Foreclosure Mediation Outreach Project
What is the Foreclosure Mediation and Outreach Program?
- The Foreclosure Mediation and Outreach Program (FMOP) is a collaborative project between ATJI and the Ronald A. Peterson Law Clinic's Predatory Lending Clinic in partnership with Northwest Justice Project , Columbia Legal Services , and Tacoma-Pierce County Volunteer Legal Services.
- The purpose of the project is to expand foreclosure prevention services to low and moderate income homeowners in Washington State under Washington's new mediation law: the Foreclosure Fairness Act.
- Currently, the project is focused on Pierce County, which has some of the state's highest foreclosure rates, as well as disproportionately low numbers of foreclosure mediation requests; however, the project also works in King and Snohomish counties.
How does the program work?
- The Foreclosure Fairness Act allows homeowners facing foreclosure to have the opportunity to be referred by a housing counselor or attorney to mediation with their lender to review available options to keep their home.
- Law students raise awareness about the options available to homeowners under the law through community outreach.
- Law students also partner with legal aid attorneys to assist the attorney in representing the client in pre-foreclosure mediation.
Why should students get involved?
- It is satisfying to know that you are helping low to moderate income individuals who otherwise might not receive any legal help at all.
- You will receive valuable foreclosure mediation training.
- You will work one-on-one with a practicing attorney.
- You will help to develop and execute a community outreach plan.
- You will have the opportunity to represent actual distressed homeowners in pre-foreclosure mediation.
- You will have an opportunity to do legal writing and research.
- You can accumulate pro bono hours under the Pro Bono Pledge Program.
- You will also have the opportunity to help shape and improve upon the functioning of the program.
What kind of a commitment do you need to make to be involved?
- Law students should expect to devote a minimum of 10 hours per week to the program for one summer or semester term.
- Attorney mentors should expect to attend a brief orientation and supervise their law student volunteer through the duration of their mediation case.
How do I apply?
- For law students: Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Send a cover letter and a resume to Angeline Thomas, FMOP Attorney, at firstname.lastname@example.org
- For interested attorneys: Contact Seattle University Law Foreclosure Mediation and Outreach Volunteer Coordinator, Michelle Yotter at email@example.com to receive a short questionnaire and schedule a date for the program orientation.
What training is offered?
- Students will attend a three-day intensive training session focused on foreclosure mediation and the Foreclosure Fairness Act along with other trainings on community outreach and the role of housing counselors and mediators.
- Attorney Mentors will attend a 45-minute program orientation and enroll in a free CLE live or via the web through the Washington State Bar's Home Foreclosure Legal Aid Project.
- Other training opportunities will be offered throughout the year.
Who do I contact for more information?
- For questions regarding working with student interns, contact FMOP Attorney Coordinator Angeline Thomas: firstname.lastname@example.org or (206) 398-4304
- For question regarding the Tacoma Pierce County Bar Association's Volunteer Legal Services, contact Program Director, Laurie Davenport: email@example.com or (253)-5134
The law school received a $100,000 grant from the Legal Foundation of Washington to help fund the project.