What is Justifiable Use of Force in Florida?
A person is justified in using or threatening to use force, except deadly force, against another when and to the extent that the person reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to defend himself or herself or another against the other’s imminent use of unlawful force.
Florida Statutes Chapter 776 – Justifiable Use of Force
776.012 – Use or threatened use of force in defense of person.
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776.013 – Home protection; use or threatened use of deadly force; presumption of fear of death or great bodily harm.
(1) A person who is in a dwelling or residence in which the person has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and use or threaten to use:
(2) A person is presumed to have held a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another when using or threatening to use defensive force that is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm to another if:
(3) The presumption set forth in subsection (2) does not apply if:
(5) As used in this section, the term:
776.031 – Use or threatened use of force in defense of property.
776.032 – Immunity from criminal prosecution and civil action for justifiable use or threatened use of force.
776.041 – Use or threatened use of force by aggressor.
The justification described in the preceding sections of this chapter is not available to a person who:
(2) Initially provokes the use or threatened use of force against himself or herself, unless:
776.05 – Law enforcement officers; use of force in making an arrest.
A law enforcement officer, or any person whom the officer has summoned or directed to assist him or her, need not retreat or desist from efforts to make a lawful arrest because of resistance or threatened resistance to the arrest. The officer is justified in the use of any force:
(3) When necessarily committed in arresting felons fleeing from justice. However, this subsection shall not constitute a defense in any civil action for damages brought for the wrongful use of deadly force unless the use of deadly force was necessary to prevent the arrest from being defeated by such flight and, when feasible, some warning had been given, and:
776.051 – Use or threatened use of force in resisting arrest or making an arrest or in the execution of a legal duty; prohibition.
776.06 – Deadly force by a law enforcement or correctional officer.
776.07 – Use of force to prevent escape.
776.08 – Forcible felony.
776.085 – Defense to civil action for damages; party convicted of forcible or attempted forcible felony.
(4) In any civil action where a party prevails based on the defense created by this section:
(a) The losing party, if convicted of and incarcerated for the crime or attempted crime, shall, as determined by the court, lose any privileges provided by the correctional facility, including, but not limited to: