Locke Lord QuickStudy: Suspension of Foreclosure and Eviction Activity in Florida Due to Covid-19

Locke Lord LLP
April 9, 2020

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order Number 20-94 on April 2, 2020 suspending and tolling any statute providing for a mortgage foreclosure cause of action under Florida law for 45 days.  The Order also suspends and tolls any statute providing for an eviction cause of action under Florida law solely as it relates to non-payment by residential tenants due to Covid-19.  The Executive Order effectively precludes the filing of all new residential foreclosure or eviction cases through May 17, 2020.

Further, the Circuit Court of the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Palm Beach County, Florida has cancelled all foreclosure sales up to and including May 29, 2020 per Administrative Order 12.510-04/2020.8 entered April 6, 2020.  The Circuit Court of the Fourth Judicial Circuit in and for Duval County, Florida has also issued administrative orders concerning residential foreclosures and evictions and has cancelled all residential foreclosure hearings for existing cases through April 17, 2020, cancelled all foreclosure sales through April 30, 2020 and stayed enforcement of all writs of possession or eviction until April 30, 2020.

Previously on March 12, 2020, the Miami-Dade Police Department announced that it “has temporarily suspended all eviction activities until further notice.”  Similarly, all foreclosure and tax deed sales that were scheduled in Miami-Dade County for the weeks of March 16, March 23 and March 30 were cancelled.  According to Miami-Dade’s auction calendar, all foreclosure sales for the weeks of April 6 and April 13, 2020 have also been cancelled.

The Clerk of Court for Hillsborough County, Florida has also issued a notice to all landlords that the Hillsborough Sheriff’s Office will not serve any eviction notices before April 20, 2020.  The Broward Sheriff’s Office and Seventeenth Judicial Circuit have also announced the temporary stoppage of all eviction activities.

Courts and counties throughout the state have acted in a similar fashion.  Lenders, loan servicers and landlords should check with local courts and law enforcement to determine the status of all foreclosure sales and evictions.  Each Florida county is tasked with completing its own foreclosure auctions and local law enforcement are utilized to enforce writs of possession and eviction.  Delays through at least the end of April for all foreclosure and eviction activities should be expected.

Visit our COVID-19 Resource Center often for up-to-date information to help you stay informed of the legal issues related to COVID-19.