Terms Used In Florida Statutes 111.07

  • Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
  • Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
  • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  • Lawsuit: A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
  • person: includes individuals, children, firms, associations, joint adventures, partnerships, estates, trusts, business trusts, syndicates, fiduciaries, corporations, and all other groups or combinations. See Florida Statutes 1.01
  • political subdivision: include counties, cities, towns, villages, special tax school districts, special road and bridge districts, bridge districts, and all other districts in this state. See Florida Statutes 1.01
  • Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
Any agency of the state, or any county, municipality, or political subdivision of the state, is authorized to provide an attorney to defend any civil action arising from a complaint for damages or injury suffered as a result of any act or omission of action of any of its officers, employees, or agents for an act or omission arising out of and in the scope of his or her employment or function, unless, in the case of a tort action, the officer, employee, or agent acted in bad faith, with malicious purpose, or in a manner exhibiting wanton and willful disregard of human rights, safety, or property. Defense of such civil action includes, but is not limited to, any civil rights lawsuit seeking relief personally against the officer, employee, or agent for an act or omission under color of state law, custom, or usage, wherein it is alleged that such officer, employee, or agent has deprived another person of rights secured under the Federal Constitution or laws. Legal representation of an officer, employee, or agent of a state agency may be provided by the Department of Legal Affairs. However, any attorney’s fees paid from public funds for any officer, employee, or agent who is found to be personally liable by virtue of acting outside the scope of his or her employment, or was acting in bad faith, with malicious purpose, or in a manner exhibiting wanton and willful disregard of human rights, safety, or property, may be recovered by the state, county, municipality, or political subdivision in a civil action against such officer, employee, or agent. If any agency of the state or any county, municipality, or political subdivision of the state is authorized pursuant to this section to provide an attorney to defend a civil action arising from a complaint for damages or injury suffered as a result of any act or omission of action of any of its officers, employees, or agents and fails to provide such attorney, such agency, county, municipality, or political subdivision shall reimburse any such defendant who prevails in the action for court costs and reasonable attorney’s fees.