Ashlyn Robinson Banks Outlines Difficult Non-Monetary Default Evictions for Commercial Leasing Law & Strategy
Ashlyn Robinson Banks authored an article for the June 2020 edition of the Commercial Leasing Law & Strategy published by ALM’s Law Journal Newsletters wherein she explores options for commercial landlords considering evictions for tenants who violate non-monetary provisions of their leases. Landlords often consider adherence to these contractual obligations just as important as collecting rent because these provisions allow landlords to ensure that their property is properly maintained.
However, judges are often more hesitant to grant evictions for non-monetary default relative to their willingness to evict tenants who fail to pay rent. Due to the highly state-specific landlord/tenant law landscape, Banks focused on Florida law, which unfortunately does not provide much guidance on relief for non-monetary defaults.
“Part 1 of Florida Statutes Chapter 83 governs nonresidential tenancies,” Banks said. “This chapter contains only one subsection that explicitly address non-monetary Defaults. Florida Statute 83.20(3) requires the landlord to give its tenant written notice when the tenant has materially breached the lease in some monetary way.”
The statute provides guidance on key considerations for written notices, including that it should be given with 15-days to cure the breach or possession of the premises (unless the agreement states otherwise), include a detailed description of the breach and how it is damaging, and be served by mail, hand delivery or posting with proof the tenant was informed of the default and with adequate time to cure.
However, Florida statute offers no guidance as to what constitutes a material breach, so Banks also offers previous cases in the state and outside in outside jurisdictions to provide guidance on approaches landlords can take.
For the full article, which also includes an tips on “next steps” depending on a tenant’s response, please click here.