The Palm Beach Post is reporting that Florida’s required foreclosure mediation program is not having much success. Only a mere 6 percent of foreclosure matters are being resolved at the negotiation table.
Seven of the state’s 20 circuit courts are included the report, but lawyers state there is enough evidence to show the program is struggling. Between March and June, 13, 417 cases were referred to mediation. However, only 768 ended with the borrower and banking coming to an agreement. An “agreement” included the homeowner walking away from the property, deed in lieu of foreclosure, short sale or a loan modification.
Our Miami foreclosure defense lawyers have assisted many homeowners in buying enough time to reach the solution that is right for them. There are many alternatives to foreclosure, and often times it just takes proper planning to properly navigate against the potential pitfalls. Help is often available to those who seek it.
As for the mediation program, a major hurdle for theprogram is the fact that many homeowners are difficult to contact. 44 percent of homeowners were reached in cases referred to mediation, and 38 percent attended a session. Of those who actually attended mediation, 34 percent walked away with some sort of resolution.
A big question regarding the program is how success should be measured. If it is measured in terms of providing financial relief to borrowers, then it may be considered a failure. On the other hand, it may be considered a partial success if it is measured in terms of how it has helped cases move forward.
Some state its too early to judge whether the program has been a success and the more time is needed to properly evaluate it. Even though the numbers show few have been able come to an agreement, to date, the requirement that all parties attend mediation is important because it affords the homeowner with an opportunity to sit down and have a “face to face” meeting with the bank and tell their story. If it doesn’t work out, at least they know they got their shot.
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