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Florida Land Use & Zoning Questions & Answers
2 Answers | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: 3 of my 6 acres has been used by a neighbor for timber sales without my knowledge. Property is also landlocked. Options?
Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Sep 9, 2021

So you're talking about theft of your timber? If so, the options would be to call the police to initiate criminal charges and/or to file suit for your economic losses. Don't know why you think being landlocked is an issue.

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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: I'm not sure what to say , I sent you a email not long ago . I'm 70yrs old and I own my house an land.

I've been served papers from the owner next-door to me is suing me about my property. there's a lot more issues with this.

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Sep 7, 2021

If you mean you directly sent an email to someone about your legal issue, you cannot re-contact that person by posting to the Justia site. You instead must contact that person directly. Or do you instead mean you previously posted your issue on the Justia site but no one responded? If you mean... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: I am in Florida. When i bought my house the property was fenced. This occurred in 1993. A person moved behind me and has

Lived there since 2013, but never said a word. Now, after cutting all the plants she had, she claims part of my fence was in her property. I paid for a survey and indeed a portion is, which means i would have to tear all lighting, palms, etc. Does the adverse possession law apply since she never... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Jul 31, 2021

Probably, yes. Florida Statute 95.16 provides as follows (in pertinent part):

"Real property actions; adverse possession under color of title.—

(1) When the occupant, ... entered into possession of real property under a claim of title exclusive of any other right, founding...
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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: Can a manufactured house dealer force receipt of a house without them first getting a permit or us having the space?

Last month it's discovered that the easements require a 100' setback, not the 50' that shows up on the survey we were given by the seller which makes it impossible to build anything without a variance.  Got the meeting for that, all is well, hearing set for mid Sep. Friday my... Read more »

Jane Kim
Jane Kim answered on Jul 24, 2021

Your written agreement with the house dealer should have all the answers.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: If there are multiple owners of a property, can one or two people do a quick claim deed for their portion

THERE ARE 45 OWNERS OF A PIECE OF PROPERTY, SOME WOULD LIKE TO SIGN IT OVER TO THE CITY WHERE WE LIVE. SOME DO NOT. CAN SOME PEOPLE DO A QUICK CLAIM AND BE FREE OF ANY OWNERSHIP/LIABILITY? OR MUST EVERYONE DO A QUICK CLAIM?

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Jul 23, 2021

Perhaps. How was this divided ownership come into existence? And what sort of potential liability are you concerned about? Strictly speaking, the grantee (the city) would have to accept the gift to make it complete.

It's "quitclaim", by the way; it means to surrender or...
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2 Answers | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Are they any lawyers on the pro bono list of lawyers whom handle very bad neighbor issues, involving a series of events?

Neighbor issues of on going events of harassment since December 19th-2020 to current. Some involves a fence I paid for $600.00 as I want reimbursement for all the emotional distress and damages he has done to the fence.. He has carpet tacks which he furiously bashed them to fence all across top and... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Jun 18, 2021

There is no "pro bono list of lawyers". I suggest you schedule a consultation with a general practice attorney in your area to at least obtain advice, if not also representation that should start with a cease & desist letter.

If you cannot afford to consult or hire a lawyer,...
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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: Can a Florida HOA issue an amended approval a month after they approved something without the homeowners requesting it?

Our Florida HOA approved and certified our application for a tan fence even though our community guidelines call for white. A month later our fence co contacted the HOA telling them they approved a tan fence, at which time the HOA issued an amended approval for white fencing. Can they do that?

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage answered on Jun 13, 2021

If the fence hadn’t been installed yet, yes, they can correct their error. If the color wasn’t clear from the application, the HOA might be able to amend approval even if the fence was installed. If it was clear from the application the fence was tan, you asked for a variance and you installed... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: How do you go about finding pieces of property that are in disrepair or undeveloped and fix up and aquire it free
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Jun 9, 2021

If you are asking about "squatting" (occupying property knowing it's not yours), you can't acquire title to it free of charge.

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Contracts, Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: If a company donated land to build a library with a reverter clause in 1979, would it be void in 2021 based on this law?

A new library was built in a new location to replace the old one. Just curious to see what could happen to the old library since it has a reverter clause.

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Feb 25, 2021

You ask if it would be void "based on this law", without saying which law you are referring to. Did you leave something out, or did you mean to ask if there is any law that would void it out? I suggest you re-phrase.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: I live on what is considered a private road that the county and city says they wont maintain. Can i closed this off ?

To the public from accessing it? Or make my neighbors help pay for maintenace?

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Feb 20, 2021

You might get away with putting up a gate if you give the others keys. But it is doubtful that you can require them to help maintain the roadway.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: While digging, we broke our neighbor's new sprinkler system, which was unknowingly routed onto our land. He wants 2 sue?

There is no easement in place for it on my survey at all since it's brand-new, nor was there one for the previous owner of his home even if it wasn't new. According to our survey, it's 100% no doubt about it on our property. We have been nothing but nice and willing to work with him,... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Feb 4, 2021

And you want to know if you are liable? No. But if he does sue, ask your homeowner's insurance company to take care of it. by getting an attorney for you.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law and Tax Law for Florida on
Q: Can I have legal/financial problems for not paying taxes on vacant land lots?

Can I have legal/financial problems for not paying taxes on vacant land lots ( Seabring, Highland County, Florida) that my ex-husbands purchased back in 2004 on my name? I stopped paying taxes and other fees on this lots 6-7 years ago, and worry if eventually county can put lean on my house that is... Read more »

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage answered on Feb 1, 2021

The county can auction off the property for unpaid taxes in a tax deed sale. Your bigger concern is if there are any code enforcement violations which have generated fines. If Code Enforcement issues fines it can record liens which attach to any property you own. You also have liability if... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Environmental and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: What law or regulation is allowed or not allowed to install water parks on public beaches in Florida?

What law or regulation is allowed or not allowed to install water parks on public beaches in Florida? Where can I find this document? Which service in the state government issues permits for such business.

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar answered on Jan 20, 2021

A Florida attorney could advise best, but your question remains open at this point. You would probably need to look through various laws on the federal, state, and local level that address land use and zoning. And even then, things like this might not be expressly addressed, but implied, simply by... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Looking to understand the definition of "Commercial activity"

In the city we live in Clermont, Fl, the park rangers and their leader, parks and recreation director, are trying to prevent us from assembling in a public park (Waterfront Park)

The claim is that we are considered commercial activity. They are asking us to fill out waivers, background... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Jan 15, 2021

The first issue is the definition, if any, of "commercial activity" in the city code. There might be a definition that applies to your group even though no money changes hands. If the definition does NOT apply to your group, or there's no definition at all, then the action against... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: I'm interested in buying a landlocked land. but Miami Dade owns the surrounding area. what options do I have to build?
Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Dec 7, 2020

Your options to build don't depend on who owns the surrounding land, they depend on the current zoning. If the zoning is adverse to you, then your options depend on whether you can obtain a variance or a rezoning. The first step would be to contact the County Development Services Division to... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: In Florida, can a HOA member NOT compliant w' Deed Restrictions serve on Board of Directors?

This candidate's excuse is a '5 year statute of limitations for enforcing Deed restrictions' b/c his wife was on the Board for years, & used 'selective enforcement" of restrictions on some while they refused to comply.

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage answered on Nov 30, 2020

If you are a board member you have a duty to consult with the HOA attorney rather than trying to find answers on the internet. If the HOA does not have an attorney, it needs one.

If you are a homeowner, the answer is "it depends" on the language in the HOA documents, what...
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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Please help asap!! I have been trying to get my friends son buried for 2 weeks. Now I'm told I need an affidative

I thought everything was covered until yesterday afternoon 12 hours before service. Now we were told we need an affidative that goes with the plot. Pasco County Court Records have no idea what they are requiring, nor does the funeral director. He is being buried on family property & we have... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Nov 21, 2020

It is unclear who is requiring an affidavit. Ask that person what such an affidavit would recite, and then write one.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: if a abandoned property is left overgrown neglected rundown of no value to the owner.

can i claim this property as squatters rights without legally being prosecuted by law

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Nov 5, 2020

All real property is owned by someone. if whoever does own it finds you squatting on it, the owner can sue you, and also have you criminally charged with trespassing under certain circumstances.

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: I need a property attorney to help me take ownership of my dads land and stop the violations?

My father passed away this year. He owns a home. My name is not on the deed and I still live there. Recently I received many violations by the state of Jacksonville Florida. I feel harassed.

Phillip William Gunthert
Phillip William Gunthert answered on Nov 5, 2020

I am sorry for your loss and the passing of your father, please accept my condolences and sympathy for your loss and this difficult time, You will need to speak with a Florida Probate Attorney, you will also want to get a copy of the deed to have it reviewed. It is likely that some version of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Is a phone/internet/TV company considered a utility in Florida for purposes of being included in a "utilities" easement?
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Oct 28, 2020

it depends, for one thing, upon what company was granted the easement. And it would also depend upon when it was created. if, for example, a power company was granted a "utilities easement" in 1920, it is doubtful that the easement would include cable; although it might include... Read more »

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