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Commercial Litigation

Ayala Defeats Defendant’s Sanctions Motion for the Third Time

By July 26, 2023No Comments

Ayala is happy to announce that it has once again defeated a motion for sanctions filed by a large, Florida real estate corporation against not only our clients but also our attorneys. Under the statute on which the Defendant based the motion (Section 57.105), our attorneys would have also been responsible for part of the Defendant’s attorney fees.

The Case’s Background

This case dates back to 2018 and involves a shopping mall’s landlord filing for eviction against our client, a pizzeria restaurant. Our client proceeded to countersue for damages based on the landlord managing the mall negligently. The Defendant filed multiple motions for sanctions throughout the case. In one of them, the Defendant alleges that the case was frivolous, because the entity tenant, the entity it evicted, did not have standing (entitlement) to countersue for damages.

Initial Rulings and Appeals

Originally, the motion for sanctions went to the case’s general magistrate, who ruled that there were facts supporting a good faith belief in the idea of ‘standing.’ The Defendant challenged the magistrate’s ruling to the case’s main Judge, who similarly denied the request for sanctions against our client and lawyers. The Defendant then appealed the Judge’s ruling to the Third District Court of Appeals (Third DCA). This led to the Third DCA ruling that the Judge involved in the case failed to fully address the motion for sanctions’ merit, and remanded it for her to do so.

The Final Decision on Remand

On remand, the Judge held once again, this time fully detailing its findings, providing several bases to support the idea of the tenant’s standing to countersue. Among them, rent payments, the defendant acknowledging that the tenant was in possession as part of its eviction case, the tenant’s accountant’s testimony, and the tangible, personal property tax receipts issued for the unit in question.

As attorney Eduardo A. Maura stated, “We’re happy with the Judge’s order. Hopefully, this Defendant will finally let go of a case that ended approximately 3 years ago. While the Defendant was able to derail the case on a technicality, the idea that the case was frivolous is frivolous in and of itself.”

Contact Us

For more information on motions for sanctions under Florida Statutes 57.105, or attorney fee disputes, contact one of our experienced commercial attorneys at 305-570-2208. You can also email our lead attorney Eduardo directly at

We at Ayala Law PA are passionate about helping those in legal need, so please don’t hesitate to schedule a case evaluation with us online here.

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