08/14/2012 09:26:00 AM EST
Pay Up or Get Out: The Landlord's Guide to the Perfect Eviction
By Matthew Sackel*
*Matthew Sackel is an attorney in the Litigation Department in Shutts and Bowen's West Palm Beach Office. He practices commercial litigation with a focus on real estate litigation and commercial landlord tenant law.
Excerpt from Pay Up or Get Out: The Landlord's Guide to the Perfect Eviction, 66 U. Miami L. Rev. 973 (Summer, 2012)
The recent downturn in the economy has spurred many
businesses that thrived for years, such as Linens 'N Things, 2 to fail, leaving
landlords with no choice but to evict tenants and seek damages for rent under
the terms of the lease. South Florida's seasonal climate only exacerbates these
As an attorney who frequently evicts defaulting commercial
tenants, I see lawyers all too often take unnecessary steps that increase
costs, delay eviction, and fail to secure fixtures and property that may
benefit their client. The purpose of this article is to provide practical steps
and analysis for landlords to efficiently evict a defaulting tenant, while at
the same time maximizing their potential to recover rent owed under the lease.
First, this article will discuss the requirement of sending a three-day notice.
Next, it will discuss the steps a landlord should consider if there is valuable
equipment on the property, which a landlord may wish to secure in order to
attract a future tenant. Finally, the article will highlight several issues to
consider when filing an eviction and damages complaint.
I. The Landlord's Options Upon Default
In Florida a landlord typically has three options when faced
with a tenant who defaults on rent payments and vacates the rented premises
before the end of the lease term: (1) the landlord may treat the lease as
terminated and retake possession exclusively for his own purposes; (2) the
landlord may retake possession for the account of ...
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