Per Florida law, property-owners must give tenants notice to vacate before carrying out an eviction. In Florida, the three-day Notice is the most commonly applied method of serving formal notice to evict when tenants have defaulted on their rent and Florida statute provides a strict format for what defines a legally sufficient three-day notice.
Any number of things can render a notice defective: if you are demanding an incorrect amount for rent; if the notice includes late fees, but your lease agreement makes no mention of such fees; or if the notice fails to give the tenant proper grace period, your three-day notice is defective. Many property-owners attempt to carry out evictions on their own and often fail to follow proper legal procedure when drafting the notice, which often results in a flawed document that renders their eviction suit legally insufficient.
Recent legislation states that in cases involving a defective notice, landlords may be granted leave to amend the notice and continue eviction proceedings once the notice is revised. All the same, because the burden falls to you (the property-owner), a faulty notice will delay your case and may still end in dismissal, which can result in additional costs exceeding three times the amount of the defaulted rent in damages and legal fees payable to your tenant.
If you are a landlord struggling with a tenant refusing to pay rent, it is wise to seek legal counsel prior to making any moves to evict the tenant on your own. Though it may seem simple, drafting a document which accurately protects your legal interests can be quite complex. Consulting with an experienced attorney will ensure that your three-day notice is legally precise and that your rights are adequately protected.
Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida real estate attorney can help your wade through this process and determine a positive solution. Contact him at 813-549-0096.
The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.