Monday, January 25, 2010

O'Malley agenday includes foreclosure mediation

Daily Record: Homeowners would be able to request face-to-face meetings with their lenders to find alternatives to foreclosure under a proposal announced Monday as part of Gov. Martin O’Malley’s legislative agenda. The proposal would add a $100 fee for each foreclosure filed, a cost that lenders would not be allowed to pass on to borrowers. -- read more

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

MCRC testifies in favor of HB 79

To close a loophole that payday lenders have found in Maryland law. Read details here.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Showdown over Consumer Financial Protection Agency

Huffington Post: The battle in the Senate over a proposed consumer financial protection agency is the final show-down between banks and American families, bailout watchdog Elizabeth Warren wrote to supporters Monday night. -- read more

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Friday, January 15, 2010

The FTC does its own collecting on debt chasers

The Federal Trade Commission has just wrapped up a case that should send shivers down the spines of managers working in the debt-collection industry. You know, the same shivers felt by many consumers when they receive calls from intimidating bill collectors. --read more

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Court tossing out thousands of debt-collection suits


Tens of thousands of Maryland debt-collection lawsuits will be dismissed because the massive collections firm that brought them appears to be collapsing. -- full story

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MCRC board member and awardee in Baltimore Sun story

Read about MCRC board member Phillip Robinson and Karl-Henri Gauvin, who was MCRC's 2009 Volunteer of the Year:
Jamie Smith Hopkins reports: Borrowers struggling to save their homes from foreclosure desperately need legal help, but that's often when they're least able to afford it.

In Maryland, though, nearly 1,000 attorneys are ready to assist for free. -- full story

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Monday, January 11, 2010

Sun says MAIF should be priority in 2010

Baltimore Sun editorial:
Poor people should be able to pay for auto insurance on installment without being charged outrageously high fees. A law to allow the state's Maryland Automobile Insurance Fund to compete against premium finance companies would solve the problem. -- read full piece

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Sunday, January 3, 2010

Debt settlement needs to be regulated

Los Angeles Times:
Can you imagine getting a job at which your boss tells you that you'll get your paycheck every two weeks whether or not you show up? And performance doesn't matter. Everything's fine as long as you merely say say you'll do the work.

Most of us would laugh at such a preposterous idea -- or ask where we could sign up. But this scenario is business-as-usual at so-called debt settlement companies -- the ones that advertise during late-night television and on urban radio. In California, hundreds of these companies get paid every year by desperate consumers for simply claiming they will reduce or eliminate the consumers' burdensome debts. They make no guarantees, but they make lots of money. -- read more

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