Maine CU league foreclosure bill amendment validated by judiciary committee

May 20, 2015

AUGUSTA, Maine (5/20/15)--An amendment crafted by the Maine Credit Union League to a proposed foreclosure bill was unanimously adopted by the Legislature’s Judiciary Committee this week, an occasion the committee’s chair, Rep. Barry Hobbins (D-Saco), said “doesn’t happen very often.”

The amendment to L.D. 846--replacing the bill’s original language--adopts all existing foreclosure law, including that related to mediation and the redemption period, but it also speeds up the foreclosure process in appropriate places, according to the league.

“This is very good news for Maine’s credit unions,” said league President/CEO John Murphy.  

Murphy added that the league’s success on this the was a team effort, though he specifically recognized Ben Marcus, the league’s legislative counsel, who played a key role in providing testimony before the committee at a public hearing and drafting the final language of the amendment.

“This was a difficult process that involved multiple meetings, changes and discussions during the past few months,” Murphy said. “We have been working on this since the beginning of the session.”

Key provisions of the amendment passed by the Judiciary Committee:

  • All existing law is adopted, including the required certifications of the complaint to demonstrate that the lender has provided the 35-day notice to cure; that the lender is the holder of the mortgage note; the mediation process; and the redemption period following judgment;
  • The same form is used at the outset of the case to allow the consumer to easily answer the complaints and choose mediation;
  • When a consumer answers a complaint, the mediation proceeds in the same manner it does currently; and
  • An expedited trial is available in two cases: if the consumer opts in to the expedited process following mediation, or if the consumer has defaulted.

The bill now travels to the Maine House and Senate for votes.