Author Archives: dvenables

Recent Oregon Foreclosure Moratorium Developments

On June 1, 2021, Governor Kate Brown signed into law Oregon’s most recent COVID-19 pandemic-related foreclosure moratorium, HB 2009. Although similar to last year’s statewide moratorium that expired at the end of last year, Oregon’s most recent moratorium is limited to only residential properties, staying foreclosures and retroactively voiding all such non-judicial foreclosure sales and sheriff’s execution sales that were conducted this year.

In addition to the ban on foreclosures, HB 2009 also provides several other notable protections for borrowers during the emergency period, which began at the beginning of this year. First, if a borrower notifies the lender that the borrower cannot make a payment because of lost income from the COVID-19 pandemic, the lender cannot treat the borrower’s non-payment of any amount due to the lender during the period as a default. After such notification and, unless otherwise agreed by lender and borrower, the lender must defer collecting payment and must permit the borrower to pay the amount deferred during the emergency period to the loan’s maturity date. Further, once the borrower gives that notice to the lender, a lender may not:

(A) Impose charges, fees, penalties, attorney fees or other amounts that the lender might have otherwise imposed or collected from a borrower for failing to make payment;

(B) Impose a default rate of interest that the lender might have imposed or collected from a borrower for failing to pay an amount otherwise due during the emergency period;

(C) Treat the borrower’s failure pay any amount due during the period as an ineligibility for a foreclosure avoidance measure; or

(D) Require or charge for an inspection, appraisal or broker opinion of value during the emergency period.

The new law also creates a private right of action for borrowers to recover damages for an ascertainable loss of money or property due to the prohibited actions of a lender or trustee and allows the borrower to recover attorney’s fees and costs as well. A lender is not liable for damages for acts taken before the lender receives the lost income notice from the borrower.

The protections of HB 2009 were initially set to expire on June 30, 2021, however, the law authorized the Governor to extend the mortgage foreclosure moratorium period for two successive three-month periods by executive order. On June 11, 2021, Governor Brown announced that she had extended the moratorium for that first three-month period, until September 30, 2021, and, if the Governor intends to extend the moratorium again, the Governor must do so by August 16, 2021.

By David Venables

New CFPB Report: Student Loan Debt of Older Consumers Quadrupled Over Past Decade

Earlier this month, the CFPB’s Office for Older Americans and Office for Students and Young Consumers released its “Snapshot of Older Consumers and Student Loan Debt” which revealed a troubling statistic – the number of consumers age 60 and older with student loan debt has quadrupled over the last decade in the United States. In 2015 alone, older consumers owed an estimated $66.7 billion in student loans and consumers age 60 and older are the fastest growing age-segment of the student loan market.

The CFPB noted that this trend is not only the result of borrowers carrying their own student debt later into life but a growing number of parents and grandparents are financing their children’s and grandchildren’s college education, taking out the loans directly or co-signing on a loan with the student as the primary borrower.

Older borrowers entering retirement with student loan debt face a number of challenges that may contribute to their inability to repay their student loans or meet their responsibility for their children’s loans. Unlike younger borrowers, who generally have more time in the workforce to increase their income and pay off the debts, older consumers typically experience a decrease in income as they age.  In addition, some older consumers face other challenges, such as an increased incidence of physical and cognitive impairments associated with aging. These challenges may limit the ability to remain in the work force and may be associated with a decline in income.

The CFPB Report can be found below:
Snapshot of older consumers and student loan debt

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Expands Foreclosure Protections for Borrowers

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Expands Foreclosure Protections for Borrowers

On August 4, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) finalized new measures to ensure that homeowners and struggling borrowers are treated fairly by mortgage servicers, including:

  • Requiring servicers to provide certain borrowers with foreclosure protections more than once over the life of the loan,
  • Expanding consumer protections to surviving family members and other homeowners,
  • Providing more information to borrowers in bankruptcy,
  • Requiring servicers to notify borrowers when loss mitigation applications are complete,
  • Protecting struggling borrowers during servicing transfers,
  • Clarifying servicers’ obligations to avoid dual-tracking and prevent wrongful foreclosures, and
  • Clarifying when a borrower becomes delinquent.

The CFPB’s press release and link to rules is here.