Mortgage Foreclosure Newsletter
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January 2017
 
Happy New Year and hopefully it will be one for those struggling with Mortgage Foreclosure. When we started this Project, we never thought we would still be doing it more than five years later. Nevertheless, our neighbors and friends still need our help.
 
If you have not visited our interactive web site, either through the NCBA portal or Nassaubarhelps.com, please do, as it will answer many of your general questions. Have you seen our free clinic signs at Stop and Shop in Hempstead or Baldwin? Or seen our full ads on the rear of Nassau Buses? Please let us know. We need feedback.
 
If you wish to volunteer, please email to: mortgageforeclosure@nassaubar.org or to gberg@nassaubar.org. Last year the Nassau County Bar Association members volunteered more than 1800 hours giving advice and representing homeowners at Mandatory Conferences.
 
Gale D. Berg
Director of Pro Bono Attorney Activities
Latest News on Mortgage Foreclosure
New Legislation in NYS passed in the last days of the session are effective.
As announced in our November Newsletter, new legislation is now in effect, which includes changes to the time defendants have to submit an answer, improvements to the Notices to enable homeowners to have a better understanding of their meaning; and a property maintenance provision for the financial institution/servicer including an expedited process for vacant and abandoned properties.
 
*Notes regarding new Nassau Settlement Conference procedure:
1 – New Orders have been issued for Mandatory Settlement Conferences going forward. There are different Orders for first time conferences (“Intake Form”) and for returning conferences (“Status Form”). These forms are available at our website for anyone who would like to take a look. Plaintiffs and Defendants will be asked to sign in on the Order when they check in to the part.
2 – The Court Referees will now explain to defendants that thirty additional days will be given to file an Answer to the Summons and Complaint from the date of the initial conference. The Referees will hand a Pro Se Answer form with instructions along with a Consumer Bill of Rights for foreclosure defendants.
3 – New instructions for Plaintiffs include requiring them to come prepared with certain information, including the note and mortgage as well as modification eligibility and restrictions have been issued.
4.- In addition the laws are translated into six languages and are posted on the DFS website.
 
MAP Update
The Mortgage Assistance Program (MAP) is returning in 2017. First, those who were approved for prior MAP funding but never finalized the process will be re-evaluated and provided funds if they are still in a position where MAP would make the difference between retaining and liquidating the property. We continue to await information regarding application launch dates and will update accordingly.
 
End of HAMP
Except for FHA loans and select other borrowers, the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) expired on at the end of December 2016. HAMP fell short of its goals, modifying 1.6 million loans out of a projected 4 million. Approximately half a million of these modified loans has been defaulted on, and over 800,000 trial modification plans failed to turn into permanent modifications.
 
Bank Days
Specific Thursdays and Fridays are being set aside to a specific bank to address their homeowners in court. If you would like to know which financial institutions and their days you can either call the Mortgage Foreclosure Part of Supreme Court or Tiffany Nicolas at the NCBA.
 
Reverse Mortgage Lenders Penalized
Three national companies that originate home equity conversion mortgages were penalized by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for alleged deceptive advertising practices. They are American Advisors Group, Reverse Mortgage Solutions and Aegean Financial. If you have a connection to any of these and need help, please come to one of our clinics. We are continuing to gather any Financial Freedom Reverse Mortgage (CIT) Issues.
 
SuperStorm Sandy Households Needing Engery Assistance
 
New York State is accepting applications for Home Energy Assistance. The program will give low/moderate income households funding to receive heat. In addition, Emergency funding started January 3, 2017 for those at risk of losing heat.The Center for NYC Neighborhoods has an online resource for homeowners struggling to make sense of flood insurance called “Weathering the Storm.” It is interactive.
 
Open House For All Issues To Be Held Twice a Year
 
Our Open Houses have been so successful that we will be holding them twice a year. Once in the Fall and again in the Spring. Our next OPEN HOUSE will be on June 26, 2017. Questions concerning: matrimonial or family law, labor, bankruptcy and senior issues, can be addressed. Approximately 137 individuals were able to receive Answers to their questions at our October Open House. Watch for more details in upcoming Newsletters or call NCBA.
 
UPCOMING
 
Mortgage Foreclosure SuperStorm Sandy Clinic

 
April7
* All clinics are Mondays
3-5 p.m. and interpreting provided when calling to register
 
WHO WE ARE
 
Founded in 1899, the Nassau County Bar Association consists of private and public attorneys, judges, legal educators and law students who demonstrate their commitment to the community. The NCBA Mortgage Foreclosure SuperStorm Sandy Project is one of those commitments. It provides free legal clinics as well as representation at mandatory foreclosure conferences in Supreme Court.
 
DID YOU KNOW?
 
The Mortgage Foreclosure Mandatory Conferences have a Pro Bono Attorney at ALL conferences ready to help if asked. Conferences are held Monday through Wednesday at 9:00 am, and 2:00 pm.
 
COMMENTARY
 
Everyone was informative aqnd amazing!!I came in lost and very nervous. I left calm and with hope.
This was the comment recently received from a participant at our recent clinic. "...You answered all my questions, eased my fears, and offered even more assistance and opportunities to help me. Thanks for the education and patience!"
 
NOTE
 
Look for our new interactive webpages at www.nassaubar.org and press Mortgage Foreclosure on the left column
 
Deed Theft
 
Always be on the LOOKOUT FOR DEED theft and please report it to us and to the AG’s office! Thank you!
 
OFFICE  
Nassau County Bar Association
15th & West Streets
Mineola, NY 11501
Tel: (516)747-4070
 
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Funded through the New York State Attorney General Homeownership Protection Program
 
Volunteer
 
Please feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone who you think will be interested or helpful to those who need this information.
 
If you would like more information on volunteer opportunities at NCBA, sign up to receive the latest information by sending an email to: mortgageforeclosure
@nassaubar.org
, attention: Greg Fishkin, Settlement Conference Coordinator.
 

This communication provides general information only. This is not legal advice. You can only obtain legal advice from a lawyer. The information presented at this site should not be construed as the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.


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