Service of Process in a Florida Foreclosure Lawsuit
With the considerable increase in Florida home foreclosures, mortgage lenders are becoming anxious to foreclose and therefore end up making more and more mistakes in prosecuting foreclosure actions. One of the most significant errors lenders make is when they fail to correctly serve homeowners in Florida foreclosure lawsuits.
When a lender or a bank wants to foreclose on a property, they are to file a Complaint with the Clerk of Court located in the same county as the subject property. Next, they are to hire a “Process Server”, an individual licensed to serve Complaints (Summons) on named Defendants. This Process Server is to personally serve this initial pleading directly to the named Defendant at his or her usual place of residence in order to notify them of the pending legal action being taken against them. Service by publication is only acceptable after all other efforts are exhausted.
Once served, the Defendant usually has twenty days to file a written response, either by way of an answer or by filing a Motion to Dismiss. If the Complaint is not responded to within the outlined time limit, a Default Judgment is likely to be entered against the Defendant, meaning the Defendant forfeits their right to defend against the relief sought by the Plaintiff.
Service of Process is one of the main areas lenders neglect in their haste to push foreclosure cases through the courts. Because of the overwhelming number of Florida foreclosure cases being filed, both courts and mortgage companies are having trouble ensuring proper Service of Process. Receiving proper Service of Process is crucial, not only because it is the law, but also because the Summons contains information such as the homeowner's rights and responsibilities regarding the suit.
The good news for Florida homeowners is that, with the lender's failure to properly serve the foreclosure lawsuit, there becomes an opportunity for foreclosure defense. Call 407-883-2618 to get in touch with our Orlando foreclosure lawyers at The Freedom Law Firm today. Foreclosure defense is incredibly important and the cost is very low. Our Orlando foreclosure defense lawyers are experienced and want to help you! Call anytime, day or night!