May 15, 2020
Mr. Barnes has been participating in numerous CLE courses concerning force majeure and impossibility of performance defenses. The presentations so far have focused on narrative and cases involving assertion of the defenses in the non-foreclosure arena and have not, as of yet, specifically focused on the application of these defenses to foreclosures or evictions (aka FED and UD cases) in the context of a pandemic. The probable reason is that there has never been a pandemic in recent history which has affected homeowners in the manner that COVID-19 has, and thus there is no case law on the application of these defenses in the present context. Many cases involving foreclosure or eviction issues where these defenses will be raised will thus be “cases of first impression” in the courts.
All of the presenters agree on one thing: that there is going to be a lot of litigation and a lot of new law created as to the application of these defenses to foreclosure and eviction proceedings (which are scheduled to resume next month in numerous states). Several of the presenters have also commented that special COVID-19 mediation procedures will probably be set up as well.
To this end, Mr. Barnes has teamed up with Will Younghans of Coast to Coast Consultants LLC, and have formed a new company which is geared specifically toward assisting homeowners facing foreclosure or eviction as a result of the effects of COVID-19. The company will be involved in the development of new law centered around the defenses of force majeure, impossibility of peformance, and other defenses applicable to COVID-19 related foreclosures and evictions.
Mr. Barnes and Mr. Younghans, who have already worked together for several years on many foreclosure-related cases in several states, will also be assisting homeowners in COVID-19 related loan negotiations and mediations. Mr. Younghans has years of nationwide experience in assisting homeowners with loan modifications and workouts.
Requests for assistance can be made through the “Contact Us” link above.
Jeff Barnes, Esq., ForeclosureDefenseNationwide