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Florida Foreclosure Defense

We live in unprecedented times.  Folks are losing their income and their jobs in record numbers around the country.  Even before the coronavirus pandemic, millions of Americans were struggling with crippling debt.  One out of every 200 homes is foreclosed upon across the country each year.  If you are struggling with credit card debt, medical bills, mortgages, and other forms of consumer debt, you are not alone.

You do, however, have options to revitalize your finances, rebuild your credit, and protect your home.  The Law Office of Verna Popo, P.A. is committed to helping individuals and families around the country save their homes, secure debt relief, and find financial security and freedom.  We are committed to making financial independence a reality for those who are struggling with debt. Here’s how we can help if you are facing foreclosure.

The Bankruptcy Automatic Stay

One of the most surefire ways to stop foreclosure, or at least delay the foreclosure proceedings, is to file for bankruptcy.  Regardless of whether you file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy court will issue an “automatic stay” of all collection proceedings.  Repossessions, phone calls, letters, lawsuits, and foreclosure proceedings must all immediately halt, regardless of where they are in the proceedings.  The automatic stay is one of the biggest advantages of filing for bankruptcy.

Once your mortgage becomes part of your Chapter 13 repayment plan, your lender will not be able to foreclose for the duration of the repayment period, so long as you keep up with your monthly payments (which can be reduced from your pre-bankruptcy obligation).  If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your mortgage will likely not be included in the discharge, but you may be able to become current given the relief provided by the discharge of other debt.  Even if you are still unable to make your mortgage payments at the moment, the stay will give you additional time to get your finances in order before the bank is allowed to foreclose.  In order to foreclose during a bankruptcy proceeding, the bank will have to petition the court to “lift” the stay, which can take several weeks or longer.

Coronavirus Relief

The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has left millions of Americans in dire financial straits.  Companies are seeing reduced business or have been shut down entirely, leaving many people with reduced income or without a job.  The federal and state governments have issued edicts meant to prevent individuals from losing their homes as a result of the novel coronavirus, although the relief is not permanent.

GSE-backed and Federal Mortgages.  According to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, as well as other federal agency statements, if you are a homeowner with a federally- or GSE-backed (Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac) or funded mortgage, then your lender or loan servicer may not pursue foreclosure proceedings until at least December 31, 2020.  Lenders may not seek judicial or non-judicial foreclosure or finalize a foreclosure judgment or sale until 2021.  Additionally, you may request a forbearance on your loan for up to 180 days without incurring additional fees, penalties, or added interest.

Florida State Relief.  Earlier this year, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued a suspension on foreclosure and residential evictions.  Through subsequent executive orders, the suspension has been extended to October 1, 2020.  The Governor may issue further suspensions as the pandemic continues to rage on.  The relief is far more limited than the federal relief under the CARES Act:  Landlords and lenders can file eviction and foreclosure actions but cannot take “final action” to actually kick folks out of their homes so long as the tenants and homeowners prove that they lost income due to COVID-19.  Borrowers must be able to show that they suffer hardship specifically because of the pandemic, and individual judges have the discretion to determine whether the proof offered is sufficient to hold off eviction and foreclosure.  Tenants and homeowners have a limited time to seek such relief, so it is important to act quickly.

Save Your Home and Protect Your Family

At the Law Office of Verna Popo, we truly care about the people we represent. You are not just another client to us, and this is not just a job we do. We take a personal interest in your case and do everything we can to help you achieve a successful outcome. We will do everything in our power to protect your home and your family, and we will work with you to determine the best solution for your financial troubles.  Call our Miami office for a free consultation. We look forward to helping you chart a path toward a brighter financial future.

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