Could you end up in jail for not paying your bills? Is our country’s need for speed going to derail efforts to end improper loan-servicing and foreclosure practices? How do Florida’s nuclear power plants compare to those in Japan?
Those are just some of the questions being asked this week from top tier business and real estate reporters around the country. Most importantly, the answers could have profound effects on Florida’s housing market and our country’s economy.
Welcome to Debtors’ Prison, 2011 Edition
More than a third of all U.S. states allow borrowers who are behind on credit-card payments, auto loans and other bills to be jailed, according to The Wall Street Journal Business Writer Jessica Silver-Greenberg.
In Florida, training this week for dozens of new judges moving to courts with the power to lock up borrowers includes a session about potential abuses of debt-related warrants. “Before we take away a person’s freedom, we want to ensure that there are procedural safeguards,” said Peter Evans, a Palm Beach County, Fla., state-court judge who proposed the session.
A Swift Deal May Not Be a Sound One
This country’s need for speed derailed the mortgage industry, and that same breakneck pace is threatening to ruin a bank settlement being devised by state attorneys general relating to improper loan-servicing and foreclosure practices.