The Florida Supreme Court recently amended several of the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure relating to mortgage foreclosures. The amended and new rules with forms are in response to recent legislation regarding mortgage foreclosure actions. Chapter 2013-173, Laws of Florida, created a new section 702.015. This statutory provision sets forth new pleading requirements for mortgage foreclosure complaints and is intended to “expedite the foreclosure process by ensuring initial disclosure of plaintiff’s status and the facts supporting that status, thereby ensuring the availability of documents necessary to prosecution of the case.” Following this statutory change, Rule 1.110(b) has been modified to remove certain language specific to mortgage foreclosures, and Rule 1.115 has been created to address specific pleading requirements for mortgage foreclosures. The changes became effective December 11, 2014.
The new Rule 1.115 calls for more specific details to the complaint regarding the factual basis of which the plaintiff, or claimant, is entitled to with respect to enforcing the note. The claimant also must file a certification with the filing of the claim for relief for foreclosure to show the claimant is in possession of the original promissory note. If the claimant is seeking to enforce a lost, destroyed, or stolen instrument, the claimant is required to execute under penalty of perjury an affidavit setting forth a detailed chain of endorsements, transfers, or assignments of the note and providing the appropriate facts to show that the claimant is entitled to enforce such document.
Below are several highlights of the amendments:
- Rule 1.110(b) – the verification language was removed from this rule and incorporated in new Rule 1.115
- Rule 1.115 –a new rule created that provides initial pleading requirements in mortgage foreclosure cases (covers claims for relief, delegated claim for relief, possession of original promissory note, and lost, destroyed or stolen instrument)
- Forms 1.944(a) and (b) – complaint forms that were revised in order to detail the plaintiffs’ standing. One new addition includes an “Affidavit of Compliance.”
- Form 1.944(c) and (d) – the “Motion for Order to Show Cause” and “Order to Show Cause” forms were incorporated for compliance with section 702.10(1), Fla. Stat. (2013)
- Form 1.996(a) – the “Final Judgment of Foreclosure” form was revised to add titles, update the statutory reference regarding time for right of redemption, and includes a new paragraph on attorneys’ fees
- Form 1.996(b) – a new form entitled “Final Judgment of Foreclosure for Reestablishment of Lost Note” which is intended for use when a lost promissory note is re-established by a foreclosure judgment
These additions and revisions make significant changes to the rules and forms affecting foreclosures, and you will most certainly want to review them carefully if you are involved with foreclosure lawsuits. It is essential to work with a qualified foreclosure attorney throughout the process. Contact us today for a consultation and to review how the amendments can impact your current foreclosure situation.