For Immediate Release - May 13, 2013

AG Coakley Statement on Report Showing ‘Exceptional’ Reduction in Foreclosures in Massachusetts

The Warren Group Reports 82 Percent Drop in Foreclosure Petitions from Last Year

BOSTON – Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley today issued the following statement in response to a study from The Warren Group reporting a significant decline in Massachusetts foreclosures during the month of March, and crediting the state’s new loan modification law as one of the major reasons for that reduction:

“The reduction in foreclosures is good news for Massachusetts’ homeowners and our path to economic recovery, but we shouldn’t be declaring ‘mission accomplished’ just yet. Massachusetts groundbreaking foreclosure prevention initiatives, including the new loan modification statute and our first-in-the-nation HomeCorps program, are having an impact. But there are thousands of homeowners still struggling to avoid unnecessary foreclosures, and that work must continue before declaring victory over the foreclosure crisis.”

BACKGROUND:

Since taking office in January 2007, combating the foreclosure crisis has remained a priority of AG Coakley’s administration by seeking accountability through litigation, regulation and other advocacy. 

In August 2012, Governor Deval Patrick signed “An Act Preventing Unlawful and Unnecessary Foreclosures,” a law sponsored by AG Coakley along with co-sponsors Senator Karen Spilka, and Representative Steven M. Walsh. The bill was enacted through the Joint Committee on Financial Services under the leadership of Committee Co-Chairmen Senator Anthony Petruccelli and Representative Michael Costello.

The new law is designed to prevent unnecessary foreclosures by mandating loan modifications when they make economic sense, and demonstrates again the Commonwealth's commitment to protecting homeowners and stabilizing the housing market.

On February 9, 2012, AG Coakley announced a $25 billion nationwide state-federal settlement over unlawful foreclosures, including robo-signing of documents, will bring an estimated $318 million in assistance to Massachusetts borrowers. In April 2012, AG Coakley launched HomeCorps, a groundbreaking initiative to prevent unnecessary foreclosures by increasing the number of loan modification specialists available to help distressed borrowers and providing a wide range of grant opportunities aimed at easing the foreclosure crisis in Massachusetts. To date the AG’s Office has facilitated more than 1,550 permanent modifications for homeowners, and has achieved move than $24 million in principal reduction relief.

Homeowners that are facing foreclosure should call the HomeCorps Hotline at (617) 573-5333 to receive assistance.

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