Skip to Content

Controversy Surrounds Florida’s 5-Year Foreclosure Statute of Limitations

By Oppenheim Law on Foreclosure, Real Estate & Roy Oppenheim

Hi, this is Roy Oppenheim, real estate and foreclosure defense attorney from the trenches. I’m here today to talk a little bit about the five year statue of limitations in Florida. Wherever I go, I’m always asked what this five year statue of limitations means, and how it applies. And so, I’d like to try and explain it as simply as possible. It’s really not that simple, but we’re gonna try it anyway.

The five year statue of limitations is a five year period that begins from the time that the banks accelerates the loan. It’s not from the time where you stop paying the bank, or where you default, but rather it’s from the time that the loan has accelerated. The loan has accelerated one of two ways. It’s accelerated when you receive an actual notice of acceleration from the bank, not an intent to accelerate, but an actual notice of acceleration. That notice has that you owe all the money that you originally borrowed, all the interest, all the money that the bank previously laid out. Not just the bank payment, but everything.

Most banks do not issue notices of acceleration, as I said, they issue notice of an intent to accelerate. So usually the five year statue of limitations begin when the first foreclosure complaint is filed. And at that point, the five years actually stops for the bank, because if it takes one year, two years, seven years, within that same lawsuit, for that lawsuit to be completed, the five years of statue of limitations really never started within the lawsuit.

Having said that, should that lawsuit be dismissed, should you be victorious in a foreclosure defense, or if for some reason the bank on its own just dismisses that law suit, the five year status of limitations will have started from the time that the bank originally brought its first action. The bank decides if they want to re-foreclose. And mind you, we have a lot of situations right now where the banks have begun to re-foreclose on properties that they originally foreclosed on five, six, seven years ago.

And so we are in the trenches with those banks right now, arguing, and fighting that because they spent five or six years in the first lawsuit, and now they’re coming back for a second bite at the apple, it’s too little, too late. So if you have any questions about the five year statue of limitations, you know where to come: Oppenheim law. Roy Oppenheim, thank you, from the trenches. Have a great day.