$1 million grant to put more teeth into enforcing California’s ‘Homeowner Bill of Rights’

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CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY GENERAL – Attorney General Kamala D. Harris recently announced a $1 million California Homeowner Bill of Rights (HBOR) implementation grant to The National Housing Law Project.

This grant will maximize consumer benefits from the HBOR, while minimizing abuses of the law, by providing training to California consumer and housing attorneys from both private and non-profit firms.

The California HBOR is a set of landmark laws that extend key mortgage and foreclosure protections to California homeowners and borrowers.

The package of laws, effective Jan. 1, 2013, restrict dual-track foreclosures, guarantee struggling homeowners a reliable point of contact at their lender, impose civil penalties on fraudulently signed mortgage documents and require loan servicers to document their right to foreclose.

“Californians were hit hard by the mortgage crisis and many people are still struggling to stay in their homes,” said Attorney General Harris

“The California Homeowner Bill of Rights gives borrowers more opportunities to stay in their homes, and this grant will help make sure the law is applied across the state and that everyone gets the protection they are entitled to,” added the champion for consumer rights.

The National Housing Law Project (NHLP) will partner with Western Center on Law and Poverty, National Consumer Law Center and Tenants Together to implement this grant.

NHLP seeks to advance housing justice by advocating for affordable housing, litigating to uphold homeowners’ and tenants’ rights and offering technical assistance to legal aid attorneys who work with low-income families.

The National Housing Law Project and its partners will use the grant to:

Provide high-quality, on-site trainings and webinars to some 800 consumer and housing attorneys on how to maximize the HBOR’s protections.
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Provide support in cases that raise important legal issues or have potential for broad impact.

Create a library of litigation materials to help attorneys maximize the HBOR’s benefits.

Produce a report that analyzes the HBOR’s statewide impact and identifies compliance problems.

Funds provided through this grant were secured by Attorney General Harris through California’s $18 billion share of the National Mortgage Settlement.

California’s State Bar has partnered with the Attorney General’s Office to administer the grant and monitor compliance. The National Housing Law Project will provide quarterly financial and program reports to the State Bar and the Attorney General’s Office.

Source: “Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Announces $1 Million Grant to Benefit California Homeowners”

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