The foreclosure crisis is finally getting some attention. Several South Carolina legislators, including Senator Mike Rose who represents Dorchester County and parts of Charleston County, held a public forum this week at the Longshoreman’s Hall here in Charleston. Charleston Senator Robert Ford also participated.
The foreclosure crisis hearings are being held around the state. (Click here for information from the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee.)
What’s this mean?
This is a very positive development. It means the foreclosure crisis is now on the South Carolina legislature’s radar screen. Senator Mike Rose made that clear and discussed how he has been contacted by numerous constituents about how they have been poorly and unfairly treated by their mortgage lenders.
Among those who spoke was Moncks Corner resident Linda Gibbs. Live 5 news also interviewed her, and you can listen to her interview by clicking here. Linda’s story is not unique, and that stack of papers you see on her table is not unique, either. I see clients regularly who lenders refuse to deal with in good faith. Paperwork is lost, resubmitted, and lost again. And again. And again. (What do they do with all that paper? Where is it?)
To assist homeowners, Senator Mike Rose and others (27 others!) have sponsored Senate Bill 702 and are asking for comments on the bill. South Carolina law can’t trump federal law, but it certainly can address issues in the judicial foreclosure process which will help slow down the “rocket docket” of foreclosures. This, in turn, should give homeowners and their attorneys more ammunition with which to fight foreclosure.
What should I do?
Call your state senators and house representatives. Tell them you support Senate bill 702 as well as anything else they can to do make sure home owners are treated fairly in our courts. Justice shouldn’t be blind; it should be impartial. And for far too long the system has acted as a “rubber stamp” on foreclosures turning a blind eye to home owner’s pleas for common sense and fairness. This has to end. There’s more to the foreclosure crisis than the four magic words, “borrower is in default.” It’s in the best interests of not just home owners, but also the investors of these mortgages, that foreclosure be averted when it can be.
In my next post, I’ll write about SC Mortgage Help (www.scmortgagehelp.com) and how this new program is helping home owners avoid foreclosure.