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Can I Sue an Airbnb Host in Florida?

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Airbnb host in Florida

Yes, as a guest you can sue an Airbnb host in Florida if you suffer injuries or other damages caused by the host’s negligence or illegal actions.

Florida law gives Airbnb users many of the same rights and protections that hotel guests and property renters have.

If your Airbnb host failed to provide a safe living space, violated your privacy, or lied in the rental property listing, you may be entitled to financial compensation.

Read on for a legal guide to filing a lawsuit against an Airbnb host. We will walk you through the legal requirements and steps for pursuing a claim.

If you were injured or harmed while renting an Airbnb, call today for free legal advice from an experienced Airbnb lawyer in Tampa, Florida.

Table of Contents

Your Rights as an Airbnb Guest

As an Airbnb guest in Florida, you have certain rights, including:

  • The right to a safe and habitable rental property
  • The right to privacy
  • The right to not be discriminated against
  • The right to receive what was promised in the listing

If these rights are violated, you may have grounds to take legal action against the owner or manager of the Airbnb.

Airbnb’s Terms of Service agreement attempt to limit the company’s liability and require users to resolve conflicts through arbitration rather than lawsuits against the platform. However, Airbnb users still have the right to sue the host directly in most cases.

Consult with a lawyer to determine if the Airbnb terms of service will limit your ability to pursue compensation or prevent you from suing the host of the property you rented.

Examples of Reasons to Sue an Airbnb Host

Here are some of the situations where you may be eligible to sue an Airbnb host in Florida:

  • Unsafe property conditions leading to injury – Broken stairs, exposed wiring, etc.
  • Failure to disclose health hazards – Unsanitary conditions, mold, or exposure to toxic chemicals, for example.
  • Invasion of privacy – Such as recording with hidden cameras or entering the property unannounced.
  • Wrongful eviction – Forcing you to vacate the property before your reservation is over.
  • Bug infestations – Airbnb owners are not allowed to rent out properties infested with bedbugs, fleas, or other pests.
  • Fraud or misrepresentation – If the photos or description of the property in the Airbnb listing were misleading.
  • Failure to provide expected amenities – If the host didn’t disclose that there was no functional bathroom, for example.
  • Theft of your belongings – If your property was stolen by the host or if it was unprotected because of broken locks or other security issues.
  • Illegal rentals in violation of local zoning or HOA rules
  • Discrimination – It is illegal for Airbnb owners to discriminate against renters based on race, religion, gender, disability, age, or other protected characteristics.

There are many other situations where you may be eligible to sue your Airbnb host. Contact us for a free case evaluation. Our lawyers will determine if you have a case against Airbnb or the host of the property you rented.

How Do I Sue an Airbnb Host?

To sue an Airbnb host in Florida, you’ll need to:

  1. Consult with an attorney
  2. Document evidence
  3. Submit a complaint to Airbnb
  4. File a lawsuit in civil court
  5. Proceed with the litigation process

Step 1: Consult with an attorney

Start by contacting an attorney with experience in premises liability, tenant rights, and consumer protection laws. Your attorney will review your case, advise you on the strength of your claim, and guide you through the legal process. Having a lawyer represent you from the beginning will help avoid common pitfalls that can hurt your ability to seek compensation.

Step 2: Document evidence

Collect the evidence you will need to support your lawsuit, including:

  • Photos and videos of the rental property
  • Screenshots of the Airbnb listing in the app
  • Receipts showing the dates you reserved and the price you paid
  • Medical bills and photos of your injuries
  • Photos of the damage to your property
  • Hotel bills if you had to find other accommodations
  • Photos of hidden cameras you found on the property
  • Any other records related to your complaint

Step 3: Submit a Complaint to Airbnb

Airbnb’s terms of service typically require guests to go through their internal dispute resolution process before pursuing legal action. This may involve filing a formal complaint with Airbnb and allowing them to attempt to resolve the issue.

Step 4: File a Lawsuit in Civil Court

If you decide to proceed with legal action, your attorney will file a civil lawsuit against the Airbnb host in the appropriate Florida county court or circuit court, depending on the amount of damages you are seeking.

Step 5: Proceed with the Litigation Process

This will involve settlement negotiations, and eventually going to trial if the parties don’t agree on a settlement. Litigating a case against the owner of an Airbnb may take years, but it may be the only way to seek justice and get fair compensation.

How to Prove Liability in an Airbnb Lawsuit

To prove an Airbnb host was liable for the damages you incurred, you will need to prove:

  • The host owed you a duty of care
  • The host breached that duty
  • You suffered injuries or damages
  • The host’s breach was the cause of your damages.

The specific evidence needed to prove these legal elements will vary depending on your specific claim (such as negligence, breach of contract, violation of Florida’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act, etc.)

Statutes of Limitations for Airbnb Lawsuits

The statute of limitations set deadlines for filing a lawsuit. In Florida, the statute of limitations on Airbnb lawsuits depends on the type of claim:

The statute of limitations set deadlines for filing a lawsuit. In Florida, the statute of limitations on Airbnb lawsuits depends on the type of claim:
  • Negligence: 2 years
  • Breach of oral contract: 4 years
  • Breach of written contract: 5 years
  • Injury to property: 4 years
These statutes of limitations are established in Chapter 95.11 of the Florida Statutes If you’ve been wronged by the host of an Airbnb you stayed at in Florida, call (813) 471-4444 today to discuss your case with an Airbnb lawyer for free legal advice. References