Sunday, April 10, 2011

End of Session -Three Consumer Bills Still Need Support

Monday, April 11th is the last day of the Maryland General Assembly's session. Many important consumer bills that MCRC has fought for this year are on track to pass and become law. However, the fate of several strong consumer bills will be decided between 8:00 am and midnight on Monday.

Please call your Senators and Delegates to Urge Support of the Following Bills. Your calls and emails may make the difference between passage and failure.

The three pieces of legislation that remain uncertain are:

  • House Bill 728-Foreclosure Mediation. The bill will improve Governor O'Malley's innovative mediation program which allows homeowners facing foreclosure to meet with servicers to try to work out a loan modification or some other positive outcome. The bill will make the materials homeowners receive more accessible and easily understood and will increase the time homeowners have to opt-in to the program from 15-30 days. This expanded opt-in time is important because many home-owners need assistance preparing their documents for the mediation and this provides them time to do it themselves or make an appointment with a housing counselor who can assist them. The bill passed out of Senate Judicial Proceedings on Saturday. It must be voted on by the entire Senate tomorrow.
  • House Bill 729-Class Action Waiver Unenforceability. This bill will protect consumers' and workers' right to join a class action lawsuit. Many consumer and employment contracts now contain a class action waiver which prohibits an individual from joining a class action lawsuit before dispute even arises. This prohibition limits an individual's ability to unite with other people who've had the same experience to seek justice. HB 729 passed out of Senate Judicial Proceedings on Saturday. It must be voted on by the entire Senate tomorrow.
  • House Bill 1022-Debt Settlement. The House version of the debt settlement bill extends the FTC advance fee ban to other types of transactions and requires debt settlement companies to register with the Commissioner of Financial Regulation and to report upon their performance. After collecting three years of data, the Commissioner of Financial Regulation and Consumer Protection Division of the Attorney General's Office will make recommendations regarding licensing and fee caps. HB 1022 must be voted on by the Senate and House tomorrow.

    ____________________________________________

    Subscribe to MCRC blog updates via email; click here.

No comments:

Post a Comment