Union County residents fearing, facing or trying to avoid foreclosure can now get needed advice at a free educational presentation, “Foreclosure: Moving From Fear To Positive Action, presented by the Union County Human Relations Commission and the Union County Foreclosure Task Force, in cooperation with the New Jersey Public Defender’s Office of Dispute Settlement and the Union County Superior Court..
Panel members representing state and county agencies will provide information and guidance to these homeowners, including identifying free state and county resources that are available to them. “We have presented this Forum for the past five years, and I believe we can literally say we have helped every person who has attended these free presentations,” said Nora Mislan, co-chair of the Union County Human Relations Commission. “Understandably, anyone who is facing or fearing foreclosure is anxious and scared. They do not know how to save their homes or where to turn for help. They also are prey to con artists and scams. We want to let these residents know that they do not have to face this alone. There are knowledgeable experts, agencies and free resources available to them that can help them take positive actions and achieve the best possible outcome.”
Two programs – one in English and one in Spanish — will be held at the Iglesia Christiana Carismatica Church, located at 664 Newark Avenue, in Elizabeth. The Spanish language presentation will be held on Tuesday, September 27, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. and the English will be held on Tuesday, October 4. from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. Free parking is available at both sites, and both are wheelchair accessible.
“For any home owner facing foreclosure issues, getting reliable guidance and information is a critical first step toward improving your situation,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce H. Bergen. “The Freeholder Board is proud to support the Forum series, which provides County residents with an opportunity to talk to the experts in a relaxed, supportive environment.”
Created in 2008 by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders, the Union County Foreclosure Task Force shares information and coordinates action among various local entities working on foreclosure prevention and intervention. Representatives of the Task Force include county and state government, community and advocacy groups, legal agencies, financial institutions, faith-based organizations and housing counseling agencies.
The presentation includes an overview of the New Jersey Foreclosure Mediation Program which is designed to provide distressed homeowners with experienced advocates and neutral mediators, to make sure that all possible ways of keeping their houses are explored with their banks.
Attendees will also gain an understanding of foreclosure proceedings, the court mediation process, Sheriff’s sales, guidance on avoiding foreclosure scams, and details about resources available to those who are affected. Tenants living in foreclosed properties will also be directed to available resources.
Following the presentation, the panelists will gladly answer questions from the audience, and will be available briefly following the program to address individual concerns.
Pre-registration is not required. For more information, contact the Union County Human Relations Commission, 908-889-9028.