Archive for October, 2010
Thursday, October 28th, 2010
Wednesday, October 27th, 2010
The Montgomery County Commission for Women’s Counseling and Career Center is offering the following upcoming workshops and seminars:
1. Wednesday, November 2, 2010 from 7 PM to 8:45 PM – Mediation Seminar: Divorce with Dignity. This workshop will explain “how mediation works, what topics are covered, how to choose a mediator and what to expect in terms of cost and time.” The fee is $20 per person.
2. Monday, November 8, 2010 from 10 AM to 12 PM – Time Management. This workshop will “help you to establish priorities, make healthy choices and more effectively manage your time.” The fee is $20 per person.
3. Tuesday, November 9, 2010 from 7 PM to 8:45 PM - Divorce Legal Seminar – Part I: Overview of Non-Child-Related Issues. This seminar will focus on “grounds for divorce, spousal support, property distribution, settlement agreements, choosing an attorney, and methods of dispute resolution other than litigation.” The fee is$20 a person. There will be additional fee of $5 for materials due at the time of the seminar.
To learn more about the above workshops and seminars (location, registration, etc.) please click here. To visit the Montgomery County Commission for Women’s website please visit http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/cfwtmpl.asp?url=/content/cfw/index.asp.
Tuesday, October 26th, 2010
In Montgomery County Division of Solid Waste Services’ October 2010 Newsletter, Montgomery County provides its residents with a number of helpful tips and reminders. The October 2010 Newsletter provides the holiday trash collection schedules, information on the community paper shred and donation events on November 13 and 14, and tips for curbside recycling of leaves. To read the Newsletter in its entirety, please click here.
Wednesday, October 20th, 2010
It is always better to be prepared for the “what ifs” than to be unprepared. Although we hope that we will never find ourselves in an emergency situation, we should all be prepared just in case. Please take a look at two documents from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security; the first document is a two-page checklist and the second document is a packet that provides additional suggestions, plans, etc. We hope you find these helpful. Should you have any comments or additional suggestions, please let us know.
Wednesday, October 20th, 2010
On Sunday, October 17th Habitat for Humanity of Montgomery County’s Women Build Committee held a tea and silent auction in Darnestown, Maryland. At this event, the Committee was able to raise over $2,000.00 for next year’s project and renovation.
Olde Key Title would like to thank Ethridge, Quinn, Kemp, McAuliffe, Rowan & Hartinger for donating an item to the silent auction – an estate planning package to work with Caryn Siegel Wetmore, Esq.
To read an article on the successful event, please click here.
Thursday, October 14th, 2010
Mortgage loans are supposed to be modified more than ever before in an effort to help consumers avoid foreclosure. The goal is to assist consumers, who through no fault of their own, due to deflation of their home value, to remain in their homes, which would help to stabilize the overall home market which effects everyone. Further, the goal is to ease tight credit and improve the flow of credit and increase the borrowing authority of the FDIC and NCUA (National Credit Union Association). The benefits offered to consumers and lenders are tempered by consumer protection and fraud prevention provisions enforced by the National Mortgage Fraud Task Force in the Department of Justice.
Modification of a homeowner’s original loan terms includes reducing the rate as low as 2%, fixing an adjustable rate, increasing the term up to 40 years and even reducing the principal balance.
Typically, modifications made the terms more favorable but added on any unpaid principal, interest and penalties to a consumers mortgage balance, essentially causing the property to be even more “underwater”. More recently, lenders are implementing a home retention program which includes an “earned principal forgiveness” of up to 30% of the loan balance to reward a consumer for living up to the modification terms. Unfortunately, the lenders lack the processes or staff to efficiently handle the loan modification applications. The idea of modification is talked about more than it is being implemented.
To read more about loan modification resources, eligibility, etc. please click here. Olde Key Title provides a number of additional resources on our website; you can find such resources by clicking here.
Sunday, October 10th, 2010
On October 1, 2010, the Maryland General and Limited Power of Attorney Act went into effect. According to an article in The Washington Post by Harvey S. Jacobs, this new act, with its new changes detailed below, “make it more difficult to delegate a power of attorney…; this tool can no longer be regarded as a last-minute alternative to attending a real estate closing.”
A power of attorney “is a written document that grants authority to an agent to act in the place of a principal. Powers of attorney are most useful in real estate transactions when one party to a transaction is unable or unwilling to personally attend the closing…” or sign documents that are related to buying, selling, or refinancing a home. It is very important to remember that powers of attorney should only be granted to persons “who you trust and who are able and willing to carry out your wishes.”
The Maryland General and Limited Power of Attorney Act now requires that each power of attorney be signed by the principal before a notary and two witnesses, all of whom must sign in each other’s presence.” Additionally, Maryland has now adopted a statutory agent’s certification (a separate document) “that title underwriters are requiring agents to sign, have notarized and recorded along with the original power of attorney prior to recording any documents they signed as agent.” This certification certifies that to the agent’s knowledge, the principal is alive and has not revoked the power of attorney which grants the agent to act on the principal’s behalf.
To read the article in its entirety, please click here.
If you need a new power of attorney drafted, please contact us and we would be happy to assist you.
Monday, October 4th, 2010
According to AARP’s October 2010 article titled “Seeking ‘Missing’ Pension Beneficiaries” you may be “one of the estimated 36,000 Americans who have money owed to them from pension programs”. “Nearly $197 million in unclaimed pension benefits is waiting for its rightful owners.” What do you have to lose? You can quickly search if you are one of the estimated 36,000 Americans by going to search.pbgc.gov/mp/. By going to this website, you may search “by your name, state or company.” Click here to read the entire article.
Saturday, October 2nd, 2010
Olde Key Title works with and is fortunate to receive astute legal guidance from the law firm, Ethridge, Quinn, Kemp, McAuliffe, Rowan & Hartinger. Paul H. Ethridge, a partner with Ethridge Quinn, was named one of seven super lawyers in Maryland with regard to alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in the Corporate Counsel September/October 2010 edition of Super Lawyers. Currently, Paul serves as a Special Mediator and Special Master to the Circuit Court for Montgomery County, Maryland. He is also part of a group of Maryland’s leading attorneys, mediators and arbitrators that formed ADR Maryland, a non-profit service that offers an alternative process for effective dispute resolution. To learn more about Paul H. Ethridge, please click here.
Congratulations to Paul from Olde Key Title!
The Maryland General Assembly passed a number of laws that went into effect on October 1, 2010. One law in particular effects many of us, and many of us have probably already heard about the new law but may not know all of its details. This new law prohibits drivers from using a cell phone without a hands-free device while operating a motor vehicle in the State of Maryland. The exceptions to this law are the following: (1) calls to 911 or other law enforcement agencies and (2) drivers may turn on/off a hand-held cell phone to start/end a call that they will be using a hands-free device for.
This law is a secondary offense which means that a driver must first be pulled over for a primary offense such as speeding or reckless driving. The fines and points associated with this new law are the following: (1) the first offense will carry a $40.00 fine; (2) subsequent offenses will each carry a $100.00 fine; (3) no points will be given for a first offense unless the offense contributed/caused a crash; and (4) one point will be given for each subsequent offense.
Please share this important information with all of your Maryland friends and family.