Florida Senate - 2019                                     SB 316
       By Senator Taddeo
       40-00202B-19                                           2019316__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to contracts for the sale or lease of
    3         pets; creating s. 828.32, F.S.; providing legislative
    4         intent; defining the term “pet”; declaring that
    5         certain contracts entered into on or after a specified
    6         date for the sale or lease of a pet are void and
    7         unenforceable as being against the public policy of
    8         this state; providing an exception; providing remedies
    9         for noncompliance; providing penalties; providing an
   10         effective date.
   12  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   14         Section 1. Section 828.32, Florida Statutes, is created to
   15  read:
   16         828.32Contracts for the sale or lease of pets.—
   17         (1) It is the intent of the Legislature to protect
   18  consumers in this state from deceptive and predatory financing
   19  arrangements and to protect pets from the harmful effects of
   20  such arrangements by making it a policy of the state to prohibit
   21  the leasing of pets.
   22         (2) As used in this section, the term:
   23         (a) Pet” means a living animal that has been acquired for
   24  the primary purpose of providing companionship to the owner,
   25  rather than for a business or agricultural purpose.
   26         (b) “Pet dealer” has the same meaning as in s. 828.29(13).
   27         (3) A contract entered into on or after July 1, 2019, to do
   28  any of the following is against the public policy of this state
   29  and is void and unenforceable:
   30         (a) Transfer ownership of a pet, if the pet is used as
   31  collateral for the contract or is subject to repossession in any
   32  manner upon default of the contract. Such prohibition does not
   33  apply to sales in which payments are made to repay an unsecured
   34  loan for the purchase of the animal.
   35         (b) Lease a pet, if the contract provides for or offers the
   36  option of transferring ownership of the animal at the end of the
   37  lease term.
   38         (4) In addition to any other remedies provided by law, the
   39  consumer taking possession of a pet transferred under a contract
   40  described in this section is the owner of the pet and is
   41  entitled to the return of all amounts the consumer paid under
   42  such contract.
   43         (5) A person who offers a pet for lease or as collateral
   44  for a contract in violation of this section commits a
   45  noncriminal violation as defined in s. 775.08(3) and upon
   46  conviction shall be punished as provided in s. 775.082(5) by a
   47  civil fine of not more than $500 for a first violation and not
   48  more than $1,000 for a second or subsequent violation.
   49         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2019.