SB 425 - This act allows owner-occupants facing nonjudicial foreclosure under a power of sale to elect to participate in dispute resolution or convert to judicial foreclosure.
Foreclosing parties are required to provide defaulted debtors with a notice of default and intention to foreclose that details the debtor's right to elect to participate in dispute resolution or convert to judicial foreclosure.
The Division of Finance is required to establish a foreclosure dispute resolution program to provide debtors facing foreclosure an opportunity to negotiate with the foreclosing party to agree to avoid foreclosure. If a debtor elects to participate in the program, the division shall open a dispute resolution case and assign a neutral party to oversee the case and subsequently submit reports detailing the outcome of the case. All foreclosures are stayed during the process but may resume if the parties negotiate in good faith after complying with the rules of the process and fail to reach an agreement. A fine of not more than $1,500 may be imposed on either party for unjustified noncompliance as determined by the neutral party.
Debtors may convert a nonjudicial to a judicial foreclosure by filing a petition evidencing their intent to do so, with the circuit court where the property is situated.
Unlawful foreclosure practices are established including holding a flawed public sales, delaying delivery of records, completing nonjudicial foreclosure during short sale escrows or during loan modification negotiations. A party that violates any of the new requirements set forth in the act are deemed to have committed an unlawful merchandising practice under Chapter 407.
This act is identical to SB 670 (2012), HB 1611 (2012), and SB 336 (2013).