On Sunday Gov. Schwarzenegger signed into law SB 94, effective immediately, which bans loan modification firms from being paid up-front, or even asking to be paid up-front. It also restricts attorneys from representing homeowners in trouble.
For some time the Department of Real Estate was already requiring licensed agents who received advance fees to have contracts approved by the Department. However, once the Notice of Default was recorded, no advance fees were permitted. Generally speaking, attorneys licensed in California were not subject to such prohibitions.
The new law requires that, under all circumstances, the loan modification firm must first fully perform all the services they contract to perform, or represent that they would perform, before being paid. Sounds simple- do the work first, and then get paid, what is wrong with that?