Should I Participate in the Foreclosure Mediation Program?
A few years ago, the Washington legislature passed the Foreclosure Fairness Act that, in turn, created the state foreclosure mediation program1. This program provides certain options for homeowners who are facing the threat of an impending foreclosure and gives them a chance to try to keep their home. Though the law does allow these new options for homeowners, anyone facing foreclosure in Washington should contact an experienced real estate attorney in Seattle or Tacoma as soon as possible. The lawyers at the Dickson Law Group can inform you of your rights and options and will work to help you keep your house, so call today at (206) 621-1110 or (253) 572-1000 for help.
What is the Mediation Program?
The program gives homeowners certain rights if they are facing foreclosure. First, they are legally entitled to have a meeting with their lender prior to the foreclosure. If a resolution is not reached during the meeting, the lender may issue a notice of default and then the homeowner will become eligible for mediation proceedings.
In order to be accepted for mediation, you must have an attorney or housing counselor issue a referral and the state will assign you a mediation date. At your mediation proceeding, you and your lender may discuss the following options with the help of a neutral mediator. Such options may include the following:
- Short sale
- Forbearance agreement
- Loan modification2
- Deed in lieu of foreclosure
- Other loss mitigation options
It is highly important to be represented in mediation proceedings by a lawyer who has specific experience with foreclosure cases. An attorney will know how to discuss and negotiate with the lender so that you receive the best option possible in order to keep your home.
While mediation proceedings through the Washington program never guarantee that you will reach an agreement and get to keep your home, it usually does not hurt to try. Additionally, your chances of keeping your most valued possession—your home—through the Washington foreclosure mediation program greatly increase if you have the assistance of an experienced real estate lawyer who is familiar with foreclosure laws in the state of Washington.