Florida’s new law protects property owners from the ‘squatters scam’

2RT7P6N New York, United States. 11th Sep, 2023. Ron DeSantis, Governor of Florida and Republican candidate for president, attends the 911 Commemoration Ceremony at the National September 11th Memorial and Museum in New York City on Monday, September 11, 2023. Photo by Peter Foley/UPI Credit: UPI/Alamy Live News

Photo: Alamy

Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., signed legislation to protect the property rights of Floridians—giving homeowners the ability to “quickly and legally” remove squatters from their property.

“We are putting an end to the squatters scam in Florida,” Gov. DeSantis said during Wednesday’s signing of HB 261.

He continued, “While other states are signing with squatters, we are protecting property owners and punishing criminals looking to game the system.”

Previously, removing squatters from residences was a long, costly, and litigious process, which drew ire from homeowners who had to continue paying for their property while potentially waiting years for an eviction of their illegal tenant.

Under Florida’s new law, however, homeowners can now request that law enforcement immediately remove unauthorized persons who refuse to leave the residence.

The law also creates harsher penalties for squatters and those who encourage and teach others to engage in the scam, making it a first- and second-degree felony.

Penalties can now be levied against those who make false statements in writing to obtain property, illegally trespass in residential homes and cause damage, and rent or sell property without legal ownership.

Squatting has become an issue for homeowners nationwide, particularly in places like California and New York. Squatters were considered tenants with “squatters rights,” which then required the actual property owners to launch lengthy, years-long legal battles to remove trespassers.

“They’re siding with the squatters,” DeSantis said of the blue states. “In fact, we have seen squatters move in and claim residence. This forces a massive, long, drawn-out judicial review before they can even be removed from the property.”

DeSantis then cited the case of Adele Andaloro, a New York woman who was in the process of trying to sell her $1 million home she inherited from her deceased parents until it had been taken refuge by three squatters.

According to video footage posted to X by TPUSA’s Charlie Kirk, Andaloro tried to change the locks to keep the reported squatters from reentering her home if they left but was immediately arrested by police for “unlawful eviction.”

Similar to other states across the nation, Florida has also faced rising incidents of illegal squatters. Per Fox News, Florida residents had been unable to do anything to stop the invasion of trespassers into their homes up until this point because the police departments were “handcuffed.”

In these cases, squatters understand how the removal process is lengthy and filled with red tape, essentially providing them free reign to invade peoples’ homes without any consequence for years.

“You are not going to be able to commandeer somebody’s private property and expect to get away with it,” DeSantis told audiences during the bill signing in Orlando. “We are in the state of Florida ending the squatter scam once and for all.”

Florida’s new legislation will take effect on July 1.

Related posts

President Trump identifies the real threat to democracy

Trump super PAC launches ad highlighting Harris’s role in Biden’s failures

President Trump details the injury to his bullet-grazed ear