Legislation aimed at improving resident notification of mediation options to help prevent foreclosure proceedings was approved by the full Assembly on Monday, 71-0-2.
The bill (A-1063) – sponsored by Assemblywomen Mila Jasey (D-Essex, Morris) and Carol Murphy (D-Burlington) — would require mortgage lenders to provide information about the foreclosure mediation program to homeowners when they deliver the notice of intention to foreclose and again when the lender files a foreclosure complaint against a mediation eligible homeowner. The information required would alert the homeowner that obtaining the assistance of a trained foreclosure prevention and default mitigation counselor is a prerequisite to participation in mediation. The notice would also alert the homeowner that they will not be required to pay any fees to participate in mediation.
On the bill, the sponsors released the following statement:
“Timely and transparent notification of a homeowner’s right to foreclosure mediation can make a difference in whether a resident can keep and stay in their home. More homeowners need to take advantage of the mediation program. Foreclosure mediation has been proven to reduce the number of foreclosures. It is in our best interest, as we continue to face a housing crisis in this state, to ensure that all qualified homeowners are informed and encouraged to participate in available mediation programs.”
The bill now heads to the Senate for further review.