BRADENTON, FL — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an executive order Wednesday extending his suspension of all foreclosures and residential evictions in the case of Floridians who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus.
The governor's previous extension order, which was to expire at 12:01 a.m. Aug. 1 now will expire at 12:01 a.m. Sept. 1, according to a new order signed Wednesday night. The initial order was issued in April.
The change gives struggling Floridians an extra month if they are unable to pay their mortgages or rent before their landlords or lenders can take action. The extension does not relieve their obligation to pay.
"All payments, including tolled payments, are due when an individual is no longer adversely affected by the COVID-19 emergency," according to the order.
Miami attorney David Winker previously told Patch there are hundreds of evictions waiting in Florida courts for the governor's order to expire.
While the governor's order doesn't remove the obligation to pay, it does give Floridians additional time to reach agreement with their landlord or lender, particularly as people return to work.
The governor's executive order assures no further action will take place on any mortgage foreclosures around the state, including those covered by a nationwide moratorium.
In addition to freezing foreclosure actions, the Florida measure also blocks the evictions of Florida renters for nonpayment of rent in the case of residential renters who have been harmed by the new coronavirus outbreak.
Winker said the language in the Florida governor's order offers protections to people who lost their jobs as a result of the outbreak, but not directly to the small business owners who rent their premises.
The governor's initial order noted the coronavirus health emergency has "impacted the ability of many Floridians" to make timely mortgage and rent payments. A number of Floridians found themselves in difficult positions as April, May, June, July and now August rent and mortgage obligations come due.