What is expected of the Parties:
As a distressed homeowner, we understand that you are worried, frustrated, and uncertain. We understand you may feel and express strong emotions–that is expected. We request that you participate in this collaborative process, where the focus of the conversation will be on the present situation and future agreements. We strongly suggest you find an advocate– HUD certified housing counselor or legal representation– to support you during the whole process. We expect all parties to use common courtesy and ask you to understand that the bank attorney and bank representative on the phone are not personally responsible for the last several months (or years) of the lack of resolution in your situation. In preparation for the mediation, please review your documents and the banks documents with your advocate. Please arrive willing to ask plenty of questions, explore realistic options for you, share all pertinent information, and follow through on any agreements that are reached during mediation.
We expect that you will be prepared and have reviewed all realistic options with your client before mediation according to the FFA timeline. We expect common courtesy and professionalism in all mediations. This is about what’s best for the borrower. We expect that any agreements in mediation will be followed through in a timely manner and that you will continue to work with your client to help them be timely, organized, and prepared.
Beneficiary Representatives and Advocates:
We understand that you do multiple mediations, yet we request you to treat each mediation as unique since this may be the first time the borrower has experienced mediation. You represent the beneficiary on the phone, therefore we expect that you will be attentive to the borrower’s story and acknowledge their feelings of frustration in the room. Your role is to help guide the discussion into the future of what are the possible options, clearly explain them and maintain a collaborative demeanor. We request all parties to use common courtesy and professionalism. Please consider how you deliver new information to the borrower – especially when you know it will be hard for the borrower to accept. For success in this process, It is critical that you and your client adhere to all timelines and agreements.
How much time will it take?
Please set aside three (3) hours for this mediation session. If there is more work to be done, then a second session may become necessary. New fees will apply to a second session.
Where will the Mediation Take Place?
Mediations should be held in a neutral location such as the mediator’s office. Each party may or may not have their own private room, nevertheless will always have the ability to have private conversations with their advocate or legal representative.
The mediation is set in the county in which the distressed property resides. While you might be asked to sign a waiver allowing your case to move to a different county, you have the right to refuse to travel out of county for your mediation. Simply notify Dept. of Commerce that you intend to participate in the mediation process and want the mediation to happen in your county.
How Much Does it Cost?
The mediation fees are set by the Foreclosure Fairness Act were deliberately below market rate so that mediation can be accessible for everyone. The actual cost of this mediation is much higher, yet it is recognized that foreclosure mediation is a community need and that our professional mediators do a public service.
What does my payment cover?
- Initial outreach to connect parties directly and establish points of contact; connect parties with additional resources in the community
- Find mutual dates/times for the mediation
- Facilitate document exchanges; help clarify additional requirements
- Help parties keep the established deadlines
- Hold pre-session conference calls/check-in
- Help parties prepare on how they will share new information at the mediation
- Facilitate a productive face-to-face conversation of the parties at the mediation
- Help parties to understand the next steps and each parties’ responsibilities
- Monitor compliance of mutual agreements/deadlines from the mediation
- Submit Mediation Certification that fairly and impartially reflects the outcome of the mediation process.
- Evaluation and continual improvement of our foreclosure mediation services.
CDR Foreclosure Fee Policy
Mediation Service fees are $200 per party for scheduling, document review, conducting a mediation session, and issuing a certificate to Commerce. Mediation fees are non-refundable once a mediation session is scheduled, or preparation has started. Mediations lasting more than three (3) hours will be charged at $130 for an additional hour. If a second session is requested a $200 fee per party will be due prior to scheduling the second session.
Reschedule fees: When it is necessary to reschedule a foreclosure mediation, an agreement to extend the date for mediation must be agreed upon by both parties.
- $100.00 per party reschedule fee is due for sessions cancelled within 30 days of the scheduled mediation date.
- $200.00 per party reschedule fee is due for sessions cancelled 72 hours or less of the scheduled mediation date.
Cancellation fee: All foreclosure mediation fees are non- refundable.
Rescheduling Decision: The mediator has discretion in the scheduling decision and requires the consent of both parties to extend beyond the 70 day timeline set in statute. Mediators may choose to hold the mediation as scheduled and this decision is based on, but not limited to, the following criteria:
- length of time the case has been opened,
- change of circumstances, number of reschedules,
- communication difficulties, or
- if there is a need for clarification between the parties.