Florida Statute 2.01 provides that the English Law of Florida still has force and effect:
We Floridians have a serious problem with the above statute:
The Florida Legislature has failed to elucidate the English Law of Florida to the people.If you know the content of the English Law of Florida or where I can find it to read it, please tell me. In other words, what and where is the English Law of Florida?
Allow me to give you a pertinent issue with and question about Florida's English Law: adverse possession (see Florida Statutes 95.12 et seq, particularly 95.16 and 95.18, see below).
Sheriffs and prosecutors in a variety of Florida counties have harassed, arrested, and prosecuted people for adverse possession. No law makes adverse possession a crime. So the sheriffs arrest adverse possessors for trespass, breaking and entering, criminal mischief, burglary, grand theft, swindle, fraud, scheme to defraud, and even brokering without a license. That, to me, seem equivalent to arresting an African American for "driving while black."
Florida Statute Chapter 95 clearly acknowledges the right to take adverse possession of realty. Numerous law review articles, including the Harvard Law Review, Volume XXXII of November 1918, page 135, Title by Adverse Possession, point out that we inherited adverse possession as a right from English Law as far back 500 to 600 years. Florida law merely describes a means of exercising adverse possession, but gives no historical detail about the fact that it constitutes a civil right AND that it puts possession of the realty squarely into a civil, and not a criminal, jurisdiction.
Because we do not have or know the English law of Florida, and its provisions regarding adverse possession, we cannot use the courts to protect us from outrageous arrests by sheriffs who thereby violate our adverse possession rights.
Right now the Florida Legislature has house and senate bills intended to suppress adverse possessors by making it a felony to falsify the notice of adverse possession, and increase cost to government by requiring the property appraiser to notify the owner of record of the adverse possession.
Take note that the Legislature aims this effort to sanctify official government oppression of adverse possessors directly at those who adversely possess realty abandoned because of foreclosure. Property appraisers inform sheriffs of the adverse possession when the adverse possessor files the required notice. The sheriff contacts the owner of record and stirs the owner up by saying the owner will stand responsible for damage the adverse possessor does to the realty. The owner then asks the sheriff to remove the adverse possessor for trespass. The sheriff does so EVEN after a month or more of adverse possessor occupancy.
I have a big problem with such government interference into the lives of people, both owners and adverse possessors alike. The constitutions do not empower government to violate ARticle I Section 23 of the Florida Constitution for such reasons. That section provides:
In virtually every case of such adverse possession, the owner has fled from the realty and the responsibility to the community and mortgagee to maintain the realty in good condition. Such flight violates paragraph 7 of the standard Fannie Mae/ Freddie Mac Form 3010 mortgage security instrument:
7. Preservation, Maintenance and Protection of the Property; Inspections. Borrower shall not destroy, damage or impair the Property, allow the Property to deteriorate or commit waste on the Property. Whether or not Borrower is residing in the Property, Borrower shall maintain the Property in order to prevent the Property from deteriorating or decreasing in value due to its condition. Unless it is determined pursuant to Section 5 that repair or restoration is not economically feasible, Borrower shall promptly repair the Property if damaged to avoid further deterioration or damage. If insurance or condemnation proceeds are paid in connection with damage to, or the taking of, the Property, Borrower shall be responsible for repairing or restoring the Property only if Lender has released proceeds for such purposes. Lender may disburse proceeds for the repairs and restoration in a single payment or in a series of progress payments as the work is completed. If the insurance or condemnation proceeds are not sufficient to repair or restore the Property, Borrower is not relieved of Borrower’s obligation for the completion of such repair or restoration.Lender or its agent may make reasonable entries upon and inspections of the Property. If it has reasonable cause, Lender may inspect the interior of the improvements on the Property. Lender shall give Borrower notice at the time of or prior to such an interior inspection specifying such reasonable cause.
Moreover, it puts the realty, community, and future occupants in danger that mold, termites, pests, acts of nature, vandals, thieves, and drug dealers will infest the realty and diminish the value of it and the neighborhood.
Thus, adverse possessors of such realty do the owner, the mortgagee, the community, the house, and future occupants a big favor. Sheriffs repay them by arresting them on trumped up, bogus charges, and they nearly universally falsify probable cause affidavits used to obtain inapplicable arrest warrants.
The notice of adverse possession distinguishes an adverse possessor from a squatter, ESPECIALLY in the case of abandoned realty.
It signifies to the property appraiser (and thus to the sheriff) that the adverse possessor intends to stay in possessory dominion over the realty for the statutory period.
It constitutes the realty equivalent of dumpster diving for cast-off chattel.
Please don't take this point lightly. Cast-off, abandoned realty signifies an intention forever to quit the realty and never to return to it as an owner and never to exercise possessory dominion over it again. This equivalates to throwing an expensive car or mink coat in the dumpster. THAT ACT puts the realty up for grabs just as does casting chattel into the dumpster. Whoever comes and retrieves it and cares for it has a right to it. THAT much, the adverse possession law makes clear.
Taking adverse possession of abandoned realty operates similarly to claiming that car or mink coat from the dumpster. In effect the owner has said "I don't want it, so you take it if you want it." Filing notice of adverse possession constitutes the staking of claim to the realty, and it constitutes the establishment of a real property right interest.
Unfortunately, our laws do not make it clear that an adverse possessor has the right to intervene in a foreclosure process under Florida rule of civil procedure 1.230. Nor does it clarify that if he prevails in the foreclosure defense he has the right of title to the realty the rightful owner abandoned. The rule provides:
1.230 Interventions. Anyone claiming an interest in pending litigation may at any time be permitted to assert a right by intervention, but the intervention shall be in subordination to, and in recognition of, the propriety of the main proceeding, unless otherwise ordered by the court in its discretionFlorida statutes do not provide equity relief for an adverse possessor who maintains abandoned realty of which the owner retakes possession after some months or years. The law should require the owner to compensate the adverse possessor for all maintenance, improvement, taxes, home owner association dues, and the like.
Perhaps Florida's English Law addresses the above sticky issues. If it does, how shall the people of Florida ever know?
The Florida Legislature, in failing to publish the English Law of Florida electronically and in book form, has constructively destroyed access of Florida's people to the law and its protections, making both unknowable.
I ask that you use your influence to get such a published version in circulation.
Whether or not you do that, I ask that you tell me what constitutes the English Law of Florida and where I might find it.
|Bob Hurt My Blog |
2460 Persian Drive #70
Clearwater, FL 33763
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2.01 Common law and certain statutes declared in force.—The common and statute laws of England which are of a general and not a local nature, with the exception hereinafter mentioned, down to the 4th day of July, 1776, are declared to be of force in this state; provided, the said statutes and common law be not inconsistent with the Constitution and laws of the United States and the acts of the Legislature of this state.