Under Florida law, a trespass occurs when a person willfully enters or remains on a property without authorization. If invited in and then told to leave but the person refuses, that is also a trespass.
In Florida, Trespass is defined under two statutes:
Florida Statute 810.08 – Trespass in a Structure or Conveyance
Florida Statute 810.09 – Trespass on Property Other than a Structure or Conveyance
Florida Statute 810.011 provides the definitions needed to understand the law:
Structure - a building of any kind, either temporary or permanent, which has a roof over it, together with the curtilage (link to our blog) thereof.
Dwelling - a building or conveyance of any kind, including any attached porch, whether such building or conveyance is temporary or permanent, mobile or immobile, which has a roof over it and is designed to be occupied by people lodging therein at night, together with the curtilage thereof.
Conveyance - any motor vehicle, ship, vessel, railroad vehicle or car, trailer, aircraft, or sleeping car; and “to enter a conveyance” includes taking apart any portion of the conveyance.
Trespass in a Structure or Conveyance
2nd Degree Misdemeanor
Max 60 days in jail; or
Up to 6 months probation
Trespass on Property Other than Structure or Conveyance
1st degree Misdemeanor
Max 1 year in jail
Up to 12 months probation
Additionally, the Judge may order a No Contact Order and a Stay Away Order.
Different defenses are available depending on the facts of the case, however, not every case will have a defense. The defenses can be legal or factual in nature such as:
Victim lacks standing or authority
Lack of notice
Lack of communication leave
Implied or express invitation to enter or remain