If the issues are not resolved after the notices are sent, your landlord likely will file a court case. As a general rule, your landlord will have to file a case
against you as the tenant, not only to evict you but also to recover damages for unpaid rent. In addition, your landlord can file a case to evict you for failure
to comply with the lease, other than the nonpayment of rent. Copies of all leases, rental agreements, contracts or other evidence of leasing must be attached to
After your landlord has waited the required numbers of days, and you have not left the premises or paid the rent due, the landlord may file a court case by filing
a complaint in the county court. The landlord will pay filing fees, ask the Clerk’s Office to issue a summons, and deliver the summons to the sheriff or a private
process server for service on you. The landlord must bring the following documents with him when he files his eviction case at the Leon County Clerk's Office,
located at 301 S Monroe Street, Suite 100, Tallahassee, FL 32301.
The complaint for eviction (three copies - original goes in the case file, one copy is for service on one defendant, and one copy is for mailing)
Summons (original and three copies for one defendant)
Lease agreement (three copies – one for file, one for service on one defendant, and one for mailing)
Notice (three copies – one for file, one for service on one defendant, and one for mailing)
A stamped envelope, addressed to you
Your landlord may be required to file a Non-Military Affidavit, found on page four of this document.
The information needed for completing this affidavit can be obtained from this website. Further, if your landlord
seeks damages, he must complete the Affidavit of Damages, by inserting the amounts sought, along with an explanation for each amount found on page three of
this document. Your landlord may be entitled to keep the security deposit to apply
against damages to the property. Your landlord must send you a notice: Failure to send the notice will result in the landlord’s waiver of the right to claim the deposit.
You will be served with a copy of the complaint and a summons. You must file an answer with the court within the time period noted on the Summons, if you wish to
contest the eviction. You will also need to deposit any outstanding rent with the County Civil Division of the Leon County Clerk’s Office. At this point, the file
will be sent to the judge assigned to the case for further action. You will receive copies of all documents filed in this case, and must provide copies to your landlord
of any document you file in this case.
If you do not file an answer, your landlord may move for default, and the court will issue your landlord a final judgment that will allow the sheriff to evict you.
If you do answer, you may receive a Notice of Hearing that sets a court date. If you do not appear at the hearing, you will lose automatically. If you appear,
you may present your case against the eviction. If you lose, you will owe double the rent for the time that you stayed over, your landlord’s legal expenses, and court
If your eviction case is settled prior to the entry of a final judgment, your landlord must file with the Clerk a
Notice of Dismissal, which will dispose of the case. However, if your landlord
wins the case and a final judgment is entered, the Clerk’s Office will issue a writ of possession to the sheriff, commanding the sheriff to put the landlord back in
possession of the dwelling after 24 hours’ notice has been posted conspicuously on the premises. The landlord then may remove your personal property from the premises.
See Fla. Stat. § 83.62. In any event, if you lose, your landlord will begin eviction, either by changing the locks and asserting a lien on your possession for the
money you owe him, or by removing all your belongings and leaving them on the property line.
The only exception to the above procedure is if you as the tenant have abandoned the premises, or you are absent from the premises for a period of time equal to one-half
the time of periodic rental payments. See Fla. Stat. § 83.59.