Florida Laws on Filming With & Without a Permit

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Florida Laws on Filming With & Without a Permit

Filmmakers that are visiting the Sunshine State for a commercial film shoot must know the various Florida laws on filming with and without a permit. In fact, one of the biggest concerns a traveling filmmaker will have is whether or not they will be require a permit before a shoot. Failure to obtain a Florida film permit can lead to legal challenges and may even result in your film shoot being shut down so it’s best to know what you’re up against ahead of the game.

BBP FIlm Crew

Florida Film Permitting Process

Filming in Florida is almost guaranteed to require a permit. Or a location agreement of some kind and in some cases you’ll need both!

Fortunately, Florida laws on filming in public locations are generally pretty easy to understand. And the film permitting process is equally easy to follow. Individual permits are granted by the city or county in which you intend to film. 

Plan Ahead

Most Florida counties require at least 24 hours advance notice prior to submitting for a permit to film in the Sunshine State. For larger cities, expect the permitting process to take upwards of 10 business days.

The location you’re scheduled to shoot in, and the complexity of your shoot, will play a key role in how extensive your permitting process is. Especially if you require the additional support of local fire, police, or other professional services.

When is a Film Permit Required in Florida?

Florida laws on filming without a permit are really quite simple. If you’re filming on public property, if your filming is going to impact others, or if your filmmaking will impact the environment in which you’re filming at. Then you will need to have a Florida film permit.

Basically, a film permit is required in Florida under all of the following circumstances:

  • If you’re filming for commercial purposes.
  • When you’re filming in any public location including on Florida roadways or sidewalks.
  • If you plan to use equipment that could interrupt regular operations or foot traffic.
  • When you’re using the public space in which you’re filming. In any way other than for which it is normally for use.

Public Filming

As you can see, Florida laws on filming basically state that a film permit is necessary under most situations that involve filming in public.

For this reason, it’s important for you to plan ahead. Arrive early! And apply for a film permit several weeks in advance so that you don’t delay your production.

Is there Anywhere in Florida Where a Film Permit is NOT Required?

Technically, there are locations in Florida where a film permit is not necessary. But you might still require a location agreement even in these situations.

For example

You do NOT need a film permit if you are filming on private property. And your filmmaking will not interrupt any county or city roadways or public locations.

This means, according to Florida laws on filming without a permit, that as long as you are parking your crew, and keeping all crew activities on private property, you will not need a permit.

Otherwise, under all other circumstances, you will almost definitely need a  film permit for safe, legal shooting in Florida.

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