The Florida Foreclosure Mediation Program

by Matt on January 3, 2012

The Florida Supreme Court has recently terminated its Managed Mediation Program for Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Cases making it easier and faster for banks to foreclose on your home.  The program was established by the Supreme Court in 2009 as an attempt to address the overwhelming number of foreclosure cases being filed in Florida.  Unfortunately, the program did not work and has now been scrapped.  But does this mean foreclosures case will no longer be referred to mediation?  NO.

Judges in Florida are empowered to direct cases to mediation on a case-by-case basis pursuant to 44.102, Florida Statues, and Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.700(a). So what does this mean?  It means that you can still request that the judge send your case to mediation and, in most cases, the court will grant your motion; especially if there is a reasonable chance you can save your home.  The bad news is that it also means you will likely be responsible for paying half of the mediator’s fee, which will generally be between $150 and $250 per hour.

The other consideration when requesting your case be referred to mediation is that the bank is under no obligation to settle on terms you find acceptable.  In fact, the bank’s only obligation at mediation is to have a representative present with the authority to settle the case.  They do not have to refinance your loan, change your interest rate or forgive past due payments.  In other words, if you want to save your home from foreclosure, you must convince the bank that it is in their best financial interest to refinance your mortgage.

If you have questions about the foreclosures, mediation or any other legal matter, please contact Matthew C. Bothwell, P.A. and let us help you solve your issues before they become problems.

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