STATES THAT HAVE ISSUED 'STATES OF EMERGENCIES' (rolling list will be updated): ~ March 21, 2020
FANNIE MAE, FREDDIE MAC and HUD ARE SUSPENDING ALL FORECLOSURES AND EVICTIONS FOR 60 DAYS. ~ March 18, 2020
Due to the COVID-19 Virus, the Federal Government announced a moratorium on foreclosures and eviction actions on federally backed MORTGAGES in the above listed programs. This does NOT apply to HUD subsidized rent recipients and programs. Private rental units (public as well) are covered by state law. (in Florida, Chapter 83).
There is NOTHING that prevents a landlord from filing an eviction action against renters for failure to pay rent. In fact, there are NO programs available to assist renters. Various County Sheriffs Departments have simply announced that they will not assist or carry out eviction orders from Florida Courts (at all).
If you are a HUD rent subsidy recipient, to protect yourself if you are laid off from your job and cannot pay your rent, IMMEDIATELY request a RECERTIFICATION. This will dramatically reduce or eliminate your rent obligation until you go back to work and can pay your rent.
Demand from your landlord (office) a recertification; (you should be familiar with this process)
Demand copies of your paperwork. (many landlords will try to deny you any paperwork. You can get it THEN, not after approval.)
When you go back to work, IMMEDIATELY do another recertification. There is no limit on recerts you can do per year.
If you wait too long, DO NOT COMPLAIN, IT IS YOUR FAULT. If you get evicted, it will be your fault for waiting. SO DON'T WAIT!
FLORIDA GOVERNOR DE SANTIS ISSUES A STATE OF EMERGENCY ~ March 9, 2020
Due to COVID-19, Governor of De Santis issued State of Emergency Order 20-52 allowing him to suspend any or all state statutes and enforcement regulations for the health, safety, and welfare of the State pursuant to Florida Statutes 252.36. On March 17, 2020 he again expanded his State of Emergency (Order 20-68) to order the closures of multiple businesses and locations. These closures and restrictions on congregations of people have caused massive job layoffs and financial uncertainty.
This State of Emergency as of yet does not apply to Chapter 83 (Florida Landlord Tenant Act) and as such, renters are STILL required to pay their rent. However, due to the uncertainty and "catch-22" of this State of Emergency, hundreds of thousands of renters will negatively be effected, even if their landlords; who are able to receive hardship freezes on their mortgage payments, are no required to pay their mortgage payments.
Watson Leigh has researched the statutes and case law and found valid affirmative defenses for renters who are unable to pay their rent due to the mandatory "social distancing" orders.
Watson Leigh has prepared a COVID-19 Hardship Letter to protect you and your family from potential eviction actions for the inability to pay rent due actions out of your control.
Due to high demand, we have drastically reduced the cost of communication letters like these, so if you are in need of a Hardship Letter that is specific to your unique situation, Click Here (subject line: Hardship Letter).