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Flashcards in FL Constitutional Law Deck (26)
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Homestead: Rule & elements 

Rule: Homestead status protects a florida resident's primary residence from being forcefully sold by creditors

Elements to obtain protection:

  1. Natural Person (not a corp.)
  2. Primary Residence (license address, where you get your bills)
  3. Filed with the county clerk's office before creditor files claim
  4. Satisfying contiguous acerage limit (1/2 in, 160 out)



Homestead: Creditors & Exceptions

Creditor protection: creditors can file a judgment but they can't take the house 

Exceptions: Super creditors

  1. Mortgage holders
  2. Property taxes
  3. Mechanics liens - any work done on the property itself


Homestead: Abandonment of Homestead

Leave the property with the express intent to not return

consequence: lose homestead protection


Homestead: Division and subsequent property interest

The homestead is not divisible if there is a surviving spouse and minor child.

Surviving spouse gets a life estate, remainder to child.


Homestead: Ad valorem Tax

Advalorem Tax: property taxes and taxes on tangible personal property 

  • only pay tax to local county government



Homestead: Milage rate

Milage rate: uniform tax rate across all homes within the county


Homestead: Homestead Exemption


Homestead Exemption: allows homesteader to take up to (2) $25,000 ($50,000) off property value of the homestead for tax assessment. 


Homestead: Portability

Protability:  when an old homestead is sold and new home is bought, after filing for new homestead protection, the old homestead property tax exemption carry's over to new homestead


Government Owned Land and taxes

Governement owned land is exempt from taxes.

However, if a business uses government land to make a profit, (gift shop)that land will then be taxed.  


Constitutionality: Regular Session and Special Session

Regular Session: State Congress convenes for 60 days

Special Session - governor calls a special session to address a single issue.

  • Laws can only be passed in the purview of the special section proclamation


Constitutionality: How a Bill becomes a law

in order for a bill to become a law in florida it has to pass each house of the state legislature by a majority vote. The govenor can either sign it within 7 days or veto it. If not vetod by the govenor within 7 days of it passing, the bill will automatically become a law. 


Consitutionality: State power  

Under the police power, a state can pass a law for the health, safety, and wellfare of its citizens as long as it does not conflict with federal law


Constitutionality: Bill Formalities 

A bill must contain:

  1. A Title
  2. an enactment clause which says "be it enacted that"
  3. a valid purpose (reasonably related to public welfare)
  4. single subject rule (only one subject)
  5. not vague (clearly worded so that an average person can read it)



Constitutionality: Separation of Powers

florida's constitution specifically incorporate separations of power into the constitution

ask: is legislature trying to take away powers from other branches? is it quasi-judicial/quasi-judicial



Constitutionality: Types of Laws

General- applies to the entire state uniformally

Specific- a group of people or geographic location. 


  • notice published in a newspaper of general circulation in the affected area, or
  • a referendum approved by a majority of the voters in the affected area.

General Law of Local Application- applies to a specific population 

  • the subject matter of the law must be reasonably related to the population classification.


Constitutionality: County Passing laws


Chartered: has broad power to make any law as long as it's not in conflict with state law

Non-chartered: must have the state specifically give power


Constitutionality: Standing

person must have a destinct injury,

there must be causation,

injury is redressible by court order


Constitutionality: Equal Protection 

A group of people are being treated differently from another group of people.

Strict Scrutinty Classes: Race Religion Nationality Physical Disability 

Strict Scrutinty: goverment has the burden to show that the legislation is necessary to achive a compelling governemnt interest

everything else RB


Due Process

No person shall be denied life, liberty, or property without due process of law.



Substantive Due Process

the govt.’s power to regulate certain activities.

Fundamental Rights Test – When regulating fundamental rights, it must satisfy strict scrutiny → Govt. must show the law is necessary to serve a compelling governmental interest.

− Fundamental Rights = right to vote, interstate travel, and privacy  (Contriceptive Abortion Marriage Parentage Education  Raise a family)

Privacy - fundamental right to be left alone

Right to work

Everything else is RB 



Procedural Due Process

due process based on the government taking away: 

  • government employment
  • benefits
  • state licensure 

requires notice and a hearing 


Freedom of Speech

Content based: Narrowly tailored to achieve a compelling government Interest

Content Neutral: can regulate the time place and manner of the speech if it there is a signifigant goverment interest and alternative channels of communication are avalible 


Establishment Clause

each person has the fundamental right to practice their religion in anyway.

Lemon test:

  1. secular purpose
  2. does not advance or inhibit religion
  3. no excessive goverment entanglement ($)


Access to courts

Florida makes it prohibitory to deny a person from having the accessibility to have their day in court


Right to jury trial

no florida statute can deny a person's right to a jury trial


sunshine laws

goverment can't act if it deprives public from access to their information