The property next door to mine is vacant and in foreclosure. The owner abandoned the property last year and has never been back to check it. Someone broke into the property recently and the back patio door is smashed.
I was wondering if I had any grounds to file suit against the owner to make her fix the door and secure the property to prevent future crime? I'm afraid for the safety of my home and family because of this. I live in Florida. Thanks
2 Answers from Attorneys
Sounds like a code compliance issues. Notify your appropriate government department and let them handle it. You could probably file suit but it will cost you money and you cannot recovery any of those costs.
I agree you should notify the code enforcement authority. If you live in a homeowners' association governed by 720, you might contact the association to ask it to take action. Similarly, if your property is governed by such an association, you could sue (after demanding the necessary statutory mediation) to force the owner to repair. In that case, you may be able to get a judgment that includes attorneys' fees, because there is a statutory prevaling party entitlement to fees. Of course, it may not be an easy matter to collect on the judgment if the owner is already in foreclosure.