Governor likely to extend moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, but those at risk still worry

There’s some new hope Friday for many Floridians facing eviction and foreclosure.

The governor says he probably will extend the moratorium now slated to expire Tuesday.

Terri Gibson is one of the thousands of people relying on food drives.

I’m not working as much. I work a part-time job and it’s hard to make ends meet right now,” she said.

Gibson says she gets social security, but most of it goes toward rent.

My landlord lowered my rent a little bit, so that helps, but yeah, I’m not stable,” she explained.

For those who can’t catch a break, the eviction and foreclosure deadline looms.

While people impacted by COVID-19 are currently protected by the moratorium, landlords can still file evictions. When it comes to civil suits, there’s no right to legal representation.

“Go out and steal something, you get a free attorney. Go through the eviction process or the foreclosure process, which are probably more complicated, a lot more complicated, than most people think and guess what, you have to go it alone,” said attorney Carmen Dellutri.

If you face eviction, she says, but believe you’re protected, explain your hardship to the court.

“Create a question of whether or not you actually owe rent and how much for the judge to decide,” she explained.

To help you through the process, Jacksonville Legal Aid created a step-by-step questionnaire, similar to a do-it-yourself tax prep service. At the end, a response is drafted for you based on your answers.

While Gibson is nervous about what the future holds, she’s optimistic she’ll get through.

But I’m a survivor and God is walking on my side,” she said.

The Eviction Lab, a Princeton University research institute, put together a COVID-19 report card for each state. To see Florida’s report card, click here.

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