Getting Rooted in the Sun(shine State): Establishing Florida Residency

The purchase of a home in the beautiful sunshine state of Florida comes with more benefits than just the sun! Florida property owners may be eligible for homestead exemption and additional benefits that will reduce their property tax liability on their permanent residence. As defined in Florida Statute 196.012(17), for purposes of the homestead exemption, “residence” is the place where a person has his or her true, fixed, and permanent home and principal establishment to which, whenever absent, he or she has the intention of returning.  A person may have only one permanent residence at a time.

Upon moving to Florida, it is important to establish residency. The following is a list of actions in which an individual can take to show their intention to become a Florida resident:

  1. Obtain a Florida driver’s license or identification card and relinquish a drivers license, if you have one, from another state
  2. Title homestead property
  3. Register a motor vehicle in Florida
  4. Register to vote in Florida and become active in community and/or religious organizations
  5. Declare domicile through a filing in the public records of the county in which you live
  6. Use a Florida bank for all or most banking transactions
  7. Notify anyone with whom you deal to send mail and correspondence to your Florida residence.  This should include the Social Security Administration, the IRS, doctors, financial institutions, etc.
  8. Declare Florida as your residence in your Last Will and Testament.

We are here to assist you if you have any questions on how to effectively establish residency in Florida, or if you would like to discuss other estate planning and tax matters. We encourage you to speak with your local real estate or estate planning attorney for guidance.


Berlin Patten Ebling, PLLC

Article Authored by Pamela Hernandez, Esq.

This communication is not intended to establish an attorney client relationship, and to the extent anything contained herein could be construed as legal advice or guidance, you are strongly encouraged to consult with your own attorney before relying upon any information contained herein.

All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.


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