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What can i do to fight an eviction stating i didn't pay rent when I did in Florida

Jacksonville, FL |

I had some car trouble and paid rent a little late, racked up to $745 and I paid $850 for november and haven't been able to pay for december yet as I'm waiting on my paycheck on the 14th, I've been talking with the office back and forth trying to let them know I was going to have everything paid and such then I get the notice of eviction proceedings on december 8, so at this point november should be completely paid for and they are just waiting on december's payment but I am still getting evicted, is there anything I can do to fight this?

This may be helpful in finding out if I have any defense. 1) The amount listed on the eviction paperwork is $745.00 and for the month of November I have paid $850.00. 2) I called the Grande Court office on December 3rd at approximately 1:00 pm and spoke with a rep due to someone banging on my door the day before and asked what was going on, I asked her specifically if there were any issues with my account and she advised me that everything was ok. 3) I have not received credit on my account for 8 months that my washer and dryer was not operational, the washer and dryer cost $35.00 per month totaling in a credit of $280.00. If this credit was applied to the account for the month of November it would never have fallen past due and the late fees for that month would never have been assessed. Could I pay what is due to the court and move without an eviction at this point?

Attorney Answers 3


Based on what you said, you didn't actually pay rent. In any case, you can fight it by deposition the rent with the court, then you will be allowed to assert defenses. Whether you have defenses or not I don't know, you would need an attorney to review your situation, the notice to see if it was done properly, etc. You might want to contact Legal Aid in Jacksonville to see if you qualify for any assistance from them.

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Because you have been late on your rent payment, your landlord has the right to post a 3-day notice on your door which demands that you pay rent in FULL within those three days or have your lease agreement terminated. Once the 3-day period has expired and the landlord has filed an eviction against you (which appears to be the case in your situation) they have the right to terminate your residency and get an eviction against you even if you NOW agree to pay everything. As the individual above said, perhaps you have some defenses to rent payment; but based on what information you chose to share, that is not likely. It may be worth speaking with an attorney (Jacksonville Area Legal Aid "JALA" was a great suggestion!) to make sure you don't have defenses... but honestly, it sounds like the most likely possibility of being able to stay is if you work something out with the landlord and get them to cancel the eviction proceedings; unfortunately, this is not something they have to agree no matter what you offer. But they are people too, and maybe if you offer to pay your balance in full and reimburse them for the costs they've now incurred in having to file an eviction against you, they'll allow you to stay.

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I agree with Attorney Murrell but would add that you may want to consider looking at your lease agreement as well. In some occasions (not often), the lease may require different procedures/time frames from what are stated in the Florida statutes for defaults on rent payment or other provisions of the lease agreement. As Mr. Murrell stated, hopefully you are be able to work out an agreement with the apartment complex in either case. All the best!

The information contained in this answer is not,nor is it intended to be, legal advice. Please consult an attorney for information related to your specific situation. Further, this answer does not form an attorney-client relationship between the attorney and the individual(s) or entity requesting information.

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