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Supreme Court delays effective date of foreclosure rules to May 1

The Illinois Supreme Court has delayed the effective date of new rules aimed at mitigating uncertainty in the foreclosure process.

The Supreme Court is delaying the effective date to give additional time to the Special Committee which drafted the rules to determine how the rules would be applied to cases currently pending, or if they would apply only to new cases.

New Supreme Court Rule 113 and new Supreme Court Rule 114 initially were to go into effect on Friday March 1. In an Order filed Thursday, the Supreme Court delayed the effective date to May 1.

Posted on February 28, 2013 by Chris Bonjean
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Member Comments (5)

I work almost exclusively in the foreclosure area. For the most part, homeowners cannot save the homes for financial reasons. But, I have tried to help numerous defendants, Pro Bono, and found that the mediation process is basically worthless. Until they give the mediators power to force banks that are baulky to give worthy homeowners a modification, this is just more wasted time spent at the taxpayers cost.

Agreed. In our experience, the banks have too often treated mediation as a mere "speed bump" on the road to a foreclosure judgment.

My clients have not had much success with short sales or loan modifications, either. The banks are giving lip service to this and are making decisions that would appear to be contrary to prudent business decisions. The suggestion I have heard is that the banks are getting TARP money. Can anyone address that issue.

Bob Wagner

I was a complete cynic when the mediation process began in Cook County, (I just figured they were going to paraphrase the Anti-Drug Commercials and "Just Say, 'No'") but I do have to say that it has met with some good success. I have had clients receive modifications before we even start mediation - just based on the documents submitted. About one-third of our cases get a modification, about one-third decide to use a method of "graceful exit" and about one-third are just as unyielding as before we went into mediation. Despite my skepticism, I believe there is some value to mediation. I am also aware of Chicago Volunteer Legal Services being successful bringing Motions for Failure to Mediate in Good Faith, which judges are actually viewing with some validity, so they may be only baby ones - but the Mediators have some "teeth'. .

Although it is not perfect, it at least is not a complete waste either. I am pretty sure I am not alone in this opinion.

I agree heartily with Erica Minchella' s "cynic's approval" of the mediation system. Judge Dorothy Kinniard noted that the program has an unquantifiable success quotient for those defendants who go through the mediation process, are not able to avoid foreclosure, but feel that they have been heard and had a "hearing" in which they were respected as people with a problem searching for a solution. If Mediation does nothing more than this, it is a success, although the statistics will not reveal it. A current concern that I have in my practice that I hope the new Supreme Court Rules will address is the all too common scenario in mortgage foreclosures where the loan ownership or servicing is transferred in the midst of loss mitigation negotiations. Some more skeptical that Erica or I might say that the "purpose" to such a transfer is to avoid a good faith effort at loss mitigation or loan modification; especially where the next communication from the new servicer is "We don't offer those programs".