Kamala Harris, the Attorney General of California, has been one of the leading advocates for many attempts to get the housing industry in California back on the right track.
Harris has long made combating mortgage fraud one of the centerpieces of her time in office. And now it appears as though she’s willing to take the next steps in the process – the California Homeowner Bill of Rights.
Harris is lobbying state lawmakers to pass a bundle of mortgage-protection bills, currently undergoing tests in legislative committees in Sacramento. These bills would give homeowners more security with their mortgages while allowing the AG’s office to have fewer restrictions when looking into financial crimes.
The new 11-bill bundle will ban those actions that contributed to the housing crisis and apply to all mortgage lenders.
“A lot of the reform… was agreed to by the banks in the national foreclosure settlement, but it only has a life of three years,” Harris explained. “Let’s not go back to the days of robo-signing… Let’s learn from our mistakes.”
In an obvious move, lenders are opposing many of the important elements of the bills, including the sections concerning homeowners’ due process rights, the expansion of the national settlement for all California homeowners and, perhaps most importantly, giving homeowners the right to sue banks if they feel they have been wronged.
Harris’ defense is simple – if lenders do everything properly, they won’t have anything to worry about.
The 11 bills contain components of six separate proposals, five of which are duplicated in Assembly and Senate bills.
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