New York AG Presses for Passage of Two Foreclosure Bills

New York AG Presses for Passage of Two Foreclosure Bills

05/30/2013 BY: ESTHER CHO

New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman recently brought attention to two foreclosure bills meant to provide greater protection to homeowners in the state.

The Certificate of Merit bill (A. 5582) and the Foreclosure Fraud Prevention Act (A.7395) both passed the New York State Assembly last week. Before they make their way to the New York State Senate, Schneiderman urged support for the bills.

The Certificate of Merit gives homeowners who are facing foreclosure the chance to participate in a court-supervised mediation session with their bank. This way homeowners can try to negotiate a solution outside of foreclosure rather than lose their home or remain in legal foreclosure limbo in a state known for drawn-out foreclosure timelines.

The Foreclosure Fraud Prevention Act would impose criminal penalties on mortgage lenders, servicers, and their agents if they intentionally practice fraudulent or deceptive conduct when preparing, executing, or filing foreclosure documents. Schneiderman proposed the bill, which is being sponsored by Sen. Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester).

“On Long Island and all across New York State, wrongful foreclosure and the growing ‘shadow docket’ are preventing thousands of families from even getting a chance to keep their homes,” said Schneiderman in a release. “Both the ‘Certificate of Merit’ bill and the Foreclosure Fraud Prevention Act address these critical problems by proposing common-sense reforms to keep homeowners out of the legal limbo and ensure their rights are honored. The Assembly has already acted to empower hardworking New Yorkers fighting against foreclosure. It is now time for the Senate to do the same.”

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