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Legalinfomd, Attorney
Category: Business Law
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Experience:  Attorney with 24 years of experience in business law.
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Re Florida Small Claims court Rules -- my FL company has a

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Re Florida Small Claims court Rules -- my FL company has a breach of contract dispute with an out-of-state company. We are considering bringing suit against the company in FL SC court (we are aware the max. limit is $5,000). The company is based Calif. and this particular contract says CA law is governing law. However, we deem the contract to be signed in FL, and further, the contract paved the way for the CA company to conduct business with all of our Florida buyers, to market to them, and to transact business with them online -- i.e. in FL. Business by the CA company included their market research surveys conducted with our buyers in FL and nationwide. What would be the legal requirements, (or the FL/CA statues) to enable jurisdiction for bringing suit against them in Florida SC court?

Legalinfomd : Hello. I will respond to your question. The pertinent Florida statute governing jurisdiction in your instance is: West's Florida Statutes AnnotatedTitle VI. Civil Practice and Procedure (Chapters 45-89) (Refs & Annos)Chapter 48. Process and Service of Process (Refs & Annos)Proposed LegislationEffective: July 1, 2013West's F.S.A. § 48.19348.193. Acts subjecting person to jurisdiction of courts of stateCurrentness(1)(a) A person, whether or not a citizen or resident of this state, who personally or through an agent does any of the acts enumerated in this subsection thereby submits himself or herself and, if he or she is a natural person, his or her personal representative to the jurisdiction of the courts of this state for any cause of action arising from any of the following acts:1. Operating, conducting, engaging in, or carrying on a business or business venture in this state or having an office or agency in this state.
Legalinfomd : 2. Committing a tortious act within this state.
Legalinfomd : 6. Causing injury to persons or property within this state arising out of an act or omission by the defendant outside this state, if, at or about the time of the injury, either:a. The defendant was engaged in solicitation or service activities within this state; orb. Products, materials, or things processed, serviced, or manufactured by the defendant anywhere were used or consumed within this state in the ordinary course of commerce, trade, or use.
Legalinfomd : 7. Breaching a contract in this state by failing to perform acts required by the contract to be performed in this state.
Legalinfomd : Whether jurisdiction in Florida exists over the California company is a question of fact depending on the nature and extent of business being conducted in Florida. It sounds as if you certainly have enough of a factual basis to sue in Florida to force the California company to defend in Florida. It would be up to the CA company to file a motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction, if it so choses. But based upon the facts you have provided, you have a pretty strong shot at defeating such a motion.
Legalinfomd : I hope that the information provided has been useful. Please be sure to provide a positive rating of OK or better for my response so that I will be credited for my time. Thank you and good luck with your matter.

Thank you. Your answer is exactly on point.

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