The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released an updated Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) Notice, form HUD-92070, in late December 2014 to replace the SCRA Notice which expired on November 30, 2014. The updated SCRA Notice issued in December included information contradictory to the timeframe of protections afforded to servicemembers in the SCRA, as amended.
The SCRA Notice, form HUD-92070, provides information on the following: 1) legal rights and protections under SCRA; 2) who may be entitled to legal protection under SCRA; 3) legal protections provided to servicemembers under SCRA; 4) how to request relief; and 5) how to obtain information about the SCRA. The information in the SCRA Notice released December 2014 conveyed that servicemembers were protected for a period of 90 days after military service from actions to enforce debt against real estate as well as from the sale, foreclosure or the seizure of real estate. Rather, as a result of an amendment on December 18, 2014, which extended a temporary one-year timeframe for protections against certain debt enforcement related to real estate, the SCRA Notice should have stated the protection period as one-year after military service.
The SCRA originally provided protection for 90 days after military service from debt enforcement action or the sale, foreclosure or seizure of property where real estate was concerned. However, the 90 day timeframe was extended, beginning in 2008, by a string of amendments. These timeframes were set to revert back to the original 90 day timeframe pertaining to debt enforcement and other proceeding relating to mortgage and trust deeds as of December 31, 2014, but was amended once again in mid-December. Here is a list of the amendments to the 90 timeframe.
- The Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) temporarily increased the 90 days to 9 months from July 30, 2008 to December 31, 2010;
- The Helping Heroes Keep their Homes Act temporarily extended the HERA provision through December 31, 2012;
- The Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Acttemporarily increased 90 days to one-year from February 2, 2013 – December 31, 2014; and
- The Foreclosure Relief and Extension for Servicemembers Act enacted on December 18, 2014 extended the one-year time frame until December 31, 2015.
As of mid-January HUD has posted a revised copy of the SCRA Notice reflecting the correct timeframe of one-year as extended in the SCRA.
While the corrections have been made to the official form, it makes complying with the requirement to provide accurate information to borrowers more difficult for financial institutions since many had already begun using the form with errors, released in late December 2014, and may not realize the form has been corrected. In fact, HUD did not indicate on the corrected form (e.g. inclusion of revised date) that it was revised to include the correct information.
To ensure you are using the correct form verify the date of the form, the expiration date, and the time periods listed under “What Legal Protections are Servicemembers Entitled to Under SCRA” state one-year. You can find the corrected SCRA Notice on HUD’s website at https://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/documents/huddoc?id=92070.pdf.
Submitted by: Robin Cooper