One of the Heroes in the Fight

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CalHomeLaw.org is one of the heroes in the heroes in fight against abuse by Homeowners Associations. It costs a few bucks to join, but the average member will be paid back many times in advice and information. It’s designed for California residents but every homeowner in the country can profit from their wisdom and research.

Anyway, in their 2/25/12 email, CalHomeLaw notes how debt collectors cut their own throats in a meeting of the California Legislature. The Radcliffs were an elderly disabled couple in Calaveras County. For some reason, the couple overlooked a $120 annual assessment. The debt collector, Coast Assessment Collection, claimed the couple had been legally served with papers. During questioning, the company admitted that it had stapled the notice of foreclosure to a tree on the far side of the Radcliff’s property.

Angry senators then introduced SB137, a bill to clean up predatory collection practices. The new law demands that notices of foreclosure be physically put into the hands of those targeted for foreclosure. You can’t mail it, you can’t toss it on the porch, it has to be in the homeowner’s hands.

Also, the HOA initiating the foreclosure has to follow a number of other new procedures to make sure that homes aren’t whipped away from the owners. Dispute resolution is mandated.

Still, CalHomeLaw notes that many HOA debt collectors continue the old practices and haven’t improved their behavior.

Ah. Almost forgot to tell you. (dang my fading memory!) Most of the HOA debt collectors are law firms or subdivisions of law firms. (How could I forget that?)

CalHomeLaw.org has the whole sordid story posted.

Ward Lucas
Author of
Neighbors At War: The Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association

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About Ward Lucas

Ward Lucas is a longtime investigative journalist and television news anchor. He has won more than 70 national and regional awards for Excellence in Journalism, Creative Writing and community involvement. His new book, "Neighbors At War: the Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association," is now available for purchase. In it, he discusses the American homeowners association movement, from its racist origins, to its transformation into a lucrative money machine for the nation's legal industry. From scams to outright violence to foreclosures and neighborhood collapses across the country, the reader will find this book enormously compelling and a necessary read for every homeowner. Knowledge is self-defense. No homeowner contemplating life in an HOA should neglect reading this book. No HOA board officer should overlook this examination of the pitfalls in HOA management. And no lawyer representing either side in an HOA dispute should gloss over what homeowners are saying or believing about the lawsuit industry.

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