The Nassau County Bar Association in Mineola aims to help...

The Nassau County Bar Association in Mineola aims to help homeowners struggling to make their housing payments. Credit: Hector Herrera

The Nassau County Bar Association will hold a free legal clinic Wednesday for people who fear losing their homes to foreclosure from 3 to 6 p.m. in Mineola.

The goal of the event is to help attendees with questions about foreclosure, loan modifications and bankruptcy. Attorneys can also help with landlord-tenant issues and other real estate-related concerns.

Attendees with an upcoming court date can learn about what they need to prepare, and those who have only recently missed payments can get help with letters they’ve received from lenders, said Madeline Mullane, director of the Mortgage Foreclosure Assistance Project at the bar association.

“If you have any questions whatsoever that you want to have answered by a reliable source instead of the internet or someone you know, that’s what we want to do — provide consistent and up-to-date information about the process and court procedures and to give people a realistic perspective,” Mullane said.

Attorneys providing help at the clinic do not provide free legal representation, but the bar association can make referrals to attorneys offering free help.

The clinic will be held at the bar association’s office at 15th and West streets.

Assistance will be available in English and Spanish, and the bar association has access to interpreter services for other languages.

Interested attendees can register by calling 516-747-4070, ext. 1229, or by emailing probono@nassaubar.org. Walk-ins are welcome.

Foreclosure cases are on the rise, but comparisons with previous years are still complicated by the state’s foreclosure moratorium, which expired Jan. 15, 2022.

Statewide, there were 15,235 residential and commercial foreclosure filings in the 12-month period ending Oct. 9, 2023, according to an annual report from the New York State Unified Court System.

That was roughly double the number that occurred in the previous 12-month stretch. But that previous period included roughly three months when New York’s pandemic-era moratorium on foreclosure filings was still in effect.

In 2019, before the moratorium started, there were 21,485 residential and commercial foreclosure filings, according to the court system.

“Things are not quite at pre-COVID, levels but they’re getting there,” Mullane said. “They’re definitely getting closer to what foreclosure looked like in 2017 and 2018, which was very busy with very voluminous court calendars.”

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