N.Y. State Envisions Penalties for Foreclosure Delays

Noting that the average New York state foreclosure takes more than 900 days—twice the national average—and that foreclosures account for nearly three in 10 civil cases on court dockets, the New York Department of Financial Services today recommended that the state legislature take action to speed up the foreclosure process.

State law currently requires both sides in a foreclosure to “negotiate in good faith.” The department urged adding a definition of this to the statute, along with penalties for parties on both sides that fail to do so. It also recommended requiring institutions foreclosing to communicate with borrowers that they may remain in their homes until a sale is completed and that they are obligated to maintain the property during that time, as well as creating streamlined foreclosure processes for vacant and abandoned residential properties and uncontested commercial foreclosures.