With an executive order filed at 8:10 p.m. June 30, Gov. Ron DeSantis extended the temporary moratorium on residential evictions and mortgage foreclosures until Aug. 2.
DeSantis issued the first suspension order on April 2 in response to the state public health emergency and the shutdown of nonessential businesses because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Florida’s unemployment rate jumped from 4.3% in March to 11.2% in April, according to data released by the state.
The suspension does not relieve a renter or mortgage holder from the obligation to pay for housing.
Mary DeVries, managing attorney at Clay County Legal Aid, a branch of Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, said in May people who can’t pay rent or their mortgage payment because they lost their job or part of their income because of the pandemic should communicate with their landlord or lender to work out a payment plan for when they return to work.
“Granted, landlords want their rent, but if income loss is temporary, they may be willing to work with the tenant,” DeVries said.
A sample letter requesting temporary rent reduction is available at jaxlegalaid.org, and the organization can help tenants if they are served eviction papers after the suspension expires and cannot afford to hire an attorney, DeVries said.
Visit the website or call (904) 356-8371 for more information.