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  • Writer's pictureGus Fernandez

Eviction or Ejectment - What's the Difference?

In Florida, eviction and ejectment are legal processes used to remove individuals from property, but they apply to different situations and are governed by different legal principles.


Eviction

Eviction is a legal process used by landlords to remove tenants from a rental property due to reasons such as non-payment of rent, violation of lease terms, or the expiration of the lease. It is typically faster and more streamlined compared to ejectment because it is governed by specific statutes that provide a clear procedure for landlords to follow. Florida Statutes Title VI, Chapter 83, specifically deals with landlord and tenant relationships, and outlines the process for evictions.

Key aspects of eviction include:

  • Lease Agreement: The process applies to individuals who are parties to a lease or rental agreement.

  • Limited Grounds: Common grounds for eviction include non-payment of rent, violation of lease terms, or holding over after the lease expires.

  • Speedy Process: Eviction proceedings are relatively quick and are handled in county court.

  • Procedure: The process typically starts with the landlord serving a notice to the tenant (e.g., three-day notice for unpaid rent) before filing an eviction suit.

Ejectment

Ejectment is used to resolve disputes where the legal title to property is in question, or when someone is in possession of property without the right to be there, but where there is no landlord-tenant relationship. Ejectment cases are more complex and typically involve situations where a person claims an ownership interest or a right to possess the property independently of a lease agreement.

Key aspects of ejectment include:

  • No Lease Required: Ejectment does not require a landlord-tenant relationship and is often used where there is no formal lease or rental agreement.

  • Disputes Over Right to Possess: It can be used to remove someone who asserts an ownership claim or other possession rights that are contested.

  • Longer Process: The process is generally more formal and lengthier than eviction, as it involves more complex legal questions about the ownership or rights to the property.

  • Circuit Court: Ejectment actions are typically filed in circuit court, and may involve a full trial to resolve the dispute.

In summary, while both eviction and ejectment are mechanisms to remove individuals from property, eviction specifically targets violations of lease agreements under landlord-tenant law, whereas ejectment addresses broader issues of rightful possession and property rights, often without a lease being involved.




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