Blog Archives

Foreclosure Settlement Agreement Payments

If you recently received a letter and check from Rust Consulting, Inc., purporting  to be either a payment under a recent foreclosure settlement agreement or  asking for additional contact information so they can make such a payment to you, DO NOT ignore or destroy it. This may well be a legitimate payment under a recent Federal foreclosure settlement agreement.

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Posted in Real Estate Law
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FAQ: Types of Deeds

What are the common types of deeds in Florida?

There are three primary types of deeds:  quitclaim, special warranty, and general warranty.  The differences are in the warranty of title offered by the grantor.

A quitclaim deed provides no warranty of title.  It simply conveys whatever interest the grantor may have in the described property. 

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Posted in Real Estate Law
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HAFA Available for Investment Property

We are often asked by prospective clients who are facing foreclosure about their short sale options. One of the most popular short sale options is the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (“HAFA”) program offered by the U.S. Departments of the Treasury & Housing and Urban Development.

One of the great advantages of the HAFA program is that a HAFA short sale completely releases you from your mortgage debt after selling the property.

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Posted in Real Estate Law
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Homestead 3 Ways – Part 2: Creditor Protection

Homestead is found in 3 different contexts under the Florida Constitution: (i) taxation in Article VII, Section 6; (ii) creditor protection in Article X, Section 4(a) and (b); and (iii) devise and descent in Article X, Section 4(c).  This post follows my post on taxation and brings us to creditor protection.

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Posted in Estate Planning Law, Real Estate Law
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Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act Extended Through 2013

As part of the recent fiscal cliff deal, Congress extended the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act through the end of 2013. This is great news for those who may complete a short sale, loan modification, or other mortgage workout in 2013.

As part of a short sale, loan modification,

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Posted in Real Estate Law
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Tenants’ Rights During and After Foreclosure

A situation faced by many today and the reason for many recent calls to our office is when tenants renting residential property have just been served with a foreclosure complaint and summons. Many ask themselves why they are even a named defendant in a case based on a debt that does not relate to them.

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Homestead 3 Ways – Part 1: Taxation

I have encountered a lot of confusion lately regarding the import of the term “homestead” under Florida law.  At its most basic level, homestead is a Florida resident’s primary residence.  Designation as homestead, however, carries several important benefits and burdens.

Homestead is found in 3 different contexts under the Florida Constitution: (i) taxation in Article VII,

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Posted in Estate Planning Law, Real Estate Law
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Florida tax certificates and tax deeds

Most property owners know that property taxes are due on November 1 of each year, and are considered delinquent if not paid by April 1 of the following year.  Taxes paid early receive a discount of up to 4% if paid in November, which decreases by 1% each subsequent month until March when there is no discount. 

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Posted in Real Estate Law
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Interim assessments per Executive Order 10-169

On about July 21, 2010, Governor Crist issued Executive Order 10-169, which authorizes the Property Appraiser’s offices in counties affected by the Deepwater Horizon spill, which includes the coastal counties  of the Tampa Bay area, to provide taxpayers with an interim assessment for claims purposes only.

  • You may use the interim assessment to substantiate a claim to BP or any of the parties responsible.

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Posted in Business Law, Real Estate Law
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Tax Credit and Flood Insurance Extended

Two important federal legislative developments just recently occurred.

First, Congress passed the Homebuyer Assistance and Improvement Act (H.R. 5623), which extends closing deadline for purchases to qualify for the first time home buyer tax credit.  The extension applies only to contracts that were in effect as of April 30,

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