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State Guide for Florida

This guide was written by Francine Carrel, Assistant Editor of Guides.Global (office@guides.global).

It was written on 26 September 2016. The law and practice in the United States change all the time. Our guides are updated as frequently as possible - typically every three years - but may be out of date.

Our guides are prepared by professionals from many countries. They are, of necessity, both brief and general and can take no account of your personal circumstances. They are intended to be a good introduction to the subject BUT ARE NO SUBSTITUTE FOR PROPER PROFESSIONAL ADVICE, which our contributors will usually be happy to provide upon request.

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Introduction

flag of florida
The State Flag

Florida is the United State's 3rd most populous state. It's been a part of the US since 1845, when it became the 27th State.

Florida is one of the most popular expat destinations in the US. In 2014 it had 4 million foreign residents, behind only California (10.5 million), New York and Texas (4.5 million each). That adds up to nearly 20% of the Floridian population. According to Map the Impact, the top countries of origin are Cuba, Haiti and Colombia.

Florida is so popular with expats because of its proximity to South America (the state's a 'gateway' to the US), a warm climate, high tourism levels (many who enjoy holidays in Florida decide to retire there) and lifestyle (lots of amusement parks, beaches etc).

Geography

State capital: Tallahassee (2010 population: 181,376)

Size: 170,304 km² (22 of 50 states)

Coastline length: 2,170 km (2 of 50 States - only Alaska has more coastline)

People

Population: 19.89 million (2014) (3 of 50 states)

Expat population: 4 million (2014) (4 of 50 states) lightbulb image - click here for more information on this subject

Expat population percentage: 19.4%

Languages: English (official state language, 73%), Spanish (20%), French Creole (2%) lightbulb image - click here for more information on this subject

Economy

GDP: $893,189 million (4 of 50 states)

GDP per capita: $38,950 (42 of 50 states) lightbulb image - click here for more information on this subject

Unemployment levels: 4.7% (35 of 50 states) lightbulb image - click here for more information on this subject

Florida's economy is driven by a number of sectors.

Tourism (top visitor countries: Canada, the UK and Brazil) accounts for around $51 billion of the state's GDP (2015) and employs over 1 million people.

Agriculture (orange juice, tomatoes, sugar cane, dairy) employs a further 2 million people.

International trade is a huge part of Florida's economy: the state exported around $81.7 billion's worth of goods in 2014.

Aerospace and aviation is another big sector. Though it employs only about 87,000 workers, it contributes an estimated $144 billion per year to the economy.

Culture

Religions: Protestant (40%), Catholic (26%), Jewish (3%), Other - Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu (>1% each); Unaffiliated (24%: 3% atheist and 4% agnostic) lightbulb image - click here for more information on this subject

Florida is a gateway to South America, and popular with immigrant populations from around the world. Hispanic influences are obvious throughout the state, particularly in the south.

Climate

Florida's nickname is 'the Sunshine State'. See our Climate Guide for Florida.

Our Guides

Our guides contain a mass of information about living, working, doing business, retiring & investing in the US. Check them out here.

Readers' Comments

 

Further information?

I hope you have found this guide useful. If you need any further help, please contact me.

Francine Carrel

26 September 2016


 

This guide was co-authored by John Howell (Email: John.Howell@Guides.Global or John@jhco.org. Web: www.jhco.org or www.Guides.Global)

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