Unfortunately, being a landlord may put you in a position to have to evict a tenant. The Florida eviction process is a fairly straightforward procedure that provides a timely removal of an undesirable tenant.
While evictions are most commonly sought due to lack of payment, there are many other reasons for a landlord to file a Florida eviction. Actually any clause within the rental agreement that isn’t being honored can be grounds for a successful eviction.
Regardless of the reason, an evicion in the state of Florida will go through some or all of the following steps:
Three Day Notice
The landlord can either post it himself on the tenant’s door or hand deliver the form directly to the tenant. This step notifies the tenant to pay the rent in full or vacate the property within three business days. It should be signed by the landlord and include the tenant’s name, address, amount of rent due, and date of notice.
Five Day Notice or Residential Evictions Summons
This form must be served by the sheriff’s office or a private server to the tenant. This document informs the tenant that they have five days to answer to the court with any reasons why they should not be forced to move. Along with the Five Day Notice, an official Complaint for Removal of Tenant package should be served as well. This package will include a copy of the Three Day Notice and a copy of the rental agreement.
Request for Default
This is the next step only if the tenant has not answered the court. It is the equivalent of requesting a final judgment of eviction from the judge.
Writ of Possession
The judge will sign a Writ of Possession after receiving the Request for Default documents. The Writ of Possession will be delivered to the County Sheriff.
The County Sheriff will post a note at the door informing the tenant the date they must move out and when the eviction will take place, usually within 42 to 72 hours. The Sheriff will return to the premises on the scheduled date and time and evict the tenant. All tenant possessions will be removed from the premises and the landlord will be granted possession of the property.
While evictions are not pleasant for either the landlord or the tenant, they are a neccessary tool in preserving the value and profitability of a rental property.
Donna Hearne-Gousse is an experienced Florida evictions attorney who processes evictions throughout Palm Beach and Broward counties.
The Law Office of Donna Hearne-Gousse