ASSEMBLY, No. 3993

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

213th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED JUNE 4, 2009

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman AMY H. HANDLIN

District 13 (Middlesex and Monmouth)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Provides additional penalties for creditors that fail to maintain vacant residential properties during foreclosure.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act concerning maintenance of residential properties during foreclosure and amending P.L.2008, c.127.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    Section 17 of P.L.2008, c.127 (C.46:10B-51) is amended to read as follows:

     17.  a.  A creditor serving a notice of intention to foreclose on a mortgage on residential property in this State shall serve the public officer of the municipality in which the property is located, or, if the municipality has not designated a public officer pursuant to P.L.1942, c.112 (C.40:48-2.3 et seq.), the municipal clerk, with a copy of the notice at the same time it is served on the owner of the property. In the event that the property being foreclosed is an affordable unit pursuant to the "Fair Housing Act," then the creditor shall identify that the property is subject to the "Fair Housing Act." The copy served on the public officer or municipal clerk shall include the full name and contact information of an individual located within the State who is authorized to accept service on behalf of the creditor.

     b.    If a residential property becomes vacant at any point subsequent to the creditor's filing the notice of intention to foreclose, but prior to vesting of title in the creditor or any other third party, and the property is found to be a nuisance or in violation of any applicable State or local code, the local public officer or municipal clerk shall [notify] provide written notice to the creditor, which shall have the responsibility to abate the nuisance or correct the violation in the same manner and to the same extent as the title owner of the property, to such standard or specification as may be required by the public officer or municipal clerk, and within the time period set forth in the notice, which shall not be less than 30 days from the creditor’s receipt of the notice .

     c.     If the creditor that receives the notice, pursuant to the provisions of subsection b. of this section, fails to abate the nuisance or correct the violation as directed and within the time period set forth in the notice, the public officer or municipal clerk may impose on the creditor:

     (1)   the penalties allowed for the violation of municipal ordinances pursuant to R.S.40:49-5; and

     (2)   an additional penalty of not more than $100 per day for each day that failure to abate the nuisance or correct the violation continues after the time period set forth in the notice.

     d.    If the municipality expends public funds in order to abate a nuisance or correct a violation on a residential property in situations in which the creditor was given notice pursuant to the provisions of subsection b. of this section but failed to abate the nuisance or correct the violation as directed, the public officer or municipal clerk shall have the same recourse against the creditor as it would have against the title owner of the property, including but not limited to the recourse provided under section 23 of P.L.2003, c.210 (C.55:19-100).

(cf: P.L.2008, c.127, s.17)

 

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     The bill amends the “Mortgage Stabilization and Relief Act,” P.L.2008, c.127, (C.55:14K-82 et al.) by providing additional penalties for the failure of a creditor to abate a nuisance or correct a violation related to residential property that becomes vacant subsequent to the creditor’s filing of a notice of intention to foreclose on the property.

     This bill provides that, in connection with such a property, upon a creditor’s failure to abate a nuisance or correct a violation of any applicable State or local code, after receiving a written notice to do so from the local public officer or municipal clerk, the public officer or municipal clerk may impose on the creditor:

     (1)   penalties allowed for the violation of municipal ordinances pursuant to R.S.40:49-5; and

     (2)   an additional penalty of not more that $100 per day for each day that failure to abate the nuisance or correct the violation continues after the time period specified in the notice to abate or correct.

     The bill clarifies that the notice provided by the local public officer or municipal clerk shall be written, and specifies that the time provided for the creditor to abate the nuisance or correct the violation shall be not less than 30 days from the creditor’s receipt of the notice.

     The bill’s penalties are in addition to the act’s current provisions which allow recourse against a creditor in situations in which the municipality expends funds to abate a nuisance or correct a violation, after the creditor’s failure to do so.