered, the landlord shall terminate the rental agreement by reason thereof. Examples of such noncompliance include, but are not limited to, activities in contravention of the lease or this act such as having or permitting unauthorized pets, guests, or vehicles; parking in an unauthorized manner or permitting such parking; or failing to keep the premises clean and sanitary. The notice shall be adequate if it is in substantially the following form: You are hereby notified that (cite the noncompliance). Demand is hereby made that you remedy the noncompliance within 7 days of receipt of this notice or your lease shall be deemed terminated and you shall vacate the premises upon such termination. If this same conduct or conduct of a similar nature is repeated within 12 months, your tenancy is subject to termination without your being given an opportunity to cure the noncompliance.

(3) If the tenant fails to pay rent when due and the default continues for 3 days, excluding Saturday, Sunday, and legal holidays, after delivery of written demand by the landlord for payment of the rent or possession of the premises, the landlord may terminate the rental agreement. Legal holidays for the purpose of this section shall be court-observed holidays only. The 3-day notice shall contain a statement in substantially the following form: You are hereby notified that you are indebted to me in the sum of dollars for the rent and use of the premises (address of leased premises, including county), Florida, now occupied by you and that I demand payment of the rent or possession of the premises within 3 days (excluding Saturday, Sunday, and legal holidays) from the date of delivery of this notice, to wit: on or before the day of , 19. (landlord’s name, address and phone number)

(4) The delivery of the written notices required by subsections (1), (2), and (3) shall be by mailing or delivery of a true copy thereof or, if the tenant is absent from the premises, by leaving a copy thereof at the residence.

(5) If the landlord accepts rent with actual knowledge of a noncompliance by the tenant or accepts performance by the tenant of any other provision of the rental agreement that is at variance with its provisions, or if the tenant pays rent with actual knowledge of a noncompliance by the landlord or accepts performance by the landlord of any other provision of the rental agreement that is at variance with its provisions, the landlord or tenant waives his right to terminate the rental agreement or to bring a civil action for that noncompliance, but not for any subsequent or continuing noncompliance. Any tenant who wishes to defend against an action by the landlord for possession of the unit for noncompliance of the rental agreement or of relevant statutes shall comply with the provisions in s. 83.60(2). This subsection does not apply to that portion of rent subsidies received from a local, state, or national government or an agency of local, state, or national government; however, waiver will occur if an action has not been instituted within 45 days of the noncompliance.

(6) If the rental agreement is terminated, the landlord shall comply with s. 83.49(3). History: s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 23, ch. 82-66; s. 6, ch. 83-151; s. 14, ch. 83-217; s. 6, ch. 87-195; s. 6, ch. 93-255. 83.57 Termination of tenancy without specific term. A tenancy without a specific duration, as defined in s. 83.46(2) or (3), may be terminated by either party giving written notice in the manner provided in s. 83.56(4), as follows:

(1) When the tenancy is from year to year, by giving not less than 60 days’ notice prior to the end of any annual period;

(2) When the tenancy is from quarter to quarter, by giving not less than 30 days’ notice prior to the end of any quarterly period;

(3) When the tenancy is from month to month, by giving not less than 15 days’ notice prior to the end of any monthly period; and

(4) When the tenancy is from week to week, by giving not less than 7 days’ notice prior to the end of any weekly period.

History: s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 3, ch. 81-190; s. 15, ch. 83-217. 83.58 Remedies; tenant holding over. If the tenant holds over and continues in possession of the dwelling unit or any part thereof after the expiration of the rental agreement without the permission of the landlord, the landlord may recover possession of the dwelling unit in the manner provided for in s. 83.59 F. S. 1973. The landlord may also recover double the amount of rent due on the dwelling unit, or any part thereof, for the period during which the tenant refuses to surrender possession.

 

83.59 Right of action for possession.

(1) If the rental agreement is terminated and the tenant does not vacate the premises, the landlord may recover possession of the dwelling unit as provided in this section.

(2) A landlord, his attorney, or his agent, applying for the removal of a tenant shall file in the county court of the county where the premises are situated a complaint describing the dwelling unit and stating the facts that authorize its recovery. A landlord’s agent is not permitted to take any action other than the initial filing of the complaint, unless the landlord’s agent is an attorney. The landlord is entitled to the summary procedure provided in s. 51.011 F. S. 1971, and the court shall advance the cause on the calendar.

(3) The landlord shall not recover possession of a dwelling unit except:

(a) In an action for possession under subsection (2) or other civil action in which the issue of right of possession is determined;

(b) When the tenant has surrendered possession of the dwelling unit to the landlord; or

(c) When the tenant has abandoned the dwelling unit. In the absence of actual knowledge of abandonment, it shall be presumed that the tenant has abandoned the dwelling unit if he is absent from the premises for a period of time equal to one-half the time for periodic rental payments. However, this presumption shall not apply if the rent is current or the tenant has notified the landlord, in writing, of an intended absence.

(4) The prevailing party is entitled to have judgment for costs and execution therefor. History: s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 1, ch. 74-146; s. 24, ch. 82-66; s. 1, ch. 92-36. 83.595 Choice of remedies upon breach by tenant.

(1) If the tenant breaches the lease for the dwelling unit and the landlord has obtained a writ of possession, or the tenant has surrendered possession of the dwelling unit to the landlord, or the tenant has abandoned the dwelling unit, the landlord may:

(a) Treat the lease as terminated and retake possession for his own account, thereby terminating any further liability of the tenant; or

(b) Retake possession of the dwelling unit for the account of the tenant, holding the tenant liable for the difference between rental stipulated to be paid under the lease agreement and what, in good faith, the landlord is able to recover from a reletting; or

(c) Stand by and do nothing, holding the lessee liable for the rent as it comes due.

(2) If the landlord retakes possession of the dwelling unit for the account of the tenant, the landlord has a duty to exercise good faith in attempting to relet the premises, and any rentals received by the landlord as a result of the reletting shall be deducted from the balance of rent due from the tenant. For purposes of this section, “good faith in attempting to relet the premises” means that the landlord shall use at least the same efforts to relet the premises as were used in the initial rental or at least the same efforts as the landlord uses in attempting to lease other similar rental units but does not require the landlord to give a preference in leasing the premises over other vacant dwelling units that the landlord owns or has the responsibility to rent. History: s. 2, ch. 87-369; s. 4, ch. 88-379. 83.60 Defenses to action for rent or possession; procedure.

(1) In an action by the landlord for possession of a dwelling unit based upon nonpayment of rent or in an action by the landlord under s. 83.55 seeking to recover unpaid rent, the tenant may defend upon the ground of a material noncompliance with s. 83.51(1) F.S. 1973, or may raise any other defense, whether legal or equitable, that he may have, including the defense of retaliatory conduct in accordance with s. 83.64. The defense of a material noncompliance with s. 83.51(1) F.S. 1973 may be raised by the tenant if 7 days have elapsed after the delivery of written notice by the tenant to the landlord, specifying the noncompliance and indicating the intention of the tenant not to pay rent by reason thereof. Such notice by the tenant may be given to the landlord, the landlord’s representative as designated pursuant to s. 83.50(1), a resident manager, or the person or entity who collects the rent on behalf of the landlord. A material noncompliance with s. 83.51(1) F.S. 1973 by the landlord is a complete defense to an action for possession based upon nonpayment of rent, and, upon hearing, the court or the jury, as the case may be, shall determine the amount, if any, by which the rent is to be reduced to reflect the diminution in value of the dwelling unit during the period of noncompliance with s. 83.51(1) F.S. 1973. After consideration of all other relevantissues, the court shall enter appropriate judgment.

(2) In an action by the landlord for possession of a dwelling unit, if the tenant interposes any defense other than payment, the tenant shall pay into the registry of the court the accrued rent as alleged in the complaint or as determined by the court and the rent which accrues during the pendency of the proceeding, when due. The clerk shall notify the tenant of such requirement in the summons. Failure of the tenant to pay the rent into the registry of the court or to file a motion to determine the amount of rent to be paid into the registry within 5 days, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, after the date of service of process constitutes an absolute waiver of the tenant’s defenses other than payment, and the landlord is entitled to an immediate default without further notice or hearing thereon. In the event a motion to determine rent is filed, documentation in support of the allegation that the rent as alleged in the complaint is in error is required. Public housing tenants or tenants receiving rent subsidies shall be required to deposit only that portion of the full rent for which the tenant is responsible pursuant to federal, state, or local program in which they are participating.

History: s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 7, ch. 83-151; s. 7, ch. 87-195; s. 7, ch. 93-255. 83.61 Disbursement of funds in registry of court; prompt final hearing. When the tenant has deposited funds into the registry of the court in accordance with the provisions of s. 83.60(2) and the landlord is in actual danger of loss of the premises or other personal hardship resulting from the loss of rental income from the premises, the landlord may apply to the court for disbursement of all or part of the funds or for prompt final hearing. The court shall advance the cause on the calendar. The court, after preliminary hearing, may award all or any portion of the funds on deposit to the landlord or may proceed immediately to a final resolution of the cause. History: s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 2, ch. 74-146. 83.62 Restoration of possession to landlord.

(1) In an action for possession, after entry of judgment in favor of the landlord, the clerk shall issue a writ to the sheriff describing the premises and commanding him to put the landlord in possession after 24 hours’ notice conspicuously posted on the premises.

(2) At the time the sheriff executes the writ of possession, the landlord or his agent may remove any personal property found on the premises to or near the property line. If requested by the landlord to do so, the sheriff shall stand by to keep the peace while the landlord changes the locks and removes the personal property from the premises. Neither the sheriff nor the landlord or his agent shall be liable to the tenant or any other party for the loss, destruction, or damage to the property after it has been removed. History: s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 3, ch. 82-66; s. 5, ch. 88-379. 83.625 Power to award possession and enter money judgment. In an action by the landlord for possession of a dwelling unit based upon nonpayment of rent, if the court finds the rent is due, owing, and unpaid and by reason thereof the landlord is entitled to possession of the premises, the court, in addition to awarding possession of the premises to the landlord, shall direct, in an amount which is within its jurisdictional limitations, the entry of a money judgment with costs in favor of the landlord and against the tenant for the amount of money found due, owing, and unpaid by the tenant to the landlord. However, no money judgment shall be entered unless service of process has been effected by personal service or, where authorized by law, by certified or registered mail, return receipt, or in any other manner prescribed by law or the rules of the court; and no money judgment may be entered except in compliance with the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure. The prevailing party in the action may also be awarded attorney’s fees and costs. History: s. 1, ch. 75-147; s. 8, ch. 87-195; s. 6, ch. 88-379.

 

83.62 Restoration of possession to landlord.

(1) In an action for possession, after entry of judgment in favor of the landlord, the clerk shall issue a writ to the sheriff describing the premises and commanding the sheriff to put the landlord in possession after 24 hours’ notice conspicuously posted on the premises.

(2) At the time the sheriff executes the writ of possession or at any time thereafter, the landlord or the landlord’s agent may remove any personal property found on the premises to or near the property line. Subsequent to executing the writ of possession, the landlord may request the sheriff to stand by to keep the peace while the landlord changes the locks and removes the personal property from the premises. When such a request is made, the sheriff may charge a reasonable hourly rate, and the person requesting the sheriff to stand by to keep the peace shall be responsible for paying the reasonable hourly rate set by the sheriff. Neither the sheriff nor the landlord or the landlord’s agent shall be liable to the tenant or any other party for the loss, destruction, or damage to the property after it has been removed.

History.–s. 2, ch. 73-330; s. 3, ch. 82-66; s. 5, ch. 88-379; s. 8, ch. 94-170; s. 1375, ch. 95-147; s. 2, ch. 96-146.