Jurisdictional Limits Met by Non-Lawyer Eviction Service

Eviction Services and Landlord Tenant Florida

Non-lawyers and non-attorney eviction services may be at a disadvantage when it comes to the intricacies of Florida landlord/tenant law. Case in point, in the ruling below the Broward Small Claims Court was limited to awarding only $5,000.00 dollars in damages due to jurisdictional bounds.  It is important to accurately estimate your damages prior to filing a lawsuit. An eviction service or pro se litigant may not have the expertise to contemplate the full range of damages available to a Plaintiff in court.

GREGORY Y. MARSHALL, SR. and YVONNE MARSHALL, Plaintiffs, vs. DELORES BULLARD, Defendant. County Court, 17th Judicial Circuit in and for Broward County. Case No. 11-17232 COCE (53). March 12, 2012. Robert W. Lee, Judge. Counsel: Gregory Y. Marshall, Sr. and Yvonne Marshall, Pompano Beach, pro se Plaintiffs. Nathaniel E. Green, for Defendant.


This cause came before the Court for trial on March 9, 2011. In this case, the Plaintiff, as tenants, brought a damages claim against Delores Bullard, as landlord, for damages arising out of constructive eviction. At the same time, Bullard brought a counterclaim against the Plaintiffs, for damages including unpaid rent. The Court’s having review the entire Court file; received evidence; made findings of credibility consistent with this judgment; heard argument; reviewed the relevant legal authorities; and been sufficiently advised in the premises, the Court finds as follows:


The Plaintiffs are entitled to the sum of $5,000.00 as damages from the Defendant, DELORES BULLARD. (While the Plaintiffs proved damages in excess of $5,000.00, they are limited to this amount because they chose to file this claim under the small claims rules. Rule 7.010(b).) However, the Defendant is entitled to a set-off from the Plaintiffs in the amount of $875.00, representing one month’s unpaid rent. The Plaintiffs shall further recover from the Defendant, DELORES BULLARD, the additional sum of $330.00 in court costs; while the Defendant is entitled to an additional sum for costs upon prevailing on her counterclaim in the amount of $336.00. The total recovery for the Plaintiffs from the Defendant, DELORES BULLARD, is $4,119.00. Therefore, the final net judgment after set-off of award is $4,119.00 in favor of the Plaintiffs, GREGORY Y. MARSHALL, SR. and YVONNE MARSHALL. All sums awarded in this judgment shall bear interest at the rate of 4.75 per annum until paid, for which sums let execution issue forthwith.

Posted on July 17, 2012 in Law Review

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