Residential Eviction (Non-Payment of Rent, Residential ONLY)

Chapter 83 of the Florida Statutes provides the law to follow in an eviction case.

The filing fee, payable to the Clerk of Court of Miami-Dade County is $185.00 (this price varies by county).   You will also likely need to hire a process server to serve documents when the time comes to file the lawsuit.

1: Three-Day Notice. 

Before filing a Complaint to evict a tenant, a landlord must serve a Three-Day Notice which states that the tenant must pay the rent or relinquish possession of the property within 3 days (excluding Saturday, Sunday, and legal holidays) after the date of delivery of notice.

Section 83.56 states: “(4) The delivery of the written notices required by subsections (1), (2), and (3) shall be by mailing or delivery of a true copy thereof or, if the tenant is absent from the premises, by leaving a copy thereof at the residence.”  Thus, the Three-Day Notice must be mailed (certified is recommended) or left on the door of the property (or in a conspicuous place).

After the expiration time on the service of the Three-Day Notice and the tenant taking no action, the landlord may file the Complaint for Eviction.

2: Summons & Complaint

Complaint: The landlord should prepare a Complaint for eviction and make sufficient copies of the Complaint for each tenant and the Clerk.  The landlord shall attach a copy of the Three-Day notice and lease, if one exists, to each copy of the Complaint.

Summons: With the Complaint you will give the Clerk an eviction Summons to issue for each tenant.  There is a fee to issue the summons that the Clerk will charge varying by county.  The Sheriff or a private process server can serve this Summons.  The Miami-Dade Sheriff’s fee is $40.00 per tenant and must be in the form of cash or money order.  Other counties’ pricing may vary. Private process servers can occasionally be cheaper than the Sheriff.

Requirements Checklist (from http://www.miamidade.gov/police/evictions.asp):

  • 3 copies: Three Day Notice (one original is enclosed with the package)
  • 1 Original and 2 copies: Complaint For Removal of Tenant (one original is enclosed with the package)
  • 1 copy to Tenant
  • 1 copy to Complainant
  • 1 copy for the Court
  • 1 Original and 2 copies: Five Day Summons (three are enclosed in the package)
  • A stamped envelope addressed to the defendant
  • $185.00 filing fee (Cash, Check, Money Order, VISA/MC)
  • $40.00 Sheriff’s Fee for each service of the Five Day Summons per address (Check, Money Order). You also have the option of hiring a certified process server. The Three Day Notice can either be delivered to the property or sent through the mail. After three days, not including the day the notice is received, the Complaint For Removal of Tenant and the Five Day Summons can be served on the tenant. If the first two attempts are unsuccessful, the documents can be posted on the residence. If the tenant does not vacate the residence or fails to respond to the summons within the prescribed time frame (five days not counting the day of service or posting, or Saturdays, Sundays, or Holidays), you will need a Default Package. It too can be obtained from the Clerk of the Courts Office and contains the following:
    • Affidavit of Non-Payment of Rent (Notarized Original Required)
    • Non-Military Affidavit (Notarized Original Required)
    • Motion For Default and Default (Original)
    • Final Judgment For Removal of Tenant (Original + 2 Copies)
    • Writ of Possession (Original + 2 Copies)
    • You must supply two stamped envelopes (one addressed to you and one addressed to the tenant
    • You must also submit a check or money order for $115.00 made payable to “Miami-Dade County Sheriff.” The check must be from a Miami-Dade County banking institution and have your name and address pre-printed on it.

3 – Court

Answer by the Tenant: The tenant has five business days (excluding holidays) after receipt of service of the Summons and Complaint to file an answer. The tenant also must put the amount of rent in dispute into the court registry.  Failure to do so will waive all tenant’s defenses against the eviction.  If this is done, then the landlord should contact the court to obtain a hearing.

Default:  If the tenant fails to answer the Complaint within 5 business days, excluding holidays, then the landlord may file a Motion for Default/Order of Default with the Clerk.  Once the Clerk stamps the Order of Default, the Clerk can proceed to obtain Final Judgment for Possession and obtain a Writ of Possession.  The landlord will also need to submit an affidavit that the tenant(s) are not in the military as this will change the times to respond  etc.

Judgment: Once judgment is entered, give the Clerk an original Final Judgment for Possession and a copy for yourself and each of the tenants.  You must also furnish the Clerk with pre-addressed stamped envelopes to the tenant(s) and one for yourself for mailing the conformed copy of the Final Judgment.

4: Regaining Possession

After entry of the final judgment, the landlord will submit to the clerk, and the Clerk will issue, a Writ of Possession to the Sheriff to remove the tenant after 24 hour notice to the tenant conspicuously posted on the property.  The Writ must be served by the Sheriff for a fee (varies by county).

 

If you need assistance as a landlord filing an eviction or a tenant defending a potential eviction, call us today.

The Law Offices of Michael D. Stewart

305-590-8909

Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal Cord Injuries: The spinal cord is the link between the brain and other parts of the body.  It carries signals back and forth from the brain that controls sensory and motor functions of the body.  A serious impact in a car accident can cause injuries to the spinal cord and the nerves inside it causing an interruption of the signals between the brain and body.

The spinal cord is surrounded by bones called vertebra.  These bones together make up the spinal column.  Generally, the higher in the spinal column the injury, the more loss of sensation and/or function.

The vertebra are named according to their location.  The eight vertebra bones in the neck are called “Cervical Vertebra.”  They are named starting  top at the C-1, C-2, C-3, etc. up to C-8.  Injuries above the C-4 level may require a ventilator for the person to breathe. C-5 injuries often result in shoulder and biceps control, but no control at the wrist or hand. C-6 injuries generally yield wrist control, but no hand function.

The twelve vertebra in the chest area called the “Thoracic Vertebra.” The first, the T-1, is the vertebra where the top rib attaches.  Injuries in this region usually result in paraplegia.

The vertebra in the lower back between the “T” vertebrae and the pelvis are called the “Lumbar Vertebra.”  The “Sacral Vertebra” run from the pelvis down to the end of the spinal column.

Injuries to the L-1 to L-5 as well as S-1 to S-5 vertebrae can result in loss of function in the hips and legs.

Compression Fractures: Compression fractures are tiny cracks in the vertebrae bones as a result of the accident that can lead to the eventual collapse of the spine.  As a result, the shape and structure of the spine may be permanently changed.

Symptoms of a compression fracture may include pain and breathing difficulties as well as changes in posture.  In older persons compression fractures are attributed to old age and the signs ignored.   An estimated 2/3 of compression fractures go undiagnosed.

Disc Injuries:  One type of back injury common to car accident victims is called a herniated disc.  These discs are cushions within the spine that separate and protect the vertebrae from one another.

During a car accident, the impact can damage a disc, causing it to rupture or become deformed, and destroying its ability to cushion the vertebrae.  The damaged disc(s) can put pressure on nearby nerves causing pain and numbness in various parts of the body.

These type of injuries to spinal discs can cause a condition called sciatica; characterized by shooting pain, numbness and tingling in the legs and/or buttock. This pain can grow worse over time.

Low Speed Accidents:  Even “low impact” car accidents that occur at 10 m.p.h can lead to serious injury.  The soft tissues in the back and neck are vulnerable to injury in low speed collisions, which often result in sudden jerking motions that stretch or tear muscle and nerves.  Over 1/3 of people involved in these low impact accidents sustain soft tissue injures.  While some heal in a matter of weeks, others result in permanent pain and disability.

Often soft tissue injuries are overlooked as they appear minor or the symptoms do not set in for days or weeks after the accident.  Signs of soft tissue injury include muscle soreness or stiffness, bruising, numbness or tingling.

Compensation:  A person who has been injured in an accident can settle with the other driver’s insurance company, their own insurance company in some circumstances, or go to court to ask for compensation from the party who was responsible for the accident.   In most cases, the injured person will ask for compensatory damages, which is money damages intended to restore the injured person to the same position he or she was in before the accident occurred.  Compensatory damages are calculated to include out-of-pocket expenses such as medical expenses and lost wages, as well and non-economic damages like pain and suffering.  Typically, damages are calculated as three time the actual damages sustained (but just a rule of thumb and does not apply to every situation).

 

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact us today to see if you are entitled to compensation.

 

The Law Offices of Michael D. Stewart

305-590-8909

Florida Speedy Trial for those over 65 years of age

415.1115 Civil actions involving elderly parties; speedy trial.–In a civil action in which a person over the age of 65 is a party, such party may move the court to advance the trial on the docket. The presiding judge, after consideration of the age and health of the party, may advance the trial on the docket. The motion may be filed and served with the initial complaint or at any time thereafter.

History.–s. 1, ch. 91-251; s. 115, ch. 95-418.

Note.–Former s. 415.114.

Financial Responsibility of Doctors

458.320 Financial responsibility.–

(1) As a condition of licensing and maintaining an active license, and prior to the issuance or renewal of an active license or reactivation of an inactive license for the practice of medicine, an applicant must by one of the following methods demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board and the department financial responsibility to pay claims and costs ancillary thereto arising out of the rendering of, or the failure to render, medical care or services:

(a) Establishing and maintaining an escrow account consisting of cash or assets eligible for deposit in accordance with s. 625.52 in the per claim amounts specified in paragraph (b). The required escrow amount set forth in this paragraph may not be used for litigation costs or attorney’s fees for the defense of any medical malpractice claim.

(b) Obtaining and maintaining professional liability coverage in an amount not less than $100,000 per claim, with a minimum annual aggregate of not less than $300,000, from an authorized insurer as defined under s. 624.09, from a surplus lines insurer as defined under s. 626.914(2), from a risk retention group as defined under s. 627.942, from the Joint Underwriting Association established under s. 627.351(4), or through a plan of self-insurance as provided in s. 627.357. The required coverage amount set forth in this paragraph may not be used for litigation costs or attorney’s fees for the defense of any medical malpractice claim.

(c) Obtaining and maintaining an unexpired, irrevocable letter of credit, established pursuant to chapter 675, in an amount not less than $100,000 per claim, with a minimum aggregate availability of credit of not less than $300,000. The letter of credit must be payable to the physician as beneficiary upon presentment of a final judgment indicating liability and awarding damages to be paid by the physician or upon presentment of a settlement agreement signed by all parties to such agreement when such final judgment or settlement is a result of a claim arising out of the rendering of, or the failure to render, medical care and services. The letter of credit may not be used for litigation costs or attorney’s fees for the defense of any medical malpractice claim. The letter of credit must be nonassignable and nontransferable. Such letter of credit must be issued by any bank or savings association organized and existing under the laws of this state or any bank or savings association organized under the laws of the United States which has its principal place of business in this state or has a branch office that is authorized under the laws of this state or of the United States to receive deposits in this state.

(2) Physicians who perform surgery in an ambulatory surgical center licensed under chapter 395 and, as a continuing condition of hospital staff privileges, physicians who have staff privileges must also establish financial responsibility by one of the following methods:

(a) Establishing and maintaining an escrow account consisting of cash or assets eligible for deposit in accordance with s. 625.52 in the per claim amounts specified in paragraph (b). The required escrow amount set forth in this paragraph may not be used for litigation costs or attorney’s fees for the defense of any medical malpractice claim.

(b) Obtaining and maintaining professional liability coverage in an amount not less than $250,000 per claim, with a minimum annual aggregate of not less than $750,000 from an authorized insurer as defined under s. 624.09, from a surplus lines insurer as defined under s. 626.914(2), from a risk retention group as defined under s. 627.942, from the Joint Underwriting Association established under s. 627.351(4), through a plan of self-insurance as provided in s. 627.357, or through a plan of self-insurance which meets the conditions specified for satisfying financial responsibility in s. 766.110. The required coverage amount set forth in this paragraph may not be used for litigation costs or attorney’s fees for the defense of any medical malpractice claim.

(c) Obtaining and maintaining an unexpired irrevocable letter of credit, established pursuant to chapter 675, in an amount not less than $250,000 per claim, with a minimum aggregate availability of credit of not less than $750,000. The letter of credit must be payable to the physician as beneficiary upon presentment of a final judgment indicating liability and awarding damages to be paid by the physician or upon presentment of a settlement agreement signed by all parties to such agreement when such final judgment or settlement is a result of a claim arising out of the rendering of, or the failure to render, medical care and services. The letter of credit may not be used for litigation costs or attorney’s fees for the defense of any medical malpractice claim. The letter of credit must be nonassignable and nontransferable. The letter of credit must be issued by any bank or savings association organized and existing under the laws of this state or any bank or savings association organized under the laws of the United States which has its principal place of business in this state or has a branch office that is authorized under the laws of this state or of the United States to receive deposits in this state.

This subsection shall be inclusive of the coverage in subsection (1).

(3)(a) Meeting the financial responsibility requirements of this section or the criteria for any exemption from such requirements must be established at the time of issuance or renewal of a license.

(b) Any person may, at any time, submit to the department a request for an advisory opinion regarding such person’s qualifications for exemption.

(4)(a) Each insurer, self-insurer, risk retention group, or Joint Underwriting Association must promptly notify the department of cancellation or nonrenewal of insurance required by this section. Unless the physician demonstrates that he or she is otherwise in compliance with the requirements of this section, the department shall suspend the license of the physician pursuant to ss. 120.569 and 120.57 and notify all health care facilities licensed under chapter 395 of such action. Any suspension under this subsection remains in effect until the physician demonstrates compliance with the requirements of this section. If any judgments or settlements are pending at the time of suspension, those judgments or settlements must be paid in accordance with this section unless otherwise mutually agreed to in writing by the parties. This paragraph does not abrogate a judgment debtor’s obligation to satisfy the entire amount of any judgment.

(b) If financial responsibility requirements are met by maintaining an escrow account or letter of credit as provided in this section, upon the entry of an adverse final judgment arising from a medical malpractice arbitration award, from a claim of medical malpractice either in contract or tort, or from noncompliance with the terms of a settlement agreement arising from a claim of medical malpractice either in contract or tort, the licensee shall pay the entire amount of the judgment together with all accrued interest, or the amount maintained in the escrow account or provided in the letter of credit as required by this section, whichever is less, within 60 days after the date such judgment became final and subject to execution, unless otherwise mutually agreed to in writing by the parties. If timely payment is not made by the physician, the department shall suspend the license of the physician pursuant to procedures set forth in subparagraphs (5)(g)3., 4., and 5. Nothing in this paragraph shall abrogate a judgment debtor’s obligation to satisfy the entire amount of any judgment.

(5) The requirements of subsections (1), (2), and (3) do not apply to:

(a) Any person licensed under this chapter who practices medicine exclusively as an officer, employee, or agent of the Federal Government or of the state or its agencies or its subdivisions. For the purposes of this subsection, an agent of the state, its agencies, or its subdivisions is a person who is eligible for coverage under any self-insurance or insurance program authorized by the provisions of s. 768.28(16).

(b) Any person whose license has become inactive under this chapter and who is not practicing medicine in this state. Any person applying for reactivation of a license must show either that such licensee maintained tail insurance coverage which provided liability coverage for incidents that occurred on or after January 1, 1987, or the initial date of licensure in this state, whichever is later, and incidents that occurred before the date on which the license became inactive; or such licensee must submit an affidavit stating that such licensee has no unsatisfied medical malpractice judgments or settlements at the time of application for reactivation.

(c) Any person holding a limited license pursuant to s. 458.317 and practicing under the scope of such limited license.

(d) Any person licensed or certified under this chapter who practices only in conjunction with his or her teaching duties at an accredited medical school or in its main teaching hospitals. Such person may engage in the practice of medicine to the extent that such practice is incidental to and a necessary part of duties in connection with the teaching position in the medical school.

(e) Any person holding an active license under this chapter who is not practicing medicine in this state. If such person initiates or resumes any practice of medicine in this state, he or she must notify the department of such activity and fulfill the financial responsibility requirements of this section before resuming the practice of medicine in this state.

(f) Any person holding an active license under this chapter who meets all of the following criteria:

1. The licensee has held an active license to practice in this state or another state or some combination thereof for more than 15 years.

2. The licensee has either retired from the practice of medicine or maintains a part-time practice of no more than 1,000 patient contact hours per year.

3. The licensee has had no more than two claims for medical malpractice resulting in an indemnity exceeding $25,000 within the previous 5-year period.

4. The licensee has not been convicted of, or pled guilty or nolo contendere to, any criminal violation specified in this chapter or the medical practice act of any other state.

5. The licensee has not been subject within the last 10 years of practice to license revocation or suspension for any period of time; probation for a period of 3 years or longer; or a fine of $500 or more for a violation of this chapter or the medical practice act of another jurisdiction. The regulatory agency’s acceptance of a physician’s relinquishment of a license, stipulation, consent order, or other settlement, offered in response to or in anticipation of the filing of administrative charges against the physician’s license, constitutes action against the physician’s license for the purposes of this paragraph.

6. The licensee has submitted a form supplying necessary information as required by the department and an affidavit affirming compliance with this paragraph.

7. The licensee must submit biennially to the department certification stating compliance with the provisions of this paragraph. The licensee must, upon request, demonstrate to the department information verifying compliance with this paragraph.

A licensee who meets the requirements of this paragraph must post notice in the form of a sign prominently displayed in the reception area and clearly noticeable by all patients or provide a written statement to any person to whom medical services are being provided. The sign or statement must read as follows: “Under Florida law, physicians are generally required to carry medical malpractice insurance or otherwise demonstrate financial responsibility to cover potential claims for medical malpractice. However, certain part-time physicians who meet state requirements are exempt from the financial responsibility law. YOUR DOCTOR MEETS THESE REQUIREMENTS AND HAS DECIDED NOT TO CARRY MEDICAL MALPRACTICE INSURANCE. This notice is provided pursuant to Florida law.”

(g) Any person holding an active license under this chapter who agrees to meet all of the following criteria:

1. Upon the entry of an adverse final judgment arising from a medical malpractice arbitration award, from a claim of medical malpractice either in contract or tort, or from noncompliance with the terms of a settlement agreement arising from a claim of medical malpractice either in contract or tort, the licensee shall pay the judgment creditor the lesser of the entire amount of the judgment with all accrued interest or either $100,000, if the physician is licensed pursuant to this chapter but does not maintain hospital staff privileges, or $250,000, if the physician is licensed pursuant to this chapter and maintains hospital staff privileges, within 60 days after the date such judgment became final and subject to execution, unless otherwise mutually agreed to in writing by the parties. Such adverse final judgment shall include any cross-claim, counterclaim, or claim for indemnity or contribution arising from the claim of medical malpractice. Upon notification of the existence of an unsatisfied judgment or payment pursuant to this subparagraph, the department shall notify the licensee by certified mail that he or she shall be subject to disciplinary action unless, within 30 days from the date of mailing, he or she either:

a. Shows proof that the unsatisfied judgment has been paid in the amount specified in this subparagraph; or

b. Furnishes the department with a copy of a timely filed notice of appeal and either:

(I) A copy of a supersedeas bond properly posted in the amount required by law; or

(II) An order from a court of competent jurisdiction staying execution on the final judgment pending disposition of the appeal.

2. The Department of Health shall issue an emergency order suspending the license of any licensee who, after 30 days following receipt of a notice from the Department of Health, has failed to: satisfy a medical malpractice claim against him or her; furnish the Department of Health a copy of a timely filed notice of appeal; furnish the Department of Health a copy of a supersedeas bond properly posted in the amount required by law; or furnish the Department of Health an order from a court of competent jurisdiction staying execution on the final judgment pending disposition of the appeal.

3. Upon the next meeting of the probable cause panel of the board following 30 days after the date of mailing the notice of disciplinary action to the licensee, the panel shall make a determination of whether probable cause exists to take disciplinary action against the licensee pursuant to subparagraph 1.

4. If the board determines that the factual requirements of subparagraph 1. are met, it shall take disciplinary action as it deems appropriate against the licensee. Such disciplinary action shall include, at a minimum, probation of the license with the restriction that the licensee must make payments to the judgment creditor on a schedule determined by the board to be reasonable and within the financial capability of the physician. Notwithstanding any other disciplinary penalty imposed, the disciplinary penalty may include suspension of the license for a period not to exceed 5 years. In the event that an agreement to satisfy a judgment has been met, the board shall remove any restriction on the license.

5. The licensee has completed a form supplying necessary information as required by the department.

A licensee who meets the requirements of this paragraph shall be required either to post notice in the form of a sign prominently displayed in the reception area and clearly noticeable by all patients or to provide a written statement to any person to whom medical services are being provided. Such sign or statement shall state: “Under Florida law, physicians are generally required to carry medical malpractice insurance or otherwise demonstrate financial responsibility to cover potential claims for medical malpractice. YOUR DOCTOR HAS DECIDED NOT TO CARRY MEDICAL MALPRACTICE INSURANCE. This is permitted under Florida law subject to certain conditions. Florida law imposes penalties against noninsured physicians who fail to satisfy adverse judgments arising from claims of medical malpractice. This notice is provided pursuant to Florida law.”

(6) Any deceptive, untrue, or fraudulent representation by the licensee with respect to any provision of this section shall result in permanent disqualification from any exemption to mandated financial responsibility as provided in this section and shall constitute grounds for disciplinary action under s. 458.331.

(7) Any licensee who relies on any exemption from the financial responsibility requirement shall notify the department, in writing, of any change of circumstance regarding his or her qualifications for such exemption and shall demonstrate that he or she is in compliance with the requirements of this section.

(8) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, the department shall suspend the license of any physician against whom has been entered a final judgment, arbitration award, or other order or who has entered into a settlement agreement to pay damages arising out of a claim for medical malpractice, if all appellate remedies have been exhausted and payment up to the amounts required by this section has not been made within 30 days after the entering of such judgment, award, or order or agreement, until proof of payment is received by the department or a payment schedule has been agreed upon by the physician and the claimant and presented to the department. This subsection does not apply to a physician who has met the financial responsibility requirements in paragraphs (1)(b) and (2)(b).

(9) The board shall adopt rules to implement the provisions of this section.

History.–ss. 27, 50, ch. 85-175; ss. 47, 67, ch. 86-160; s. 26, ch. 86-245; s. 22, ch. 88-1; s. 2, ch. 90-158; s. 184, ch. 91-108; s. 59, ch. 91-220; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 106, ch. 94-218; s. 217, ch. 96-410; s. 1089, ch. 97-103; s. 144, ch. 97-237; s. 104, ch. 97-261; s. 22, ch. 97-264; s. 20, ch. 97-273; s. 9, ch. 98-166; s. 116, ch. 2000-153; s. 20, ch. 2001-277; s. 23, ch. 2003-416; s. 75, ch. 2004-5.

Florida Punitive Damages

768.73 Punitive damages; limitation.–

(1)(a) Except as provided in paragraphs (b) and (c), an award of punitive damages may not exceed the greater of:

1. Three times the amount of compensatory damages awarded to each claimant entitled thereto, consistent with the remaining provisions of this section; or

2. The sum of $500,000.

(b) Where the fact finder determines that the wrongful conduct proven under this section was motivated solely by unreasonable financial gain and determines that the unreasonably dangerous nature of the conduct, together with the high likelihood of injury resulting from the conduct, was actually known by the managing agent, director, officer, or other person responsible for making policy decisions on behalf of the defendant, it may award an amount of punitive damages not to exceed the greater of:

1. Four times the amount of compensatory damages awarded to each claimant entitled thereto, consistent with the remaining provisions of this section; or

2. The sum of $2 million.

(c) Where the fact finder determines that at the time of injury the defendant had a specific intent to harm the claimant and determines that the defendant’s conduct did in fact harm the claimant, there shall be no cap on punitive damages.

(d) This subsection is not intended to prohibit an appropriate court from exercising its jurisdiction under s. 768.74 in determining the reasonableness of an award of punitive damages that is less than three times the amount of compensatory damages.

(2)(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), punitive damages may not be awarded against a defendant in a civil action if that defendant establishes, before trial, that punitive damages have previously been awarded against that defendant in any state or federal court in any action alleging harm from the same act or single course of conduct for which the claimant seeks compensatory damages. For purposes of a civil action, the term “the same act or single course of conduct” includes acts resulting in the same manufacturing defects, acts resulting in the same defects in design, or failure to warn of the same hazards, with respect to similar units of a product.

(b) In subsequent civil actions involving the same act or single course of conduct for which punitive damages have already been awarded, if the court determines by clear and convincing evidence that the amount of prior punitive damages awarded was insufficient to punish that defendant’s behavior, the court may permit a jury to consider an award of subsequent punitive damages. In permitting a jury to consider awarding subsequent punitive damages, the court shall make specific findings of fact in the record to support its conclusion. In addition, the court may consider whether the defendant’s act or course of conduct has ceased. Any subsequent punitive damage awards must be reduced by the amount of any earlier punitive damage awards rendered in state or federal court.

(3) The claimant attorney’s fees, if payable from the judgment, are, to the extent that the fees are based on the punitive damages, calculated based on the final judgment for punitive damages. This subsection does not limit the payment of attorney’s fees based upon an award of damages other than punitive damages.

(4) The jury may neither be instructed nor informed as to the provisions of this section.

(5) The provisions of this section shall be applied to all causes of action arising after the effective date of this act.

History.–ss. 52, 65, ch. 86-160; s. 1, ch. 87-42; s. 5, ch. 87-50; s. 1, ch. 88-335; s. 71, ch. 91-282; ss. 2, 3, ch. 92-85; s. 16, ch. 97-94; s. 23, ch. 99-225.