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Posted at 12:18 PM ET, 05/20/2010

O'Malley signs bill to help homeowners

By Washington Post editors

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) signed a bill Thursday that creates a statewide foreclosure mediation program designed to help beleaguered homeowners stay in their homes.

The bill gives homeowners the legal right to mediation with their lender during foreclosure proceedings.

“With my signature today, we are empowering our fellow Marylanders, putting them on a more equal footing with mortgage companies that too often can’t be bothered to pick up the phone before beginning a foreclosure proceeding,” O’Malley said in a statement. “This legislation will help keep more Marylanders in the homes they worked hard to purchase.”

Under the bill, the lender is required to send an application for a loan-modification or loss-mitigation program to the homeowner at least 45 days before a foreclosure action is filed in court. The bill requires the lender to pay a $300 fee for a foreclosure filing. The homeowner then has 15 days after receiving the lender’s final loss-mitigation affidavit to request a foreclosure mediation. The request must be sent to the Circuit Court, along with a $50 fee.

-- Ovetta Wiggins

By Washington Post editors  | May 20, 2010; 12:18 PM ET
Categories:  Maryland  | Tags:  Foreclosure, Martin O'Malley, O'Malley, homeowners  
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Unintended Consequences 101. This is a great headline grabber, but ultimately costly for homeowners, especially those with marginal credit who will be effectively shut out of the market for home loans.

Posted by: scatem | May 20, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

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