Many of the residents living in Kissimmee, Florida call rental properties their home. Whether you live in an apartment or a rental home, you have certain rights that you should be aware of. If a dispute with your landlord arises, you have the right to fight back against an attempted eviction.
You do not have to face the threat of eviction on your own. With our firm on your side, you could resolve the dispute and potentially remain on the property. Discuss your options with an evictions attorney in Kissimmee before you agree to give up your home and leave the property.
An Eviction Could Occur for Different Reasons
Various reasons exist for why a landlord might choose to pursue eviction. The most common of these reasons is the failure to pay rent. However, other violations of the terms of the lease could also serve as grounds for eviction.
Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.56(3) governs evictions for the nonpayment of rent. Before a tenant is evicted based on a nonpayment of rent, the landlord must pay the deficiency and get caught up.
Evictions can also occur as the result of a violation of the lease. Lease agreements are legally binding contracts, and the consequences of breaking them are often eviction and removal from the home.
A contract could have countless terms that may lead to an eviction. These included having unauthorized pets or allowing criminal acts to occur on the premises. The specific terms of the lease will determine what grounds are available.
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The Eviction Process Has Several Steps
A landlord cannot simply demand that you leave your rental property. They are also prohibited by law from forcibly evicting you without notice. Rights protect you as a tenant, and enforcing those rights could prevent an unreasonable removal from your home.
The landlord must follow a series of steps for an eviction to be valid. Any deviation from this process could render the entire eviction unlawful.
Your Landlord Must Provide You With Notice
You are entitled to formal notice of eviction before the landlord can remove you from the property. The length of that notice depends on the reason your landlord is pursuing an eviction.
If the property owner is evicting you due to lack of payment of rent, the landlord must provide you with at least three days to pay before a court proceeding. During that three-day window, you have the right to pay what is owed and remain on the property.
Property owners can use seven-day notices when the eviction is based on the violation of lease terms. If you could correct the violation, the landlord could issue a notice giving you seven days to address the violation or move out.
A seven-day unconditional quit notice could also become relevant. For serious violations you cannot cure, the landlord could issue you a notice to move out without any option to remain on the property.
You Could Fight the Eviction at a Hearing
Once you have received formal notice of an eviction proceeding, the court will hear the case. At the hearing, you will have the opportunity to argue why the court should halt the eviction process.
In some cases, demanding a hearing could result in the dismissal of the eviction case. In others, it could serve as a delay that gives you the chance to reach an agreement with the landlord or leave the property on your terms.
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You Might Have Viable Defenses to an Eviction Action
You could raise many kinds of defenses during an eviction proceeding. The most common defense is that the landlord lacks any viable justification for an eviction. This could involve a landlord attempting to evict a person who has already paid in full.
Technical defenses are also available. If an error in the eviction notice exists or the landlord provided you with the wrong notice period, the court could deny the request for an eviction order. In these cases, the landlord will typically fix the notice and begin the process once more.
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A Landlord May Not Remove You From Your Home on Their Own
Even if a landlord is successful in their eviction case, they do not have the right to forcibly remove a tenant or their property on their own. At no point can your landlord take your removal into their own hands.
They also cannot hire a third party to force you out. Only certain law enforcement officers have the right to carry out an eviction order. A sheriff or constable must undertake this process.
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You Can Maintain Possession of Belongings You Leave on the Property
You also have rights related to your personal property within the home. This is true even after you have moved out at the end of the tenancy. A landlord must provide you with written notice of any abandoned property. This notice must provide you with at least 10 days to claim your property if someone hand-delivered the notice to you.
The time limit is extended to 15 days if you receive the notice by mail. While the landlord cannot dispose of the property until the end of that period, they can charge you storage fees for it. Any unclaimed property following an eviction could be disposed of or sold.
An Attorney From Our Firm Serving Kissimmee, FL Could Resolve Your Eviction
Facing an eviction can be a stressful experience. While the thought of losing your home can be overwhelming, you might be able to fight back. In some cases, you could address the issues and remain in the home.
The attorneys of Bogin, Munns & Munns are prepared to help review your legal options and decide on how you would like to proceed. If your landlord has violated the law, we could help you push back against their efforts to evict you.