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The Florida Statutes

The 2014 Florida Statutes

Title XXXIII
REGULATION OF TRADE, COMMERCE, INVESTMENTS, AND SOLICITATIONS
Chapter 558
CONSTRUCTION DEFECTS
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F.S. 558.005
558.005 Contract provisions; application.
(1) Unless a claimant and a potential defendant have agreed in writing to opt out of the requirements of this section, the provisions of this chapter shall apply to any claim for legal relief for which the agreement to make the improvement was made after October 1, 2009, and for which the basis of the claim is a construction defect that has arisen after completion of a building or improvement.
(2) For a claim of a construction defect pursuant to contracts for improvement entered into as described in this subsection, the following applicable notices are required:
(a) Between July 1, 2004, and September 30, 2006, which contract contains the notice as set forth in paragraph (3)(a) and is conspicuously set forth in capitalized letters.
(b) Between October 1, 2006, and September 30, 2009, which contract contains the notice set forth in paragraph (3)(b) and is conspicuously set forth in capitalized letters.
(3)(a) The notice required by paragraph (2)(a) must be in substantially the following form:

CHAPTER 558 NOTICE OF CLAIM

CHAPTER 558, FLORIDA STATUTES, CONTAINS IMPORTANT REQUIREMENTS YOU MUST FOLLOW BEFORE YOU MAY BRING ANY LEGAL ACTION FOR AN ALLEGED CONSTRUCTION DEFECT IN YOUR HOME. SIXTY DAYS BEFORE YOU BRING ANY LEGAL ACTION, YOU MUST DELIVER TO THE OTHER PARTY TO THIS CONTRACT A WRITTEN NOTICE, REFERRING TO CHAPTER 558, OF ANY CONSTRUCTION CONDITIONS YOU ALLEGE ARE DEFECTIVE AND PROVIDE SUCH PERSON THE OPPORTUNITY TO INSPECT THE ALLEGED CONSTRUCTION DEFECTS AND TO CONSIDER MAKING AN OFFER TO REPAIR OR PAY FOR THE ALLEGED CONSTRUCTION DEFECTS. YOU ARE NOT OBLIGATED TO ACCEPT ANY OFFER WHICH MAY BE MADE. THERE ARE STRICT DEADLINES AND PROCEDURES UNDER THIS FLORIDA LAW WHICH MUST BE MET AND FOLLOWED TO PROTECT YOUR INTERESTS.

(b) The notice required by paragraph (2)(b) must expressly cite this chapter and be in substantially the following form:

CHAPTER 558 NOTICE OF CLAIM

CHAPTER 558, FLORIDA STATUTES, CONTAINS IMPORTANT REQUIREMENTS YOU MUST FOLLOW BEFORE YOU MAY BRING ANY LEGAL ACTION FOR AN ALLEGED CONSTRUCTION DEFECT. SIXTY DAYS BEFORE YOU BRING ANY LEGAL ACTION, YOU MUST DELIVER TO THE OTHER PARTY TO THIS CONTRACT A WRITTEN NOTICE, REFERRING TO CHAPTER 558, OF ANY CONSTRUCTION CONDITIONS YOU ALLEGE ARE DEFECTIVE AND PROVIDE SUCH PERSON THE OPPORTUNITY TO INSPECT THE ALLEGED CONSTRUCTION DEFECTS AND TO CONSIDER MAKING AN OFFER TO REPAIR OR PAY FOR THE ALLEGED CONSTRUCTION DEFECTS. YOU ARE NOT OBLIGATED TO ACCEPT ANY OFFER WHICH MAY BE MADE. THERE ARE STRICT DEADLINES AND PROCEDURES UNDER THIS FLORIDA LAW WHICH MUST BE MET AND FOLLOWED TO PROTECT YOUR INTERESTS.

(4) At any time, a claimant and the person to whom notice is served or otherwise must be served under s. 558.004(1) may agree in writing to preaction mediation or otherwise alter the procedure for the notice of claim process described in this chapter.
(5) Notwithstanding the notice requirements of this section for contracts entered into on or after October 1, 2006, this chapter applies to all actions accruing before July 1, 2004, but not yet commenced as of July 1, 2004, and failure to include such notice requirements in a contract entered into before July 1, 2004, does not operate to bar the procedures of this chapter from applying to all such actions.
(6) Notwithstanding s. 558.003, unless the parties agree that this chapter does not apply, after October 1, 2009, any written contract for improvement of real property entered into between an owner and a contractor, or between an owner and a design professional, must contain substantially the following notice: “ANY CLAIMS FOR CONSTRUCTION DEFECTS ARE SUBJECT TO THE NOTICE AND CURE PROVISIONS OF CHAPTER 558, FLORIDA STATUTES.” The failure to include in the contract the notice provided in this subsection does not subject the contracting owner, contractor, or design professional to any penalty. The purpose of the contractual notice is to promote awareness of the procedure, not to be a penalty.
History.s. 5, ch. 2003-49; s. 5, ch. 2004-342; s. 4, ch. 2006-281; s. 4, ch. 2009-203.