SOURCE: New York State Attorney General

New York State Attorney General

April 25, 2013 15:34 ET

New Series of PSAs Highlight Attorney General's Homeowner Protection Program

PSAs to Inform Struggling Homeowners That Free Housing Counseling and Legal Assistance Are Available Through A.G.'s $60 Million Homeowner Protection Program

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Apr 25, 2013) - Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced his office's rollout of a new series of public service announcements aimed at highlighting free legal assistance and housing counseling available to New Yorkers who are struggling to fight foreclosure. The statewide advertisements are intended to publicize the Attorney General's Homeowner Protection Program (HOPP), a $60 million initiative to support housing counselors and legal services providers working with homeowners statewide.

"Providing a struggling family with legal counseling to navigate the foreclosure process can mean the difference between that family keeping their home or being displaced," Attorney General Schneiderman said. "Through these announcements, we're empowering at-risk homeowners with the knowledge of how to connect with professionals who can help them assert their rights. My office will continue to do everything in its power to put homeowners first, including making sure they have the resources available to say 'No' to foreclosure."

The Attorney General office's public service announcement, titled "Signs," informs homeowners of the free foreclosure counseling and legal representation available through the Homeowner Protection Program to aid those who are at risk of foreclosure. The PSA also encourages homeowners to call the statewide foreclosure hotline at 855-HOME-456 and visit www.AGHomeHelp.com to connect with organizations and agencies in their area who can provide foreclosure prevention services. It will air statewide in both English and Spanish for an indefinite period.

In just the first five months of reporting on the HOPP program, roughly 7,400 New York homeowners have been counseled through the HOPP program. Of the total number of families receiving assistance, 2,570 homeowners -- or close to 35% -- have pending or formally approved loan modifications thanks to assistance from one of the HOPP organizations.

Today's announcement is the latest part of Attorney General Schneiderman's multi-pronged strategy to stem foreclosures, provide relief to struggling homeowners and hold accountable those responsible for the mortgage crisis. In 2012, Attorney General Schneiderman introduced the Foreclosure Fraud Prevention Act, which would impose criminal penalties for knowingly filing false documents in a foreclosure proceeding, or overseeing employees who engage in such activity.

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