Trusted Foreclosure Attorney
Need Florida Foreclosure Defense? Read on. The process of Florida foreclosure begins when a homeowner falls behind on their monthly mortgage payment for a period of time. A Lender may institute collection proceedings or hire a lawyer to file a lawsuit, called a complaint. For most people, being served with a complaint for foreclosure is frightening and the fear of losing your home can be overwhelming.
Before you panic, you should know that you have legal rights and alternative options to Florida foreclosure. The key to becoming aware of these options is working with an experienced foreclosure defense law firm like Caroline Secor, P.A.
Foreclosure Process in Florida: Foreclosure Steps
It is during the pre-foreclosure period when the mortgage holder is late or behind with a payment and remains living in the property while the foreclosure proceedings begin. The average time frame to go through the Florida foreclosure process is five to six months from the beginning steps until the finalization of a foreclosure.
Notice of Default
The Notice of Default is the first indication of the Florida foreclosure process and is triggered by being late or delinquent on the mortgage for an extended period of time. The lienholder or lender will send a written notice sent to the mortgage holder stating the amount of money that is owed and the duration of time left to make the required payment. A Notice of Default will have clear directions guiding an individual on what is needed to be done in order to become current on payments and prevent furthering the foreclosure process in Florida.
After the Notice of Default timeline has passed without proper repayment, a lender will file a lis pendens (lawsuit pending) which formally starts the Florida foreclosure process. During this pending lawsuit, the homeowner will remain in possession of the property and retains the right to sell or seek refinancing.
Notice of Action
The Notice of Action is the next step of the Florida foreclosure process. When a mortgage holder cannot meet the terms stated in the Notice of Default, a Notice of Action is posted in the local newspaper. In the Notice of Action, it states the lienholder or mortgage lender’s written demands and the consequences of losing the property if the demands are not met.
When the demands of the Notice of Action have been unfulfilled, the foreclosure action occurs. The foreclosure action is filed in the county court where the property is located and states the mortgagee’s intent to evict the resident and obtain the property. The Florida foreclosure action will post the date and time of the auction where the property will be sold which could be anywhere from three to six weeks after the foreclosure action occurs.
Redemption can occur at any point in the proceedings. At any time before the auction of the property, the mortgage holder can take back the property if they can pay off the mortgage in full. If they can pay for the mortgage in full, the Florida foreclosure proceedings are halted and the mortgage holders can move in and reassume ownership of the property.
The final step of the Florida foreclosure process is the Sheriffs sale. It is during the Sheriffs sale when the property is auctioned off to the highest bidder at the county courthouse. Once a bidder has won the auction, the former mortgage holder has terminated all of their rights to the property. Within ten days of a successful sale, the title is transferred to the winning bidder.
Florida Foreclosure Laws
Judicial Foreclosure Available (Yes)
Non-Judicial Foreclosure Available (No)
Primary Security Instruments (Mortgage)
Timeline Average (180 days)
Right of Redemption (Yes)
Deficiency Judgments Allowed (Yes)
In Florida, all mortgages are foreclosed in equity. The foreclosure claim will be tried, if needed, in court without a jury. The court order of Florida foreclosure will specify how the foreclosure must take place, and the foreclosure terms. Whenever a legal advertisement, publication, or notice relating to a foreclosure proceeding is required to be placed in a newspaper, it is the responsibility of the lender or their representative to place such advertisement, publication, or notice.
Equitable Right of Redemption ends at the Florida foreclosure sale or at another time specified by the courts. There is a period of time after the sale that the court reviews the sale to ensure a fair market value has been paid. This period of time allows parties to object to the sale on the basis that proper procedures were not followed. This period is typically 10 days, after which the Certificate of Sale is filed and title passes once the sale is confirmed. If the sale is not confirmed, another sale is ordered. The lender may sue to obtain a deficiency judgment in Florida.
Foreclosure Mediation / Florida Foreclosure Defense
The term Florida foreclosure mediation refers to any instance in which a third party helps others reach an agreement surrounding the foreclosure process in Florida.
Florida Foreclosure mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution, which is a way of resolving disputes between two or more parties with effective results. Mediation can anticipate difficulties between parties before conflict emerges.
As the foreclosure process in Florida forces homeowners out of their homes, Florida remains one of the hardest-hit states in the country. As a response in 2009, The Florida Supreme Court established the Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program (RMFMP) to provide an opportunity to work with your lender to reach an agreement that will allow you to stay in your home. Unfortunately, in December of 2011, this program was terminated by the Supreme Court due to its low success rate.
You still have options.
Mediation After 2011
Mediation and negotiation with the lender can still be achieved and can be very beneficial when dealing with loan modifications, Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure or short sale. Attorneys at Carolyn Secor, P.A. can advise you and help prepare you for the mediation process.
Our experienced mediators use various techniques to open, improve, or create a dialogue between parties aiming to help the parties reach an agreement.
The mediation process generally takes much less time than moving a case through the foreclosure process in Florida. An advantage of mediation is that it remains strictly confidential compared to court hearings which are public.
What can foreclosure mediation do for you?
- Change current interest rates from variable to fixed
- Reduce your current mortgage payments
- Extend the current term of the loan
- Reduce your current mortgage balance
- Bring your loan current
Why Would Mediation be a Good Strategy?
Mediation increases the control the parties involved will have over the resolution and as a result, mediation is more likely to produce a result that is mutually agreeable for all parties involved. As a result of mutually agreeable interests, compliance with mediated agreements is usually very high.
During the mediation process of a Florida foreclosure, both parties are typically ready to work toward a mutual resolution. In most cases, the fact that both parties are willing to mediate, means they are ready to move their position.
Mediation is fully enforceable in a court of law. However, because both parties involved have a mutual interest, they do not have to hire third-parties to force compliance with the agreement in a court of law, and as a result, costs are usually kept low.
Mediation is recognized with strong levels of satisfaction with the process when compared to the foreclosure process in Florida. Surveys conducted on mediation parties reveal parties are generally satisfied post-settlement.
The Carolyn Secor, P.A. has many trained experts with hands-on experience in helping with Florida mediation.
When we open your case, our experienced attorneys can help you reach an agreement that best suits your needs. The attorneys at Carolyn Secor, P.A. will work diligently to get the most out of your mediation and get you back on track to keep you in your home.
Call for a free consultation 727-334-0729.