Waiver As An Affirmative Defense To
A Florida Residential Eviction Action
Florida Statute § 83.56(5) provides, in
pertinent part, that: “If the landlord accepts rent with actual knowledge of a noncompliance by the tenant or
accepts performance by the tenant of any other provision of the rental agreement that is at variance with its
provisions, … the landlord … waives his or her right to terminate the rental agreement or to bring a civil action
for that noncompliance, but not for any subsequent or continuing noncompliance.”
Essentially, this statutory provision means
that if a landlord accepts rent knowing that the tenant is in default of the lease, the landlord will be deemed to
have waived the right to terminate the residential lease as a result of that default.
LANDLORD RIGHTS TIP: It is unclear whether
this waiver provision applies in situations where the tenant has defaulted in rent. It is, nonetheless, probably a
distinction without a difference because the landlord is unlikely to evict a tenant for non-payment of rent when
the tenant pay the rent, albeit late, before the institution of the eviction lawsuit.
In any event, Florida Statute § 83.56(5) does
not apply if the default by the tenant is repeated or continued.