Recently, an administrator from a southern US state reached out to RSI with questions concerning financial support for court ADR programs. After having a substantially well-funded program for many years, the state was hit hard by the recession and had to cut many services. Hoping to rebuild the robustness of her state’s ADR offerings, she reached out to RSI about developing a proposal for a new pilot program, asking specifically how to finance such an undertaking. (more…)
Posts Tagged ‘funding’
Last Wednesday was a great evening for RSI! We held our first-ever “friendraising” event and presented our first-ever RSI Appreciation Award. Our generous friends at the Chicago office of the Skadden Arps law firm kindly hosted a beautiful reception for about 60 people. This was our first reception designed to introduce RSI to new friends in the Chicago corporate and legal world. Attendees included lawyers from some of Chicago’s largest corporations and law firms, judges from the counties where RSI conducts foreclosure mediation programs, and RSI’s own Board and staff members, with a sprinkling of local neutrals, funders and others. The two highlights of the program were remarks by the Illinois Attorney General and the presentation of the RSI Appreciation Award. (more…)
RSI was recently asked to participate in an American Bar Association meeting about support for the courts during the recent economic downturn. In the past few years, court systems around the country have had their budgets cut, to the point where some are closing courthouses altogether. RSI Executive Director Susan Yates commented on the effect these cuts have had on support for court ADR programs. To prepare for the meeting, we did some research and reached out to ADR administrators to find out what’s happening in their programs. This handout discusses what we found.
Is your ADR program facing similar funding challenges? If so, what impact has it had on your services?
PRE-MEDIATION SESSION ELEMENTS
Conduct Extensive, Personalized Outreach to Borrowers
Outreach to borrowers is key to getting participation in the program. Most people do not open their mail or answer the phone when they are in foreclosure. For those that do, legal notices should be written in simple language with a clear instruction for what borrowers should do next. Programs should find ways other than mail to help borrowers access mediation programs.
With the proliferation of foreclosure mediation programs, legislation, and reports, states and other entities attempting to create such programs need clear, expert guidance about lessons learned during foreclosure mediation’s four-year history. Especially with additional funding from the 49 state attorney general foreclosure settlement, states have the powerful opportunity to create high quality mediation programs. This report, which will be featured in three parts on this blog, highlights wisdom collected from existing programs, failed attempts to create programs, and mediation’s long history of success in resolving court-based and other types of disputes. The first section is on how to begin a foreclosure mediation program to ensure its success.
Set Goals and Define Success