Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation continues fight against predatory
January 10, 2006 Media Release
(Raleigh, NC) – The Z. Smith
Reynolds Foundation announced a new grant
award of $125,000 to Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC) in support of its
effort to combat predatory lending and help working families save their
homes from foreclosure.
The grant is continued funding for a two-year LANC project that has saved
nearly $7M in home equity, assisted hundreds of families to avert
foreclosure, and aggressively brought abusive lenders to heel in North
The Foundation designated the grant in support of LANC’s Mortgage
Foreclosure Project (MFP), a specialized unit of attorneys and advocates
with extensive knowledge of foreclosure defense and predatory lending law. The MFP vigorously defends foreclosure actions and analyzes loans and
mortgage documents with an eye towards uncovering abusive lending practices,
including illegal rates, charges, and yields that are often hidden or not
fully explained to the borrower.
“The continued financial support of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation has been
critical to this vital, legal services project,” said George Hausen, LANC’s
executive director. “Foreclosures in North Carolina are up nearly 200%
over the past few years, and the Foundation’s enlightened understanding of
the problem and its scope has resulted in our ability to expand our response
to help hundreds more families and to leverage the interest and financial
support of other critical players."
The Z. Smith
Reynolds Foundation was established in 1936 and has given
more than $366 million in grants to projects in all 100 North Carolina
counties. The Foundation now gives special attention to the following
focus areas – community economic development; democracy and civic
engagement; environment; pre-collegiate education; and social justice and
Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC) is a statewide, nonprofit law firm
that provides free legal services in civil matters to eligible, low-income
people in all 100 counties in North Carolina through 24, geographically
located offices in North Carolina. LANC’s clients typically have an
annual income of 125% or less of the federally established poverty levels.
George Hausen (Executive Director, LANC, Raleigh, NC),
Dock Kornegay (Director, Public Relations & Development, Raleigh, NC);
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Legal Aid of North Carolina is a statewide, nonprofit law firm that
provides free legal services in civil matters to low-income people in
order to ensure equal access to justice and to remove legal barriers
to economic opportunity.