Bulletin: OR2020001

Date:
August 11, 2020
To:
All Oregon Issuing Offices
RE:
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE - Oregon 2020 Special Session House Bill 4204 pertaining to Foreclosures in Oregon during Covid-19 State of Emergency

Dear Associates:

The Oregon Legislative Assembly has passed House Bill 4204; it became effective on June 30, 2020. The Bill is designed to provide foreclosure relief for Oregonians during the State of Emergency caused by Covid-19. The State of Emergency began on March 8, 2020, and ends on September 30, 2020, unless extended by the Governor. HB 4204 applies to all real property located in Oregon, and personal property that is used as a residence in Oregon.

During the Emergency Period, a Lender may not treat as a default a Borrower’s failure to make a periodic installment payment. Upon notice that the failure to pay is “related to the COVID-19 pandemic”, the Lender must defer collecting payments during the Emergency Period.

On residential properties with less than 4 units, the Borrower need only “attest” that COVID is the reason for not making the payments. On residential properties with more than 4 units and commercial properties, the Borrower must also provide financial statements or other evidence of COVID’s negative impact on the ability to make payments.

HB 4204 voids any foreclosure sale that occurred after March 8, 2020, unless:

  • all notices were received prior to March 8, 2020
  • the sale occurs in connection with a tax foreclosure proceeding
  • the sale occurs after a person has recorded notice of intent to abandon real property or there is a judicial order that authorizes an abandonment of real property.

Pursuant to HB 4204 if a lender initiated a foreclosure prior to March 8, 2020, the period of time that must elapse between the time a lender initiated the foreclosure and the time at which a trustee’s sale, forfeiture remedy or other foreclosure may occur is tolled during the emergency period unless:

  • all notices were received prior to March 8, 2020
  • the sale occurs in connection with a tax foreclosure proceeding
  • the sale occurs after a person has recorded notice of intent to abandon real property or there is a judicial order that authorizes an abandonment of real property.

Company policy: Do not insure based on foreclosures begun or completed on or after March 8, 2020, unless you secure Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter approval.

If you have any questions relating to this or other bulletins, please contact a Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter.

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THIS BULLETIN IS FURNISHED TO INFORM YOU OF CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS. AS A REMINDER, YOU ARE CHARGED WITH KNOWLEDGE OF THE CONTENT ON VIRTUAL UNDERWRITER  AS IT EXISTS FROM TIME TO TIME AS IT APPLIES TO YOU, AS WELL AS ANY OTHER INSTRUCTIONS. OUR UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS DO NOT AUTHORIZE OUR ISSUING AGENTS TO ENGAGE IN SETTLEMENTS OR CLOSINGS ON BEHALF OF STEWART TITLE GUARANTY COMPANY. THIS BULLETIN IS NOT INTENDED TO DIRECT YOUR ESCROW OR SETTLEMENT PRACTICES OR TO CHANGE PROVISIONS OF APPLICABLE UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS. CONFIDENTIAL, PROPRIETARY, OR NONPUBLIC PERSONAL INFORMATION SHOULD NEVER BE SHARED OR DISSEMINATED EXCEPT AS ALLOWED BY LAW. IF APPLICABLE STATE LAW OR REGULATION IMPOSES ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS, YOU SHOULD CONTINUE TO COMPLY WITH THOSE REQUIREMENTS.