Landlord filed an eviction in July 2012 for breach of the lease by causing a disturbance at the premises. In December 2012 the parties entered into a settlement agreement whereby Tenant pledged not to cause further disturbances. In February 2013 the landlord served the tenant with a ten day notice of lease termination for causing a disturbance, and filed a motion to enforce the settlement agreement. At the hearing the court ruled that the landlord had not proved a breach, and declared the tenant the prevailing party, and thus entitled to attorney’s fees. The landlord argued that with the settlement agreement still in effect, and thus the original eviction complaint still pending, the tenant should not be deemed the “prevailing party.”
In April 2013, the tenant moved to dismiss the original eviction complaint, noting the landlord had signed a new lease with the tenant since December 2012. As the lease that the original eviction was based on had expired, the court granted tenant’s motion to dismiss the original eviction complaint, and upheld tenant’s award for attorney’s fees.
5800 SW 20 AVENUE HOLDINGS, LLC, vs. WILLIAMS, County Court, 8th Judicial Circuit in and for Alachua County. Case No. 2012-CC-2917, Division V. May 6, 2015 23 Fla. L. Weekly Supp. 261a