MAAPL Files New Bills for the 2015 Legislative Session

MAAPL has filed nine new bills on Beacon Hill to protect the rights of Massachusetts homeowners against illegal foreclosures and to reduce the number of foreclosures in the state. These bills now have lead sponsors, and MAAPL is seeking additional co-sponsors for them.

The bills, with their House and Senate Docket numbers and lead sponsors are listed below.

An Act to Prevent Unnecessary Vacancies  in Foreclosed Homes (HD 3200/SD 920)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. Jeff Sanchez; Sen. Jamie Eldridge
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act to Facilitate Alternatives to Foreclosure (HD 2615/SD 1146)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. Mary S. Keefe; Sen. Harriet Chandler
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act to Establish Foreclosure Review Division of the Superior Court
(HD 3525/SD 1845)

Lead Sponsors: Rep. Aaron Vega; Sen. Thomas McGee
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act Relative to the Improvement in the Process for Collecting Delinquent Property Taxes (HD 1656/SD 895)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. John Mahoney; Sen. Sal DiDomenico
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act to Ensure Reliable Land Title to Bolster Local Home Ownership and Business Creation (HD 3471)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. Benjamin Swan; Sen. Eileen T. Donoghue
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act Relative to Vacant and Foreclosed Property (HD2826/SD 1572)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. Frank Moran; Sen. Barbara L’Italien
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: Pending

An Act Relative to the Tax Relief of Mortgage Debt (HD 3219/SD1424)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. Jay Kaufman; Sen. Sal DiDomenico
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act to Require Judicial Foreclosure (HD 486/SD125)
Lead Sponsors: Rep. Frank Smizik; Sen. Timothy M. Kennedy
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

An Act to establish a Resolution Trust Fund (HD 3034)
Lead Sponsor: Rep. Michelle DuBois
MAAPL Fact Sheet on this bill: ( PDF )

Please contact your legislators today to ask them to co-sponsor these bills. The more early support we can get for these bills, the more likely it is that we can get them passed and better protect Massachusetts from the continuing negative impacts of the foreclosure crisis on our communities.

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2 Weeks Left to Support MAAPL!

2 weeks — that’s how long we have left to raise the funds needed to do vital work towards ending unnecessary and illegal foreclosures in Massachusetts! In 2015, let’s win justice for homeowners, and start bringing home the billions illegally taken through predatory loans and foreclosures by the banks! Let’s support those leading the struggle and reach thousands wronged but not yet involved! Please give to MAAPL’s fundraiser by January 15th, 2015 — any amount will help — and spread the link below to your friends and networks!

Visit to donate now, and do your part to end illegal foreclosures! Thank you for your support!

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Support MAAPL’s First Fundraising Campaign!

The Massachusetts Alliance Against Predatory Lending (MAAPL) has launched its first online fundraising campaign to fight foreclosures throughout Massachusetts and take back our homes! Visit to learn more.

As with passing or stopping legislation, it’s the hundreds of calls or hundreds of clicks that mean SUCCESS. Whatever amount you give  big or small – your contribution will help put this fundraising campaign over the top. Unlike other forms of fundraising, online campaigns rely on the hundreds of $5 or $10 contributions that REALLY add up! Of course, feel free to make us proud with a $100 donation or even $2,000 to get a gorgeous handmade lap-quilt as a thank-you for your gift!

Why should you support our fundraising campaign? Because…

• September 2014’s foreclosure activity was UP 68% over last year.

• Together all of us accomplished the unheard of task of stopping an industry sweetheart bill that was fast-tracked “behind closed doors”  we STOPPED THE SLASHING of hundreds-year-old homeowner rights to one year to sue to regain your home!

• We have legal challenges to the foundations of the Securitized Trusts, MERS, Freddie, Fannie, and more in the pipeline!

• Under the leadership of our members of color, we are reaching out to connect with hundreds of previously wronged homeowners to bring them back into the fight…

And in the next 3 weeks before Christmas, we will contact hundreds of Massachusetts homeowners facing an auction once we hit our first $3,000! Your generous gift will make that possible.

With your financial support of our fundraising campaign on Indiegogo, MAAPL and its homeowner-members will:

• Stop future foreclosures and their destruction of families and communities;

• Contact the thousands of illegally foreclosed homeowners who don’t yet know their rights, give them the legal and organizational support to keep or regain their homes, or to win just compensation for their loss; and

• Bring home the billions of dollars in wealth that the banks’ greedy foreclosures stripped from our communities and local economies.

But we need your participation and support to stop the predatory practices of the big banks and prevent thousands of needless foreclosures in Massachusetts.

Learn more, make your contribution, and get some great perks at our Indiegogo campaign page today! Visit now to support our work.

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Watch MAAPL’s AG Foreclosure Forum Video

Thanks to Democratic Massachusetts attorney general candidates Warren Tolman and Maura Healey; our partners for this Forum: Springfield No One Leaves, Greater Springfield NAACP, ARISE for Social Justice, and OutNow; Alex Richardson, and to everyone who came to Springfield to participate, MAAPL’s AG Community Forum on Foreclosure was a great success!

If you couldn’t make it to the Forum, you can watch our videos of the sessions with both candidates below. Please allow about an hour and 10 minutes to watch all four videos.

Maura Healey:


Warren Tolman:

There’s a Playlist of all four videos available on YouTube. Special thanks to Joe Oliverio for videotaping these sessions and editing the footage.


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AG Candidates in MAAPL Foreclosure Forum this Friday, Sept 5 in Springfield!

The two Massachusetts Democratic Party* candidates for Attorney General have agreed to a Foreclosure Forum with MAAPL and foreclosed families tomorrow at the foreclosed home of Springfield No One Leaves activist, Alex Richardson. Just days before the primary, find out what the candidates for Attorney General will do to solve the ongoing foreclosure crisis!

Download the flyer for this event: Springfield AG Candidate Forum (PDF)

Date/Time: Friday, September 5, 2014; Warren Tolman at 11:00 am, and Maura Healey at 3:00 pm
Alex Richardson
68 Rochelle Street
Springfield, MA

The new MA Attorney General will play a key role in our state’s ongoing foreclosure issues. Foreclosure starts are up 72% over last year – as MAAPL predicted. We have evidence of thousands of illegal foreclosures, and hundreds of thousands of broken chains of title to mortgages sitting in our Registries of Deeds! We need the RIGHT Attorney General for the Commonwealth to address these issues and bring justice to Massachusetts homeowners!

Attend to ask the candidates about their positions – Warren Tolman will be with MAAPL at 11:00 am and Maura Healey will be with us at 3:00 pm in front of the Richardson home.

Warren Tolman’s posted position –

Maura Healey’s posted position:

For more information on this event, please contact Sue Parsons at 617-877-2930 or Grace Ross at

* Republican AG candidate, John Miller, is uncontested in the 9/9 primary. MAAPL will profile his views later.

See you in Springfield on Friday!

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Sign our Petition to Thank Gov. Patrick for Protecting Homeowner’s Rights!

MAAPL has posted a petition on to thank Governor Deval Patrick for acting to protect people’s right to sue to regain their illegally foreclosed homes, and we invite you to join us in expressing our gratitude by signing the petition.

The Massachusetts Legislature’s bill, S1987, would have curtailed our longstanding right to sue to regain our homes foreclosed illegally – as has been the case for so many. Wealthy interests used S1987 to attack our 300 year-old property rights. They tried to strip us of them in the back halls of the State House. With no debate, the Legislature wanted to slam the 20 year window to sue down to one year for the 65,000 and three years for anyone in the future.

Thanks to Governor Patrick’s action, the bill was returned to the Legislature with language reinstating a compromise amendment that had been negotiated in the House of Representatives that specifies a 10 year right to sue. So please join us in recognizing and thanking Governor Patrick for supporting the rights of the Commonwealth’s homeowners – sign the petition today!

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MAAPL Victory Rally at State House, Weds. August 13th

MAAPL invites you to  join us for our victory rally, speakout and press conference at the State House on Beacon Hill in Boston to celebrate the defeat of S1987!

Date/Time: 12:30 pm on Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Location: State House steps if weather is dry–Rm. 437 if rain as predicted.

View and print our flyer for this event (Word file).

Come out to celebrate with us, and hear stories of homeowners whose efforts to regain their homes after illegal foreclosure would have been in vain if S1987 had passed–it takes longer than one year to win these cases!

Want to know more about why we’re celebrating? The State House News has published a great article on the fight to defeat S1987–you can read it here.

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VICTORY! S1987 Returned to Legislators with 10 Year Rule!



On the afternoon of Monday, August 11th, Governor Patrick sent the Legislature an “amended” version of S1987 that he knows they won’t accept. In order for them to make S1987 a law, the legislature would have to go through multiple, close to impossible steps that one legislator’s opposition can scuttle. WE WON the equivalent of a veto!

Your herculean efforts have led to an UNPRECEDENTED victory. No matter the industry, the rich lobbyists of powerful industries are used to filing to strip our rights and then passing them quickly, essentially behind closed doors, at the last minute – too fast for people power to mobilize.

We caught them! The years of talking to legislators, keeping the foreclosure crisis visibly in their faces, with our huge forces working together and then this huge final push with the governor means we basically STOPPED Senate bill 1987.

Together, we are powerful – and if we keep building this momentum, the best is yet to come!

MAAPL will announce the time of our Wednesday Victory Rally on the State House Steps soon.

What happened procedurally? The Governor can outright veto – for a bill that top legislators want that is politically costly. He clearly was convinced this was NOT a bill he wanted to sign. He had a third option which was to amend. And the safest amendment was the one we had written and the House leadership had accepted at one point even though they stripped it later.

So he sent back a 10 year amendment. The Senate and House could accept that – not our favorite option, but the Industry would HATE that. The Senate and House could try getting through very complicated procedures to strip the 10 year amendment out again. HOWEVER, that is MUCH harder to do now that they have ended all formal sessions for the year. We will make sure we are watching (like we did before) AND make sure our friends in the legislature don’t let the 1-year version pass! And the Governor will be watching right along with us!

In short, WE DID IT.

Thanks to everyone who called, faxed, wrote in, signed on to the Open Letter, and supported our efforts to stop this bill! Together, we all won! Please share this news widely–we want to inform and thank the many hundreds of people who made calls! this is a victory for ALL of us!

Please also thank the Governor for his action on behalf of Massachusetts homeowners: call him at 617-725-4005! He needs to hear we noticed and are still watching!

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Leaders from Communities of Color Speak Out Against S1987

Leaders from Communities of Color Speak Out as Governor Deliberates: “Don’t Curtail Historic Right to Sue; Leave a Legacy of Opportunity to Recoup Homes Taken by Illegal Foreclosures

As the deadline for the Governor to decide what of dozens of bills to veto or sign approaches, Leaders of Color from across the state, including Worcester, Brockton and Boston, publicly ask that  the Governor refuse to sign a little-known piece of legislation, Senate Bill #1987.

“We are watching with grave concern. The Governor has a chance here to leave a legacy of access to justice for 65,000+ foreclosed households in Massachusetts – disproportionately homeowners of color – or deny that access,” explains Juan M. Cofield, President, NAACP, New England Area Conference, “This bill, Senate 1987, will codify the last decade of illegal behavior by lending institutions – which they have often admitted – and specifically racially discriminatory practices by slashing the window for illegally foreclosed homeowners to sue to regain their homes from 20 years down to 1 year.”

Click this link to read the open letter (Word file) from a list of thirteen signatories – all leaders in communities of color across Massachusetts. The longer the Governor deliberates on signing the bill, the larger hopes have grown that he will preserve access to justice. The eloquent letter speaks for itself. It began circulating for signatures late Thursday, and its list of names continues to grow.

Signatories include: Charles J. Ogletree, Jr., Executive Director, Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice, Harvard University; Robert Terrell, Executive Director, The Fair Housing Center of Greater Boston; Juan M. Cofield, President, NAACP, New England Area Conference; Horace Small, Executive Director, Union of Minority Neighborhoods; Pat Yancey, President, Worcester NAACP Branch; Marvin Martin, Executive Director, Greater Four Corners Action Coalition; Honorable Tito Jackson, City Councilor, District 7, Boston, Massachusetts; Magalis Troncoso, Executive Director, Dominican Development Center; Stephanie Williams, Housing Chair, Boston NAACP Branch; Honorable Jass Stewart, City Councilor at Large, Brockton, Massachusetts; Honorable Sarai Rivera, City Councilor, District 4, Worcester, Massachusetts; Heloisa Maria Galvão, Executive Director, Brazilian Women’s Group; Rahsaan D. Hall, Esq., Deputy Director, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice.

“Senate Bill 1987, darling of the Title Insurance Lobby – though named An Act to Clear Title to Foreclosed Properties – does nothing to correct title for either the 65,000+ foreclosed homes or the literally hundreds of thousands of damaged titles to homeowners’ properties across the state,” Heloisa Maria Galvão, Executive Director, Brazilian Women’s Group, “Even though the SJC has agreed that thousands of Massachusetts homeowners’ foreclosures contain violations, S1987 seeks to stop wronged homeowners from coming into court with viable legal challenges and getting their homes back.”

“During this present foreclosure crisis, our communities of color lost about $8 to $12 billion in household wealth; the whole state economy lost conservatively $20 to $40 billion. Only homeowners who were wronged can bring that wealth back to Massachusetts – why would we shut the door on that important chance at justice for our whole state?” explains Zakiya Alake, from Union of Minority Neighborhoods, a homeowner herself foreclosed early in the 2000’s.

Click this link to download the full text of this press release (Word file).

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Update on S1987: Gov. Patrick Needs to Hear From You Now!

We are asking for a full court press to defeat S1987 now!  We have heard directly from the team responsible for review that it is still in the active process category! Governor Patrick could sign or veto the bill any time through Monday, August 11, or he could wait and let it die.  He has indicated he is sympathetic to the homeowners on this issue, but he is also hearing from the real estate lawyers and title insurers.  We need to flood his office with calls (considering faxing something if you haven’t).

As you no doubt know, MAAPL and our allies and member groups have been working for over three years to stop a bill from coming out of the Legislature that would cut the time a homeowner has post-foreclosure to file a lawsuit against the banks from 20 years to 1 year for those already foreclosed on, including 65,000 former homeowners in Massachusetts. The new law would shorten the time for foreclosed homeowners going forward, to 3 years.

Please make a call now to Governor Patrick, or send a fax, calling on him to veto S1987.  (See suggested text below.)

Next, consider doing any or all of these:
• Call other people you know who feel strongly about homeowners’ rights, the foreclosure issue and saving our neighborhoods and ask them to make the call.
• Request that the leadership of your organizations  endorse this call and participate in mobilizing members to make the call.
• Alert your members and colleagues by putting out this request on your Facebook page, Twitter, email list and blog.

617-725-4005: Call the Governor and tell him – “Veto S1987! This outrageous bill slashes homeowners’ right to sue to regain their illegally foreclosed home to 1 year and it doesn’t do anything to actually clear the titles to foreclosed homes. There are currently 65,000 MA homeowners in foreclosure who deserve this 300 – year old historic right to maintain their home from the illegal actions of banks during the foreclosure crisis.”


617-727-9725: Fax the Governor – with your name, your town (and fax# or address, asking for a response). Tell him: “Veto S1987! This outrageous bill slashes homeowners’ right to sue to regain their illegally foreclosed home to 1 year and it doesn’t do anything to actually clear the titles to foreclosed homes. There are currently 65,000 MA homeowners in foreclosure who deserve this 300 – year old historic right to maintain their home from the illegal actions of banks during the foreclosure crisis.”

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