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On June 30, Oregon enacted legislation that prohibits residential and commercial evictions based on nonpayment of rent during an “emergency period,” which extends from April 1 until September 30, 2020. The law also creates a six month grace period for tenants to make outstanding rental payments accrued during the emergency period. Tenants cannot be evicted during the grace period for failure to repay rent accrued during the emergency period, but tenants must make rental payments going forward. Prior to enactment of the legislation, the Oregon governor created a moratorium on eviction using an executive order.
On June 30, the Oregon governor signed HB 4204, which requires mortgage payment deferrals and limits foreclosures during the Covid-19 emergency period, which runs from March 8 until September 30. Among other things, during that period, a lender may not treat as a default a borrower’s failure to make a periodic installment payment or to pay any other amount that is due to the lender if, at any time during the emergency period, the borrower notifies the lender of his or her inability to make the periodic installment payment. Unless the lender and borrower do not otherwise agree to otherwise modify, defer, or mitigate a loan, the lender must refrain from collecting during the emergency period and must permit the borrower to pay the amounts deferred at the end of the mortgage term. The bill also imposes certain restrictions on a lender’s ability to assess late fees and to pursue a foreclosure. The bill became effective on June 30.
On June 30, the Oregon governor signed HB 4212A into law, which authorizes remote online notarization through July 2021. Under the new law, a commissioned notary public may use audio-visual technology to perform notarizations, subject to certain requirements, limitations and conditions. The Oregon secretary of state also issued guidance which assists notaries to find technology vendors that meet the requirements of the new law, register for online notarization training, and submit the required notice form.
On April 30, the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services, Division of Financial Regulations issued Bulletin No. DFR 2020-14 to provide guidance to state-regulated debt buyers and collection agencies on reasonable measures they could take consistent with the governor’s April 17 executive order preventing garnishment of CARES Act stimulus checks (covered here). The guidance encourages entities to take active measures to help debtors affected by Covid-19, including: (i) offering payment accommodations like deferrals; (ii) waiving certain fees; (iii) temporarily suspending collection activities for debtors with significant hardships; and (iv) stopping collection activity for debts whose only income source is exempt.
Oregon Division of Financial Regulation issues bulletin permitting temporary work from home for employees of certain licensees
On April 20, the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation issued a revised Bulletin No. DFR 2020-6 temporarily authorizing certain licensees to work from home while transacting business when specific conditions are met. Among other things, the bulletin requires licensed companies to provide prior notice to the DFR of their intent to permit employees to work from home to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
On April 17, the governor of Oregon issued an executive order exempting all CARES Act stimulus payments to individuals from garnishment, subject to limited exceptions. CARES Act payments will remain exempt from garnishment when deposited into a financial institution. The exemption will remain in effect until terminated by the governor.
In late March, Oregon published a website that includes FAQs addressing Covid-19 insurance and financial services information for consumers. The website addresses questions regarding, among other things, making mortgage payments and addressing concerns about keeping money in checking or savings accounts during the Covid-19 outbreak. In addition, the responses to the FAQs indicate that the Division of Financial Regulation is encouraging its regulated lenders and financial service providers to take active measures to provide help to people and businesses affected by the pandemic, including offering loan forbearance plans, fee waivers, and other deferred payment options to their customers.
On March 22, Oregon Governor Kate Brown issued an executive order placing a moratorium on residential evictions for reason of nonpayment during the Covid-19 crisis. The order called the moratorium "both a moral and a public health imperative" for those unable to make payments during the pandemic, and stipulated that evictions will be put on hold for a 90-day grace period.
On March 20, the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation issued a bulletin for state-regulated lenders and loan servicers to work with borrowers impacted by Covid-19. The division encouraged lenders and servicers to offer distressed borrowers forbearance plans, waive late and online payment fees, ease credit terms for new loans, and deferred payment options. Most provisions of the bulletin called for a 90-day grace period and placed a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures. The guidance applies to banking institutions, credit unions, mortgage bankers, mortgage brokers, loan originators, and servicers, consumer finance lenders, and payday and title lenders. The issuance follows a declared state of emergency by Governor Brown on March 8.
- Steven R. vonBerg to discuss "Non-QM market overview and the impact & key details of the sunrise of seasoned non-QM/extension of the patch" at the IMN Non-QM Virtual Conference
- Buckley Webcast: Looking ahead — Tighter scrutiny of deposit and payment practices
- Jeffrey P. Naimon to discuss "What have you bought non-QM post-Covid?" at the IMN Non-QM Virtual Conference
- Garylene D. Javier to moderate "Innovation in an evolving privacy landscape" at the American Bar Association Business Law Section Consumer Financial Services Committee Winter Meeting