Tallahassee, Fla. – The Florida House of Representatives approved a measure today designed to maintain current law on implied warranty. House Bill 1013, sponsored by Representative Frank Artiles (R-Miami) addresses the decision made by the 5th District Court of Appeal that would expand the application of implied warranty for the first time in forty years. The District Court of Appeal’s decision is currently pending review by the Florida Supreme Court.
“This judicial decision would be the first in the country to expand the doctrine of implied warranty to offsite improvements,” stated Rep. Artiles. “At a time when our real estate market is fragile, my bill stops judicial activism from creating a new cause of action that will only cost homeowners money and make Florida less attractive for growth.”
The Florida Supreme Court adopted the common law doctrine of implied warranty in 1972 as a way to protect the first purchaser of a home at a time when very few regulations existed. Under current law to bring cause under implied warranty, a home must have serious defects or damages caused by the builder that affects the home’s habitability. The 5th DCA’s decision goes beyond consumer protection and would unnecessarily and inappropriately expand the scope of implied warranty to include off-site improvements such as roads and sidewalks. Homeowners already have existing remedies available to resolve defects to off-site improvements.
“This legislation affirming existing law is good for Florida consumers,” continued Rep. Artiles. “It preserves property values, protects homeowners from higher prices, ensures that we attract new job-creators to our state, and solidifies forty years of case law. I am grateful for the Florida House’s overwhelming support for this bill.”
House Bill 1013 passed the on the House floor today at a vote of 106 to 10. The bill will now be sent to the Senate for a vote.