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Business Litigation and Real Property Case Law Updates, January 2023

January 28, 2023

Skyhop Technologies, Inc. v. Narra, Case No. 21-14051 (11th Cir. 2023).
So long as a plaintiff’s claims meet Florida’s connexity requirement, an allegation that an out of state software vendor violated the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1030, against a Florida company constitutes a tort committed in Florida and satisfies the requirements of Florida’s long arm statute under § 48.193(1)(a)(2).

Diaz v. Northwest Florida Water Management District, Case No. 1D21-2699 (Fla. 1st DCA 2023).
Whether a party participated in an administrative proceeding for an improper purpose such that attorney’s fees can be assessed against the party under Florida Statute § 120.595(1)(c) is a factual inquiry and fees can be assessed as the result of just one hearing.

Fries v. Anderson, Case No. 4D22-650 (Fla. 4th DCA 2023).
Even under the Small Claims Rules, a demand in the pleadings for “costs of court” is not equivalent to a demand for attorney’s fees and does not meet the requirements of Stockman v. Downs, 573 So. 2d 835, 837-38 (Fla. 1991).

Gay v. Jupiter Island Compound, LLC, Case Nos. 4D22-1007 and 4D22-1030 (Fla. 4th DCA 2023).
Unless the public official acted maliciously or in bad faith as prohibited by Florida Statute section 768.28(9)(a), a public official enjoys immunity from suits for tortious interference.

U.S. Bank National Association v. Bell, Case No. 5D21-2528 (Fla. 5th DCA 2023).
A mortgage pooling agreement has independent legal significance and thus is not subject to a hearsay objection.

January 21, 2023

In Re: Amendments To Florida Rules Of Civil Procedure 1.070 and 1.650, Case No. SC22-1715 (Fla. 2023).
The Florida Rules of Civil Procedure regarding notice are amended.

Gonzalez v. Nobregas, Case No. 3D21-1826 (Fla. 3d DCA 2023).
The Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA), section 501.204, et. seq contains a discretionary attorney’s fees provision to a prevailing party, and a trial court that granted summary judgment to a plaintiff who did not receive an award of damages from the jury did not abuse his discretion in declining to award fees.


January 14, 2023

Royal Palm Village Residents, Inc. v. Slider, Case No. 21-13789 (11th Cir. 2023).
Florida Statute § 723.068 (prevailing parties in litigation over the Mobile Home Act are entitled to attorney’s fees) does not apply to a voluntarily dismissed amended complaint which alleged violations of the Act but did not include claims for violations of, requests for relief under, or seek to enforce compliance with the Act.

Landcastle Acquisition Corp. v. Renasant Bank, Case No. 20-13735 (11th Cir. 2023).
The D’Oench, Duhme [& Co. v. Fed. Deposit Ins. Corp., 315 U.S. 447, 62 S. Ct. 676 (1942); 12 U.S.C. § 1823(e)] Doctrine, a form of estoppel, applies when the FDIC takes over a failed bank and sells it to a solvent bank and holds that evidence outside the failed bank’s records cannot be used to establish liability against the failed bank or the FDIC.

Davis v. Verandah at Lake Grady Homeowners Association, Inc., Case No. 2D21-1387 (Fla. 2d DCA 2023).
The merger doctrine does not eliminate later recorded restrictive covenants when the purchasers of the vacant lot acknowledged at closing that the property would later be subject to restrictive covenants and the purchasers had knowledge of the contents of the restrictive covenants.

Lake Lincoln, LLC v. Manatee County, Case No. D21-2826 (Fla. 2d DCA 2023).
A parcel within a DRI is not necessarily “contiguous” to the entire DRI for purposes of the Jirik Test found in Department of Transportation, Division of Administration v. Jirik (Jirik II), 498 So. 2d 1253 (Fla. 1986) (physical contiguity, unity of ownership, and unity of use are examined to determine whether a landowner’s “parcels are separate and independent or a single tract” for purposes of determining a compensable taking).

Chakra 5, Inc. v. The City of Miami Beach, Case No. 3D21-1084 (Fla. 3d DCA 2023).
Plaintiffs suing a municipality under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 must establish: “(1) a deprivation of a constitutionally-protected liberty or property interest; (2) state action; and (3) constitutionally-inadequate process that was an express policy of the local government body” and such a “widespread practice that, although not authorized by written law or express municipal policy, is so permanent and well settled as to constitute a custom and usage with the force of law” or the actions of an official with final policymaking authority.

Kocik v. Fernandez, Case No. 3D21-1646 (Fla. 3d DCA 2023).
Florida’s Real Party in Interest Rule grants an agent standing to enforce a buyout clause in a shareholder agreement.

January 7, 2023

Braun v. America-CV v. Station Group, Inc. (In re: America-CV Station Group, Inc.), Case No. 21-13774 (11th Cir. 2023).
Claimants and interest holders are entitled to a new disclosure statement and another opportunity to vote when there is a modification to a Chapter 11 reorganization plan which materially and adversely affects the claim or interest holders.

Coates v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, Case No. SC21-175 (Fla, 2023).
Florida Statute § 768.73 limits punitive damage awards to no more than three times the compensatory damage award for “any civil action based on negligence, strict liability, products liability, misconduct in commercial transactions, professional liability, or breach of warranty, and involving willful, wanton, or gross misconduct …”

7 at Blue Lagoon (1), LLC v. Blue Lagoon Condominium Association, Inc., Case Nos. 3D21-1706 and 3D21-1731 (Fla. 3d DCA 2023).
A disputed term must be read in context of the whole text, not just the disputed term, and accordingly, a prohibition against interfering with rights of access under an easement is not violated merely by increasing traffic on the easement.

Guttenberg v. Smith & Wesson Corp., Case No. 4D21-2268 (Fla. 4th DCA 2023).
In order to not be considered merely a request for legal advice, a suit for declaratory action regarding a statute must demonstrate a present violation of the statute and/or penalties arising from same, or under the Ripening Seeds of a Controversy Doctrine, a showing of real threat of immediate injury.

Disorbo v. American Van Lines, Inc., Case No. 4D21-2994 (Fla. 4th DCA 2023).
The Florida Constitution requires cases with both legal and equitable counts and a demand for jury trial that the common issues of fact between the legal and equitable claims be tried to the jury.

Mane FL Corp. v. Beckman, Case No. 4D21-3424 (Fla. 4th DCA 2023).
Undisputed evidence of seven badges of fraud will support a summary judgment of a fraudulent conveyance under Florida Statute § 726.105.

Lennar Homes, LLC v. Wilkinsky, Case No. 4D22-1239 (Fla. 4th DCA 2023).
Personal injury claims against a developer must be arbitrated when the arbitration provision in the sales contract signed by plaintiff expressly and unambiguously extends to personal injuries suffered by plaintiff within the residential community where the home he purchased was located.


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