Attorney General Kamala Harris says the laws stop a series of
inherently unfair bank practices that have forced thousands of
Californian homeowners into foreclosure.
The "Homeowner Bill of Rights" prevents foreclosures while
loan modifications are in progress and it provides a single point
of contact when homeowners are dealing with lenders.
Harris says it also allows her office to investigate and
prosecute complex mortgage fraud schemes by extending the statute
of limitations from one year to three.
HARRIS: "It was designed to make the system more
straightforward and more transparent, and it has teeth meaning if
there is failure to comply then there will be the opportunity and
the recourse which is to take folks into court and force
The new laws can also compel owners of foreclosed properties to
pay for upkeep of vacant homes as a way to fight neighborhood