Sunday, May 19, 2024

Florida real estate groups file lawsuit against law prohibiting Chinese nationals from purchasing homes | Tampa

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Lawsuit Challenges Florida Property Ownership Restrictions for People from Seven Countries

The housing and real estate industry in Florida is facing a legal battle as housing and real estate groups filed a federal lawsuit challenging a measure approved by Gov. Ron DeSantis and state lawmakers to restrict property ownership by people from China and six other countries. The lawsuit, filed in Miami, argues that the law violates the federal Fair Housing Act and part of the Florida Constitution.

The restrictions apply to individuals who are “domiciled” in a foreign country of concern and are not citizens or permanent residents of the U.S., including those on student visas. The law, known as SB 364, prevents people from the seven countries from buying property within 10 miles of military installations or critical infrastructure facilities.

Supporters of the measure, including DeSantis, cited national security concerns and the need to curb the influence of foreign governments in Florida. However, the lawsuit alleges that the law is discriminatory and based on stereotyped and xenophobic generalizations.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit, including the National Fair Housing Alliance and the Asian Real Estate Association of America, are seeking an injunction to block enforcement of the law. The case is pending in federal court, with a previous lawsuit challenging restrictions on people from China also making its way through the legal system.

The outcome of these legal battles could have significant implications for property ownership and real estate transactions in Florida. Stay tuned for updates on this developing story.

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