Legal Aid Assists Struggling Homeowners with Foreclosure Prevention and Mortgage Relief
Across the county, financial hardships have either been created or exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. For homeowners who experienced reductions in income as a result of hardships like illness or job loss, paying their mortgage has been difficult. In response, the federal government allocated funds to create the California Mortgage Relief Program, which provides one-time funding for qualifying homeowners who have fallen behind on their mortgage due to the pandemic. More information about the program can be found at camortgagerelief.org. For homeowners needing assistance, the Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County is here to help clients navigate the application process through its Foreclosure Prevention and Consumer Protection Program.
The Legal Aid Foundation is a non-profit law firm that provides free legal services to low-income and other vulnerable residents in Santa Barbara County. The Foreclosure Prevention and Consumer Protection Program, in addition to helping distressed homeowners avoid foreclosure, also assists senior victims of financial abuse and exploitation. Program attorney Kate Lee assists senior clients facing issues related to consumer fraud, unlawful business practices, identity theft, and scams. Lee also manages the Consumer Debt and Bankruptcy Clinic, which provides free information on bankruptcy matters to self-represented individuals on Fridays from 10am-12pm.
Prospective Legal Aid clients can either call the office closest to them or visit the website to apply for services. After completing the intake forms and providing proof of income, the information will be forwarded to the attorney for review and potential clients will be notified of the next steps.
About the Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County
The Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County (Legal Aid) is a non-profit law firm that provides free legal assistance to Santa Barbara County residents. Its mission is to provide high-quality civil legal services to low-income and other vulnerable residents in order to ensure equal access to justice. Legal Aid changes lives through direct representation, legal advice and information, and community education. Since 1959, Legal Aid has provided legal services to those most in need in our community. Its offices are located in Santa Barbara, Lompoc, and Santa Maria.
Legal Aid Phone Numbers:
Santa Barbara: 805-963-6754
Santa Maria: 805-922-9909
For more info about our services, visit:
California Mortgage Relief (California Housing Finance Agency)
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(805) 963-6754 x103
Executive Director: Jennifer R. Smith
Our mission is to provide high-quality civil legal services to low-income and other vulnerable residents in order to ensure equal access to justice. We change lives through direct representation, legal advice and information, and community education.
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I am extremely appreciative of the help I received from the Legal Aid Foundation. They were thorough, assuring, and knowledgeable during a very uncertain time when I lacked the resources to otherwise receive a reasonable outcome with the housing crisis I faced.
Help Bridge the Gap
Despite the growth of the foundation, more resources are needed. The State Bar of California estimates an additional 9,000 full-time legal aid lawyers are needed to address the justice gap in the state. Santa Barbara County is no exception. In fact, the Legal Aid Foundation is seeking an additional attorney to help meet the growing needs of the Family Violence Prevention program.
The Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County seeks donations to help close the justice gap between the most vulnerable people and the rest of society. Donations help pay the costs to represent clients, and provide programs that prevent violence, protect the elderly, assist the poor, and help the disabled.
In Memory of D. William (Bill) Wagner
Saji Dias Gunawardane
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