To the Editor:

The May 21 Pipeline piece "Blame the Lawyers" repeatedly refers to a company — Hope Now Modifications LLC — that was recently shut down by the FTC as "Hope Now." While that shortened reference may have been in keeping with American Banker's style, we would like to correct any perception readers may have gotten that the two organizations, Hope Now Modifications and the Hope Now Alliance, are the same. They could not be any more different.

The Hope Now Alliance is a nonprofit industry-backed alliance formed in October 2007 with the support and encouragement of the Treasury Department and Department of Housing and Urban Development. Virtually all of the major mortgage servicers in the U.S. are Hope Now members, and homeowners are never charged for the help they receive.

We are working to educate homeowners to be aware of look-alike and sound-alike operations that solicit a fee from homeowners for counseling and information that is already available free to homeowners through the Hope Now Alliance and its hot line, 1-888-995-HOPE.Faith Schwartz
Executive Director
Hope Now Alliance, Washington

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