Admitting failure, Florida Supreme Court ends foreclosure mediation program
Florida's foreclosure crisis lives on, but a statewide mediation program for troubled borrowers is dead.
Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles T. Canady issued an order Monday ending the effort to encourage lenders and borrowers to avoid foreclosure.
The program was a flop. Only 3.6 percent of cases referred to mediation statewide yielded a written agreement between the lender and homeowner. In Palm Beach County, which began its program in July 2010, a mere 1.6 percent of the 4,632 cases sent to mediation resulted in a written agreement.
Mortgage foreclosure defense attorney Thomas Ice says: "It wasn't real mediation," Ice said. "It was a loan-mod opportunity which was often lost because of paperwork problems. You could never get the actual owner of the note at the table. At best, you could get the servicer on the phone."