The Massachusetts Joint Committee on Financial Services has approved text for an omnibus bill on foreclosures (H1219) which lacks critical provisions recommended by lawyers who deal with victims of predatory lending. Mandatory mediation (S673/H1355) and preventing unnecessary vacancies (S767/H493), do not appear in the new text:
In the 20 states/cities where it is required, mandatory mediation reduces foreclosures by half. If foreclosed homeowners are allowed to stay on as tenants of bank, neighborhoods are spared the blight of long term vacancies. The crisis is not over. Without legal changes, Massachusetts can expect another 100,000 foreclosures.
Representatives of Greater Boston Legal Service and Harvard Law Legal Aid, who helped draft the MAAPL-recommended legislation, express concern that H1219 places a heavier burden on borrowers.
Immediate phone calls to your state representative and senator (and other key committee members with whom you may have contact) are needed. See maapl.info for more information.