The National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS) Obtains a Legal Opinion on Maine’s ‘Act To Expedite the Foreclosure Process’

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NAMFS is working to clarify how Maine’s 'Act To Expedite the Foreclosure Process' impacts field services companies which provide default mortgage inspections and property preservation work in the state.

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Certain members of NAMFS and some of their activities now fall under the licensing and operational requirements of the FDCPA.

As part of an ongoing effort to clarify how Maine's 'Act to Expedite the Foreclosure Process' (LD 1389) affects mortgage field services companies in the state, The National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS) obtained a legal opinion on the statute. The law states that the definition of debt collector also includes "...any person regularly engaged in the enforcement of security interests, securing debts including a repossession company and a residential real estate property preservation provider." As a result of this new law, certain activities undertaken by NAMFS members now fall within the licensing and operational requirements of Maine's "Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)". These activities include: winterizing, changing locks, and removing items from within properties. Although it appears that completing exterior inspections or preservation work on properties does not fall within the new guidelines, the law is not clear and these actions may be included. Per the legal opinion, vendors completing preservation work in Maine are required to be registered and bonded. Failure to do so will result in unspecified penalties for non-compliance.

While there are no pending legal actions associated with this information, NAMFS will continue to monitor any enforcement actions related to Maine's "Act to Expedite the Foreclosure Process".

NAMFS will continue to seek legal opinions when appropriate to support our members on matters that impact their businesses. This is part of NAMFS' continuing effort to be ahead of the curve, and positively influence change on behalf of the industry.

An Act to Expedite the Foreclosure Process

Maine Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

About NAMFS

The National Association of Mortgage Field Services, Inc. (NAMFS) is the premier trade association for the mortgage field service industry. We are dedicated to working with all entities of the industry from the Government Agencies and investors that set policy to the contractors and inspectors that perform the work.

DISCLAIMER: NAMFS is presenting this material for informational purposes only and not as legal advice. NAMFS expressly disclaims all liability in respect to actions taken or not taken based on this information. Please consult your legal representative to obtain advice on the information presented.

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Eric Miller, Executive Director
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