Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Announces Homeowner Bill of Rights (VIDEO)

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Joins Legislative Leaders to Unveil California Homeowner Bill of Rights

SACRAMENTO – Attorney General Kamala D. Harris today announced the California Homeowner Bill of Rights designed to protect homeowners from unfair practices by banks and mortgage companies and to help consumers and communities cope with the state’s urgent mortgage and foreclosure crisis.

Joined by Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez, Attorney General Harris announced her sponsorship of six bills designed to guarantee:
– Basic standards of fairness in the mortgage process, including an end to dual-track foreclosures
– Transparency in the mortgage process, including a single point of contact for homeowners
– Community tools to prevent blight after banks foreclose upon homes
– Tenant protections after foreclosures
– Enhanced law enforcement to defend homeowner rights – paid for by fees imposed on banks
– A special grand jury to investigate financial and foreclosure crime

“California communities and families are being devastated by the mortgage and foreclosure crisis. We must ensure the deceptive practices that caused it never happen again,” said Attorney General Harris. “The California Homeowner Bill of Rights will provide basic fairness and transparency for homeowners, and improve the mortgage process for everyone.”

The legislation builds on the California commitment announced by Attorney General Harris earlier this month, which is expected to result in $18 billion of benefits for California homeowners. That agreement included reforms for mortgages owned by the five banks that were signing parties. The California Homeowner Bill of Rights will strengthen those protections, make them permanent, and apply them to all mortgages in the state.

“When I secured the California commitment, I made clear it was only one of many steps I am taking to comprehensively address the mortgage and foreclosure crisis,” Attorney General Harris continued. “I want to thank Senate President pro Tem Steinberg, Assembly Speaker Pérez and all the other lawmakers who are supporting this urgent package of legislation for homeowners.”

“I want to congratulate the Attorney General on the victory she won on behalf of the people of California,” said Speaker John A. Pérez. “Our state has suffered greatly as the result of bad actors in the banking and financial industries, and this settlement holds them accountable as we continue the difficult work of recovering the housing market and stemming the tide of foreclosures, evictions and auctions.”

“Millions of Californians have already lost their homes to foreclosure and the mortgage crisis is far from over,” said Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg. “This landmark settlement negotiated by Attorney General Harris helps thousands of Californians but thousands more need the same help. We need to put these protections into law so that more people can save their homes.”


If passed, the following bills would:


Authors: Assemblymen Mike Eng and Mike Feuer; Senators Mark Leno, Fran Pavley, and Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg
-Require creditors to provide documentation to a borrower that establishes the creditor’s right to foreclose on real property prior to recording a notice of default.
-Require creditors to provide documentary evidence of ownership, the chain of title to real property, and the right to foreclose, at the time of the filing of a notice of default.
-Prohibit creditors from recording a notice of default when a timely-filed application for a loan modification or other loss mitigation measure is pending.
-Prohibit creditors from recording a notice of sale when a timely-filed application for a loan modification or other loss mitigation measure is pending.
-Prohibit creditors from recording a notice of sale while a borrower is in compliance with the terms of a trial loan modification or after another loss mitigation measure has been approved.
-Require creditors to disclose why an application for a loan modification or other loss mitigation measure has been denied.
-Require that notices of foreclosure sales be personally served, including notices of foreclosure sale postponement.
-Provide homeowners with a private right of action in instances in which the requirements set forth in the legislation are not followed


Authors: Assemblywoman Holly Mitchell; Senators Mark DeSaulnier and Fran Pavley
-Require creditors to provide a single point of contact to borrowers in the foreclosure process who will be responsible for providing accurate account and other information related to the foreclosure process and loss mitigation efforts.
-Require creditors to provide a dedicated electronic mail address, facsimile number and mailing address for borrowers to submit information requested as part of a loan modification, short sale or other loss mitigation option.
-Authorize borrowers to challenge the unlawful commencement of a foreclosure process in court.
-Impose a $10,000 civil penalty on the recordation or filing of “robosigned” documents, defined as documents that contain information that was not verified for accuracy by the person or persons signing or swearing to the accuracy of the document or statement.
-Require that certain documents be recorded in a county recorder’s office.


Authors: Assemblywoman Wilmer Carter; Senator Fran Pavley
-Prevent blight enforcement actions from being taken against new purchasers of blighted property for 60 days, provided that repairs are being made to the property.
-Require banks that release liens on foreclosed property to inform local code enforcement agencies of the release so that demolition of blighted property can proceed.
-Increase fines against owners of blighted property from $1,000 per day to $5,000 per day, and allow the imposition of the costs of a receivership over blighted property to be imposed directly against the owner of blighted property.


Authors: Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner; Senator Loni Hancock
-Require purchasers of foreclosed homes to honor the terms of existing leases and give tenants at least 90 days notice before commencing eviction proceedings.


Author: Assemblyman Mike Davis
-Impose a new $25 fee to be paid by servicers upon the recording of a notice of default. The fee would be deposited into a real estate fraud prosecution trust fund that would support the Attorney General’s efforts to deter, investigate and prosecute real estate fraud crimes, including the work of the Mortgage Fraud Strike Force.
-Extend the statute of limitations from one year to four years from the date of discovery for violations of law commonly occurring in connection with foreclosure-related scams, including acting as a real-estate agent without a license and charging up-front fees for loan modification services.


Authors: Assemblyman Mike Davis; Senator Loni Hancock
-Authorize the Attorney General to impanel a special grand jury for the purposes of investigating and indicting multi-jurisdictional financial crimes against the state.

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5 Responses to “Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Announces Homeowner Bill of Rights (VIDEO)”
  1. Collene says:

    CA A/G Kamala D. Harris from could you please make a phone call to MA A/G Martha Coakley to explain to her what it means to be an ETHICAL person and work for the people that put you in office. She is intimidated by the corrupt banks and rewards their actions instead of penalizing them. It is a sad day when you present proof of over $200,000 in payments that were paid to a Pretender Lender and zero was applied to the principal. I could go on and on. I am so disguisted with MA officials and the Judges in the Housing Court. Lawyers have to start taking these case on a contingency in order to allow others like me to make sure Justice is done. We already paid almost $40,000 to an attorney who allowed the Judge to make a judgment not based on the facts of law. The Judges illegal actions did not stop there, he refused all motion filed after the judgment all of which were filed in a timely manner. He was chummy with the defendant (bank) attorney who was nervous during the trial because they could not provide proof of ownership, crediting payments, filing proper guidelines according to the law and that is just a few of over 100 acts of fraud and deceit. We are a loving family of 2 sons one is a Veteran and he returned home from his 2nd tour in Iraq with PTSD and the only home he ever knew for 22 years was illegally sold. Our family has received a life sentence and everything we worked so hard for is gone. We paid our bills we had no charge cars or loans and paid our mortgage on time. It is too involved but I think you get the picture. We were NOT a family that bought a home that was now not worth as much as the loan amount. We were not in arrears. Our bank would refuse a timely payment and then send a reinstatement letter with all kinds of illegal late and legal fees. This happened a couple of times one causing us to lose my husbands Annuity. We were working with a HUD approved Credit Counselor who was an expert witness in court and the Judge ignored the facts of law and his testimony. The bank knew we finally received our note which we were never in possession of and now we could prove that according to UCC 3-305 this was an illegal contract that never came to fruition at infancy and therefore they were committing FRAUD collecting on a loan they were not entitled to. You can’t believe all the proof we have in our possession and it kills me that I don’t have the ability to do this on my own. I am determined to get this story told by a news reporter and expose all the guilty parties involved and hopefully prevent anyone else that finds themselves doing the right thing by paying their bills only to have it all taken from them without any knowledge or notice. Thank you for letting me vent!

  2. Seems to me this was already reqyured among former AIG and others, including President Obamal; maybe the treat of fines this time might work! Finally someone gets it! Too late for me, however I am hoping the very best for all of my homeowner friends/homeowners that own more than one home to finally get some assistance

  3. Bob Sublime says:


    I think that we are witnessing another sick joke against defrauded homeowners.

    Where is the provision to require banks to prove their ownership (original “wet ink” documents) when filing for foreclosure??? That’s all that is needed. This other stuff is only smoke and mirrirs for the banks’ sake.

    Actually, these laws are already on the books, but are not being required by the foreclosure judges.
    All it would take is ONE JUDGE in ONE CASE to follow the law. End of problem.

    The worst of all is that we thought some of these AGs were on our side. Oops, our bad!.
    With regard to political help, we are absolutely alone in this battle.

    Do these bloviating fools really believe the crap that they are spewing??
    Yes, Senator, there is lots more work to do!

    Please check out the

  4. Fed up says:

    God forbid if Florda AG Pam Bondi would do the same.

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