Code of the District of Columbia

§ 42–825.01. Mortgage relief.

(a) In accordance with [§ 7-2304(b)(15)], and notwithstanding the any provision of Chapter 11 of Title 26, or any other provision of District law, during a period of time for which the Mayor has declared a public health emergency pursuant to § 7-2304.01, and for 60 days thereafter, a mortgage lender that makes or holds" a residential mortgage loan or commercial mortgage loan under the jurisdiction of the Commissioner of the Department of Insurance, Securities, and Banking, shall develop a deferment program for borrowers that, at a minimum:

(1) Grants at least a 90-day deferment of the monthly payment of principal and interest on a mortgage for borrowers;

(2) Waives any late fee, processing fee, or any other fees accrued during the pendency of the public health emergency; and

(3) Does not report to a credit bureau any delinquency or other derogatory information that occurs as a result of the deferral.

(b) The mortgage lender shall establish application criteria and procedures for borrowers to apply for the deferment program. An application shall be made available online and by telephone.

(c) The mortgage lender shall approve each application in which a borrower:

(1) Demonstrates to the mortgage lender evidence of a financial hardship resulting directly or indirectly from the public health emergency, including an existing delinquency or future ability to make payments; and

(2) Agrees in writing to pay the deferred payments within:

(A) A reasonable time agreed to in writing by the applicant and the mortgage lender; or

(B) If no reasonable time can be agreed to pursuant to subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, 5 years from the end of the deferment period, or the end of the original term of the mortgage loan, whichever is earlier.

(d)(1) A mortgage lender who receives an application for deferment pursuant to this section shall retain the application, whether approved or denied, for at least 3 years after final payment is made on the mortgage or the mortgage is sold, whichever occurs first.

(2) Upon request, a mortgage lender shall make an application for deferment available to the Commissioner.

(3)(A)(i) A mortgage lender who approves an application for deferment pursuant to this section shall, on or before May 8, 2020, provide to the Commissioner, notice of all approved applications on a form prescribed by the Commissioner and such notice shall include the percentage of mortgage deferment approved for and accepted by each borrower.

(ii) After the initial submission prescribed in this paragraph, a mortgage lender who approved an application for deferment pursuant to this section shall provide the Commissioner with a list of all new approvals in 15-day intervals for the duration of the public health emergency and for 60 days thereafter.

(iii) The Commissioner may request information on the number and nature of approvals between 15-day intervals.

(B) The Commissioner shall maintain a publicly available list of approved commercial mortgage loan deferral applications. The requirement of this subparagraph may be satisfied by posting to the Department of Insurance, Securities, and Banking website.

(e) A mortgage lender shall be prohibited from requiring a lump sum payment from any borrower making payments under a deferred payment program pursuant to subsection (c)(2)(A) of this section, subject to investor guidelines.

(f) A person or business whose application for deferment is denied may file a written complaint with the Commissioner. The Commissioner is authorized to investigate the complaint in accordance with § 26-1112.

(g) A borrower receiving a mortgage deferral pursuant to subsection (b) of this section on a property that has a tenant shall, within 5 days of the approval, provide notice of the deferral to all tenants, and:

(1) Shall provide a reduction in the rent charged for the property to any qualified tenant during the period of time in which there is mortgage deferral in place. The amount of the reduction shall be proportional to the deferred mortgage amount paid by the borrower to the mortgage lender as a percentage of total expenses reported in the borrower's 2019 Income and Expense report provided to the Office of Tax and Revenue; and.

(2) May require the qualified tenant to repay the difference in the amount of the rent as stated in the lease and the reduced rent, without interest or fees, within 18 months, or upon cessation of the tenancy, whichever occurs first; and

(3) The borrower shall not report to a credit bureau any delinquency or other derogatory information that occurs as a result of a qualified tenant's compliance with the terms of this subsection.

(h) To the extent necessary to conform with the provisions of this section, the exemptions in § 26-1102, are waived for the duration of the public health emergency.

(i) To the extent necessary to conform with the provisions of this section, the provisions in § 42-1903.13(c)(1), are waived for the duration of the public health emergency.

(j) This section shall not apply to a property for which, as of March 11, 2020, a mortgage lender initiated a foreclosure action or exercised its right to accelerate the balance and maturity date of the loan, on or before March 11, 2020.

(k) A mortgage lender that violates the provisions of this section shall be subject to the penalties prescribed in section 19 of the Mortgage Lender and Broker Act of 1996, effective September 9, 1996 (D.C. Law 11-155; D.C. Official Code § 26-1118).

(l) For the purposes of this section, the term:

(1) "Commercial mortgage loan" means a loan for the acquisition, construction, or development of real property, or a loan secured by collateral in such real property, that is owned or used by a person, business, or entity for the purpose of generating profit, and shall include real property used for single-family housing, multifamily housing, retail, office space, and commercial space.

(2) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of the Department of Insurance, Securities, and Banking.

(3) "Mortgage lender" means any person that makes a mortgage loan to any person or that engages in the business of servicing mortgage loans for others or collecting or otherwise receiving mortgage loan payments directly from borrowers for distribution to any other person. The term "mortgage lender" does not include the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, the Federal National Mortgage Association, or the Government National Mortgage Association.

(4) Repealed.

(5) "Qualified tenant" means a tenant of a property owned or controlled by a person or entity receiving a mortgage deferral under subsection (a) of this section that has notified the landlord of an inability to pay all or a portion of the rent due as a result of the public health emergency.

(Apr. 10, 2020, D.C. Act 23-286, § 202, 0 DCR 0; May 4, 2020, D.C. Act 23-299, § 2(a), 0 DCR 0.)