The Court awarded clients of the firm a big win in a recent landlord/tenant matter by granting a dismissal of the eviction filed against them. The clients came to our firm after their landlord (a property management company) filed an eviction against them for non-payment of rent. While it was correct the tenants did not pay rent on the first day of that month as per their lease, the tenants had hand delivered a 7-day notice to cure to the landlord giving them the proper statutory notice of their obligation to cure a material non-compliance or rent would be withheld pursuant to Florida Statutes 83.51(1)(a) and (b) and 83.60(1)(b).
In this case the tenants suffered a reoccurring leak in the roof that caused water intrusion on two interior walls into their apartment. The leak damaged some furniture and personal items and prevented the tenants from being able to place anything on or along those two walls for fear of further damage to their personal items.
After attempts to negotiate a settlement between the parties a trial was scheduled. At trial the landlord claimed the tenant failed to provide the notice in a timely fashion, testifying it was only provided to the landlord 6 days before the rent was due. However, I was able to successfully show the Judge that our clients made a valid attempt to hand deliver the notice in a timely fashion and were thwarted by the landlord in their efforts to provide notice. In addition, we were able to show the landlords’ continuous neglect and violation of Florida Statute 83.51(1)(a) and (b) which requires a landlord to properly maintain the tenant’s roof and make any necessary repairs in order to avoid further damage to their property. Additionally, I succeeded in showing the Judge that the eviction was filed as a form of retaliation against the tenants for making numerous complaints about the leaking roof. Retaliatory eviction violates Florida Statute 83.60(1)(a). The clients were rewarded in this matter when the Judge agreed to my request to grant an award of costs and attorney’s fees for the client. After the eviction was dismissed we negotiated a settlement for the clients that covered all my attorney’s fees, reimbursed the clients for damage to their property and returned a portion of the rent money held by the Clerk of Court to my clients without need for a further hearing.
Strict laws apply when you rent an apartment or house. If you have a landlord/tenant issue call me today for a free consultation or use the contact form at the top of this page.
Mario, Gunde, Peters, Rhoden & Kelley, LLC celebrated 40 years of service to this community of Brevard County in 2016. With seven attorneys, two offices and free consultations, your legal concern is our priority.