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Florida Land Use & Zoning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Land Use & Zoning and Landlord - Tenant for Florida on
Q: Aunt filed unlawful detainer. and told to move I'm on ssdi. what can I do for help

3 rivers won't help says conflict of int. I bought shed from a family member that doesn't live on property and I have been paying rent since Jan 2019 w/no complaint. It has electric and water. She let a granddaughter, kids, & her boyfriend move a shed & camper here and they made a... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron
answered on Jun 19, 2022

You could try the Fla. Bar Lawyers Referral Service and ask for a Low Fee Panel attorney - see https://lrs.floridabar.org/

However, in the event that there is no law that protects you from the code enforcement authorities, there is little or nothing a lawyer can do. Schedule a consultation...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Civil Litigation and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: In FL is it illegal/can I be sued for building a fence off of my neighbors existing fence?

I bought my property less than a year ago. On the right side my neighbors already had a 4ft wire fence in place (about a 30 year old fence). My husband and I wanted to cross fence our property to make an area for our dogs. To do this we bought supplies and connected it to the existing boundary... Read more »

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage
answered on Jun 6, 2022

You do not become a joint owner of the fence. You are not allowed to attach anything to their fence without permission from the owner of the fence. I doubt they will give you permission now. Your best option is to put posts on your land and attach the fence to your posts. You might need to... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Landlord - Tenant and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: If I have a house on a canal or body of water what legal concerns come with renting out my dock for boaters to rent?

Do I have rights to rent my dock since I don't "own the water"? What happens if they crash into my dock? Any legal concerns or suits that can be brought against me as the dock owner?

Jane Kim
Jane Kim
answered on May 8, 2022

If they crash into your dock, you'd have a lawsuit against them.

If someone drowns and the heirs may blame you for poor maintenance of the dock.

Here is a good resource as to what you'd need to establish lease terms, responsibilities, disclaimers and protections:...
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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: Question regarding ingress/egress easement maintenance rights

Question: Our access to our homes is through a platted ingress/egress over privately held land (outside of our subdivision). As homeowners using this easement, what rights do we have to make improvements to the easement? The plat shows the easement as a 50' wide easement; however, the path is... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on May 5, 2022

If you have an easement for access to your property, in general you have the right to maintain the roadway. So, within reason, the landowner cannot object if you make the improvements you mention.

2 Answers | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Opening a dog park/bar/cafe in Oakland Park Fl and wondering about zoning and permitting needed. It is b-2 zoning now.

We want to create a fun and safe space for dogs to socialize but also for humans to be able to have a drink, coffee, or sandwich while utilizing the wifi and getting some work done. We have a location in mind and it is b-2 zoning. We just are not sure if this is allowed or what we need to do to get... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron
answered on May 4, 2022

Good idea; I would drop by with my dog if it flies. First speak to Oakland Park Planning & Zoning staff, and I recommend you go in person in order to review and discuss the list of uses permitted in that zoning category, and to discuss if your intended uses can fit with their interpretation of... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: In Florida can you be trespassed for walking in a non-gated housing community that simply has a sign saying

"Private community for residents only" off of the public street?

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Apr 30, 2022

Arguably, when you read the sign, you were automatically "trespassed".

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Being denied building a pool in bc it is more than 20% of the total land. Shouldn’t it be 65% total for house and pool?

Section 517.6 of the LDC states, “Principal structures shall not cover more than forty-five (45) percent of the total lot area. Accessory structures may cover up to an additional twenty (20) percent of the total lot area beyond that allowed for the principal structure”

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Mar 4, 2022

It appears to me that there is a disagreement regarding the area of the proposed pool. You write that you are being denied a permit because the proposed pool would be more than 20% of the lot area. If that is correct, assuming a pool is an "accessory structure", you are asking to be... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Florida on
Q: How long do I have to respond to a home owner association letter after receiving. Ex they told me to pressure wash s

Four days ago I received a letter that I needed to pressure wash the side of my house. Two days after I receive the letter I went outside and pressure wash the side of my house and it is squeaky clean. Four days after receiving the letter they sent somebody out to come and pressure wash my house... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Mar 2, 2022

You apparently fixed the problem within the 4 days, so what is the difficulty? Did you respond in writing to their ultimatum??

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1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Appeals / Appellate Law, Environmental and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Live in a CDD, adjacent to StormWater Area & wetland. Purchased for privacy. Area behind my home is floodzone AE.

There's a "No Public Access" permit condition in deed restrictions, "no public access" sign at entrance. The plat illegally shows "RECREATION"

People ignored the sign, talking and disturbing me at all hours. Property Mgmt sent a letter stating the area... Read more »

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage
answered on Feb 19, 2022

You can use the “Find a Lawyer” link on this page. Lawyers cannot contact you first. The dismissal with prejudice seems very harsh just for not attaching the documents.

Q: Can I sue city to recover excessive fines?

I was fined 16k for violating city code on short term rentals. I moved so didn't receive the 1st notice warning and they did not post it at the house as required once returned. I received a notification to appear before special magistrate a few months later. I hadnt rented short term for a... Read more »

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick
answered on Feb 1, 2022

Sure anyone can sue anyone else at any time for anything--including this situation.

But I don't recommend trying it without a lawyer.

Whether you have a good claim or not depends on what the code violations were for.

Hire a lawyer to investigate this case and advise you on what to do.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Can my next door neighbor build a fence on an easment

We share a driveway

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jan 29, 2022

If the fence would impair your use of your easement, no. Talk to the building department about any permit it has issued. Or, if nothing else would work, see an attorney about getting an injunction.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: If I am part of a shared easement with two other property owners, can I grant an easement of necessity to a third party?

I live in Okaloosa County Florida and I have two pieces of land that share a common easement with two other properties. The easement was created prior to the purchase to protect all parties as well as provide ingress/egress, access for utilities, etc. There is a neighboring property, located to the... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jan 26, 2022

You could grant an easement across your parcels, but that wouldn't do the owner of the landlocked parcel much good unless the other landowners were to do the same.

2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Land Use & Zoning and Landlord - Tenant for Florida on
Q: Do I have any land rights?

I own a mobile home and have been in it for 20 years on the same land. Do not own the land been paying lot rent. Owner sold land and plans to rezone commercial. Served eviction. Do I have any legal options? People have told me about living there for a certain amount of time that I may have land... Read more »

Phillip William Gunthert
Phillip William Gunthert
answered on Jan 25, 2022

No, the people do not know what they are talking about. What they may be trying to reference is "Adverse Possession", you can look this up, but this is not applicable to your circumstances because you have just been a renter, paying rent. If you have a lease or rental agreement, you... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: What actions can I take against a neighbor who has placed items on my property?

I purchased a piece of property to build a new home, we have closed and the deed has been filed. The neighboring lot is also building a new home and their contractor has placed a dumpster and the spoils from digging a pool on my property without permission. How can I force them to remove it... Read more »

Linda Liang
Linda Liang
answered on Jan 10, 2022

Trespass. You can sue them for trespassing.

2 Answers | Asked in Foreclosure, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: My mom died June 17 I’m staying in her house with her husband and her brother. I have been paying the mortgage on time

Her husband is money hungry and wants to sell the house. She left a will I just found leaving everything to me what can I do thanks also husband signed a paper saying he does not help her with the mortgage at all please help

Jane Kim
Jane Kim
answered on Dec 15, 2021

You must get a probate attorney and probate the will.

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Agricultural Law and Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Do the 7yrs in adverse possession claim in Florida starts the date of actual possession or the date you file the claim?
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Nov 19, 2021

The date of actual possession.

You refer to Florida Statute 95.18 Real property actions; adverse possession without color of title (one of the two adverse possession statutes in Florida):

"(1) When the possessor has been in actual continued possession of real property for 7...
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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Florida on
Q: Limitation on parking due to zoning.

I live in Palm Beach County Florida and my landlord stated that the property is only zoned for 18 parking spaces. The building is classified as a multi-family dwelling and is 17,971 square ft. The lot is 1.53 acres

20 apartments with two bedrooms each.

Ample space for parking but... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Nov 6, 2021

You had best ask this question of the county planning and zoning agency.

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: My dad an stepmother bought a piece of property together some years ago,she wanted to build a house on it.

My dad didn't want to put any money in the house to be built,so he did not. About 2yrs went by an my father took a nasty fall down the balcony stairs one night an now he has neurological problems an of course on medication. One evening i looked up the property an it use to be in both there... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Oct 28, 2021

It wouldn't be your "inheritance" until he were to die. But you could talk to an attorney about possibly becoming his guardian and asking that the deed be set aside.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: My Grandfather fought in court for his land since he had since he was 16. He built a small house there.

Then met my grandma and had 4 kids (never married). They broke up when my mom was in her early teens. He moved in with an other woman. Years later my grandma passes and his son lived in the home on and off. In Vieques there was some property thing that happened and his son put his name on that... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron
answered on Oct 5, 2021

So you're talking about property in Vieques, Puerto Rico? If so, you must consult an attorney who is a member of the Puerto Rico Bar Association (either a lawyer in Puerto Rico or one who is a member of that Bar but practices elsewhere). Also, even if you were talking about property in... Read more »

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