Governor O’Malley Signs Bill to Enhance Enforcement of Lending Laws


BALTIMORE (May 13, 2008) – Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation Secretary Thomas E. Perez and Commissioner of Financial Regulation Sarah Bloom Raskin applauded Governor O’Malley’s signing of legislation that will better enable the Commissioner to protect consumers in mortgage and other financial transactions.

House Bill 417 authorizes the Commissioner to enter into information sharing agreements with certain regulatory agencies from other states and the federal government. The Commissioner will have the authority to exchange information and data regarding mortgage and other licensees, better enabling the prevention of mortgage fraud, illegal lending activities and other financial-related wrongdoing.

“Governor O’Malley has repeatedly shown his commitment to protecting and preserving homeownership in Maryland, and this bill is one more tool to enhance our ability to protect homeowners and crack down on unscrupulous practices that prey on Maryland consumers,” Secretary Perez said.

“The authority to exchange data across state lines will enhance our ability to enforce critical mortgage lending and financial regulation laws. It will allow significant cooperation with other states and federal regulatory agencies, including sharing information about enforcement or disciplinary actions taken against mortgage and other licensees that operate in multiple states,” Commissioner Raskin said.

Last month Governor O’Malley signed into law a package of mortgage lending and foreclosure reforms, which granted greater protections for homeowners in the foreclosure process, created a criminal mortgage fraud statute and tightened lending standards to help ensure that borrowers are able to afford their loans. House Bill 417 adds another layer to Maryland’s efforts to encourage sustainable homeownership.

This bill also enhances the Commissioner’s ability to enter into agreements needed to share information to help thwart terrorist financing and money laundering. The law takes effect July 1, 2008.

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Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation Press Release