Florida Statutes 83.595 – Choice of remedies upon breach or early termination by tenant
Current as of: 2022 | Check for updates | Other versions
If the tenant breaches the rental agreement for the dwelling unit and the landlord has obtained a writ of possession, or the tenant has surrendered possession of the dwelling unit to the landlord, or the tenant has abandoned the dwelling unit, the landlord may:
(1) Treat the rental agreement as terminated and retake possession for his or her own account, thereby terminating any further liability of the tenant;
(2) Retake possession of the dwelling unit for the account of the tenant, holding the tenant liable for the difference between the rent stipulated to be paid under the rental agreement and what the landlord is able to recover from a reletting. If the landlord retakes possession, the landlord has a duty to exercise good faith in attempting to relet the premises, and any rent received by the landlord as a result of the reletting must be deducted from the balance of rent due from the tenant. For purposes of this subsection, the term “good faith in attempting to relet the premises” means that the landlord uses at least the same efforts to relet the premises as were used in the initial rental or at least the same efforts as the landlord uses in attempting to rent other similar rental units but does not require the landlord to give a preference in renting the premises over other vacant dwelling units that the landlord owns or has the responsibility to rent;
(3) Stand by and do nothing, holding the lessee liable for the rent as it comes due; or
(4) Charge liquidated damages, as provided in the rental agreement, or an early termination fee to the tenant if the landlord and tenant have agreed to liquidated damages or an early termination fee, if the amount does not exceed 2 months’ rent, and if, in the case of an early termination fee, the tenant is required to give no more than 60 days’ notice, as provided in the rental agreement, prior to the proposed date of early termination. This remedy is available only if the tenant and the landlord, at the time the rental agreement was made, indicated acceptance of liquidated damages or an early termination fee. The tenant must indicate acceptance of liquidated damages or an early termination fee by signing a separate addendum to the rental agreement containing a provision in substantially the following form:
? I agree, as provided in the rental agreement, to pay $  (an amount that does not exceed 2 months’ rent) as liquidated damages or an early termination fee if I elect to terminate the rental agreement, and the landlord waives the right to seek additional rent beyond the month in which the landlord retakes possession.
? I do not agree to liquidated damages or an early termination fee, and I acknowledge that the landlord may seek damages as provided by law.
(a) In addition to liquidated damages or an early termination fee, the landlord is entitled to the rent and other charges accrued through the end of the month in which the landlord retakes possession of the dwelling unit and charges for damages to the dwelling unit.
Terms Used In Florida Statutes 83.595
- Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
- Dwelling unit: means :(a) A structure or part of a structure that is rented for use as a home, residence, or sleeping place by one person or by two or more persons who maintain a common household. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Early termination fee: means any charge, fee, or forfeiture that is provided for in a written rental agreement and is assessed to a tenant when a tenant elects to terminate the rental agreement, as provided in the agreement, and vacates a dwelling unit before the end of the rental agreement. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Good faith: means honesty in fact in the conduct or transaction concerned. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Landlord: means the owner or lessor of a dwelling unit. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Premises: means a dwelling unit and the structure of which it is a part and a mobile home lot and the appurtenant facilities and grounds, areas, facilities, and property held out for the use of tenants generally. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Rent: means the periodic payments due the landlord from the tenant for occupancy under a rental agreement and any other payments due the landlord from the tenant as may be designated as rent in a written rental agreement. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Rental agreement: means any written agreement, including amendments or addenda, or oral agreement for a duration of less than 1 year, providing for use and occupancy of premises. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Tenant: means any person entitled to occupy a dwelling unit under a rental agreement. See Florida Statutes 83.43
- Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.(b) This subsection does not apply if the breach is failure to give notice as provided in s. 83.575.