Building code violations in Florida

The legislature of Florida has passed a series of laws establishing the duty of care of the owner and operator of a building for the people who pass through the property. The law sets a mandate to carefully oversee each and every aspects of building design and construction, as this is seen as the most efficient method of guaranteeing the greatest possible safety for visitors, employees and other occupants of the property.

Violations of the Florida Building Code may be noted by inspectors and the property owner may be required to repair them at its own expense. The repairs must be completed within a reasonable amount of time, and failure to do so may be punished by a fine of between $500 and $5,000 for each violation. Material code violations are considered to have occurred any time part of the structure results in harm to another, may be reasonably expected to harm someone, causes significant damage to the building or creates a situation where such building damage might occur.

An appeals process has been established for these types of matters. The property owner or other responsible party will have 30 days to file a dispute with the local jurisdiction, which will cause the fine to be abated while it sends the issue on to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. The local jurisdiction also has the responsibility to maintain clear and accurate records of material violations in its area and to keep those records readily available to the public.

Dangerous conditions on the premises of any building in Florida will leave the property owner open for a lawsuit in the event of an injury. It may be helpful to consult with an attorney about premises liability, the owner’s responsibilities and the reasonable expectations for compensation for someone who has been hurt as a result.

Source: Online Sunshine, “553.781 Licensee accountability.—“, December 17, 2014