Maryland foreclosure law experienced a few changes at the tail end of 2017, and another law affecting the foreclosure process will go into effect in 2018.
The Fast Track Foreclosure Process
One of the biggest changes to Maryland law over the course of 2017 went into effect at the end of the year. The Fast Track Foreclosure bill was proposed in response to the significant number of vacant and abandoned properties throughout the state, and designed to speed up the slow foreclosure process.
The bill, now known as Section 7-105.14 (SB 1033 HB 702), allows parties to petition a Circuit Court for an order to immediately start a foreclosure, instead of needing to send pre-foreclosure notices and participate in an opt-in mediation program through the state.
To determine if a property is considered vacant and abandoned, any of the following can be taken into consideration:
Broken or boarded windows and doors
Hazardous materials, debris and trash accumulated inside of the building
Front or back doors are broken, unhinged or not locked
No personal items inside of the home
The property is a hub of criminal conduct or used for loitering and vandalism
A written statement from the homeowner that says they intend to abandon the property
At least 2 written citations from the city or county for health and safety
The property has been condemned
If the Circuit Court determines that the property is abandoned, they can immediately file a Foreclosure Order to Docket and advise the owner that they have 20 days to challenge the process.
A New Registration Component Goes Into Effect October 1, 2018
Another bill, HB 1048, adds a registration step to the foreclosure process. This new law requires every foreclosed property to be registered within 7 days with the Department of Labor and Licensing Regulation. When registering, the servicer of the property will need to provide contact information for the party that will be “authorized to manage and maintain the Property before the foreclosure sale.”
Lebovitz Law Can Handle Your Foreclosure
Whether you are a homeowner facing foreclosure or involved in foreclosure proceedings in another way, Lebovitz Law has years of experience representing clients in the foreclosure process. Contact us today.