A free standing deck is a self supporting deck structure built independently from a house wall ledger board attachment. Some free standing decks stand alone in an open area. Above ground pool decks are often built free standing in this fashion.
Some decks can't be attached directly to the house using ledger boards because of a house cantilever or a brick veneer. These decks can be built free standing using an additional beam and posts situated next to the house wall. It is important that these frost footings are installed on top of compacted soil to prevent them from sinking. Many new houses have unsettled soil surrounding the house foundation that was backfilled during construction.
Free standing decks greater than 2 feet above grade must be able to resist lateral and horizontal movement by providing diagonal bracing.