Veto clock ticking on Florida foreclosure bill
The bill aimed at speeding up Florida’s foreclosure process was submitted to Gov. Rick Scott’s office Tuesday, giving him 15 days to veto it, sign it, or let it pass into law without his signature.
Scott spokesman John Tupps said the governor has until June 12 to take action on the bill.
The legislation, HB 87, has strong opposition from foreclosure defense attorneys and homeowner advocacy groups who are lobbying for Scott to veto the plan. But community association groups and the powerful Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section of the Florida Bar are supporting the plan.
Opponents say the bill violates the constitution and fundamental property rights of homeowners to regain the property if a foreclosure is later found to be fraudulent. The bill has a retroactive provision that would affect all previous foreclosures.
“Based on my review of the bill and my first-hand experience in various courthouses in the state defending foreclosures, I find the proposed bill highly inappropriate in that it violates the constitutional tenant of Ex Post Facto through retroactive application of the law to rights of residential property owners,” said South Florida attorney Roy Oppenheim in a letter to the governor. “If you sign the bill into law, it would unconditionally impair the rights of residential property owners in the state of Florida, and further disrupt the Florida economy by creating uncertainty as to the constitutionality and fairness of the bill.”