Intrusion law in Florida does not differ in any significant way from the law described in the General Elements of an Intrusion Claim section of this guide. See Wolfson v. Lewis, 924 F. Supp. 1413, 1419 (E.D. Pa. 1996) (interpreting Florida law), which highlights Florida's recognition of intrusion and shows its adoption of the elements of a claim described in the Restatement (Second) of Torts. As result, you should follow the general advice outlined in the section on Practical Tips for Avoiding Liability When Gathering Private Information.
Other Potential Bases for Liability
Florida also has a stalking statute (Florida Statute 784.048) that prohibits engaging in a pattern of conduct directed at a specific person that causes substantial emotional distress to that person. If you violate this statute, you could be held liable for stalking and your actions could be viewed as an intrusion.
Practical Tips for Avoiding Liability When Gathering Private Information
While you can't always eliminate your legal risks when gathering news or information, there are a number of ways you can minimize your risk of being on the receiving end of an intrusion lawsuit. See the section on Practical Tips for Avoiding Liability When Gathering Private Information for general advice on minimizing your risks. In Florida, you should also consider:
- Even if your conduct does not match the four elements needed to meet the general intrusion claim, be sure that your conduct does not amount to stalking of another person, as that will lead to liability as well.
- Florida extends the defense of consent to cases that involve 'media ride-alongs', as discussed in the Trespass Section of this guide. In Florida Publ'g Co. v. Fletcher, 340 So. 2d 914, 918 (Fla. 1976), the court held there was implied consent when media members accepted an invitation by an officer investigating a fire to enter private property, and therefore no intrusion claim existed.