What is the Mortgage Foreclosure Trial Court Assistance Project?
The Indiana Supreme Court’s Mortgage Foreclosure Trial Court Assistance Project (MFTCAP) is a settlement conference program seeking to join borrowers and lenders with court-appointed facilitators. As a result of legislation passed in 2009, Indiana homeowners with a foreclosure action filed against them have the right to participate in a settlement conference with their lender in an effort to come to an agreement that will avert foreclosure. MFTCAP provides payments for these settlement conference services through qualified facilitators. This funding is provided in part by the Indiana Bar Foundation.
Who can provide these facilitation services?
To ensure that the services being provided meet the necessary level of quality, any facilitators wishing to be eligible to provide these services must be referred to the Indiana Office of Court Services (IOCS) by a judge of the county in which services will be provided. Once a judge has made a referral, a facilitator must execute a service contract with the IOCS and follow all required steps in that process, including becoming a state vendor. A facilitator may begin providing services to be reimbursed by IOCS once the contract is executed. Facilitators may service more than one county.
How do litigants access this service?
Indiana Code 32-30-10.5-8(c) provides that the creditor must include in the summons a notice that the debtor has the right to participate in a settlement conference by notifying the court of the debtor’s intent to participate. If the debtor so notifies the creditor or the court, the court then will refer the parties to the contracted facilitator for that county.
What settlement conference activities are funded by this service?
Reimbursed services include scheduling a telephone conference, conducting a telephone conference, scheduling a settlement conference, conducting a settlement conference, and conducting a follow-up settlement conference if it is determined that a follow-up settlement conference will increase the likelihood of a successful resolution. Payment is limited to scheduling one telephone conference, conducting one telephone conference, scheduling one settlement conference, conducting one settlement conference, and one follow-up conference per case, with the maximum payment per case being two hundred ten dollars ($210.00) per case.
How will settlement conference services be paid?
Contracted facilitators will submit their invoices as required within the contract, to Supct.firstname.lastname@example.org. Upon receipt, IOCS will process payments and deposit approved claim with the facilitator. Facilitators are required to be registered as vendors with the State of Indiana, which will be completed during the process of being accepted as a contracted facilitator.
How can judges make this service available in their county?
Judges are encouraged to contact Joseph Fischer, Staff Attorney with the IOCS, at the number and email address provided below. Judges should also identify a facilitator that has provided these services previously or determine who might best provide these services moving forward.
If you have any questions, please contact Joseph Fischer, Staff Attorney, Indiana Office of Court Services, MFTCAP@courts.in.gov.