3/2/12: SB 1890 has been placed on the Senate Calendar for second reading.
2/29/12: Our thanks and congratulations to Rep. Kathleen Passidomo who successfully managed the passage of HB 213 by the full house. This frequently misrepresented bill drew significant and often unwarranted attacks, but nonetheless passed the full house 97-17.
2/28/12 Update: HB 213, by Rep. Passidomo moved to second reading where various technical amendments were made. Like its senate companion, HB 213 has been stripped of the "finality" provision that was so important to the title industry. We nonetheless support the remainder of the bill as a good step toward solving some parts of the foreclosure problem.
2/27/12 Update: Recognizing the great impact that foreclosure problems are having on the people of Florida, the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee held a special, late in the session hearing to consider SB 1890 by Sen. Latvala. Out of concern that the "finality" provision might be construed to prevent criminal sanctions of lenders, the amendment preserving that important provision was withdrawn and the bill moved forward by a 6-4 vote.
2/24/12 Update: This morning, Senator Richter filed a proposed amendment to SB 1890 which would include the "finality Mini-MRTA provision" that FLTA has been advocating.
2/22/12 Update: This morning a strike all amendment for HB 213 was passed by the Senate judiciary committee. Unfortunately the Mini-MRTA provisions designed to protect a subsequent owner of the foreclosed property are still not part of the house bill. From here, the bill goes to the full house.
2/20/12 Update: In spite of opposition, the Senate Companion to the Foreclosure bill, SB 1890, by Senator Latvala passed was approved 5-2 by the Judiciary Committee. The approval included a strike all amendment which includes the title industry's Mini-MRTA provisions. You can review a copy of the Strike All here
2/8/12.8:45 am Update : This morning discussion was running long and the House Economic Affairs committee "Temporarily Passed" HB 213. this is a procedural move that keeps the bill alive, and but will require a later hearing and approval of the committee. This late in the process, this is not a positive thing. 1/27/12 FLTA members spent many months working with Florida Rep. Kathleen Passidomo (R-Naples) -- herself a Board Certified Real Estate Attorney -- on legislation to address some of the foreclosure problems facing Florida. Her bill included a clear duty on the part of the lender to provide unconditional estoppels within 15 days, to actually return the original note, and to provide a degree of protection to the innocent purchaser of foreclosed property.
We regret to report that the Civil Justice Subcommittee removed each of those important provisions from the bill. While the handling of estoppels and return of the original note, when paid in full, don't actually affect the foreclosure process, they apparently misunderstood that the ultimate goal of a foreclosure is to get the foreclosed property back into the stream of commerce. The finality of foreclosure judgments is a critical part of that process. FLTA will be working with the RPPTL section of the Florida Bar and others in an attempt to bring the finality provisions back into any final bill.
While we focus on a narrow aspect of the bill, we applaud Rep. Passidomo and the Civil Justice Subcommittee for taking on a very complex task and taking very good steps to fixing some of the key problems in Florida's foreclosure crisis.