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A Quick Guide to the Laws of Foreclosure in Florida
Florida is a lien theory state, which means the property acts as security for the underlying mortgage loan.
The legal instruments that establish a Florida mortgage are called a mortgage, a note or a security agreement depending on the kind of property in question. Some properties may be encumbered with a mortgage and a security agreement, as is common in commercial real estate.
Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, which means lenders must go to court to issue a final judgement of foreclosure. The foreclosed property is then sold in a publicly advertised foreclosure sale. A complaint is filed in court along with a lis pendens, a recorded document that provides public notice of the foreclosure.
Uncontested foreclosures generally take between 180 and 200 days to effectuate. Florida has a statutory right of redemption, which allows a person to reclaim their foreclosed property if they pay the sum of the loan, plus costs, within a predetermined period of time.
Deficiency judgements are permitted in Florida. A deficiency judgement is a judgement placed on the former owner when their foreclosed property does not cover the amount owed on the loan.
The laws of foreclosure in Florida are found in F.S. 702.01 et. seq.
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