Justice Minister David Ford has approved £60,000 to pay Housing Rights Service specialists to assist people facing repossession when cases go before the courts. The move follows the announcement last summer by Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland of funding of over £500,000 for the Mortgage Debt Advice Service to assist owners in arrears.
The new money will provide for two specialists to give
advice and support in all High Court proceedings in respect of mortgage
repossessions where people face losing their homes. The scheme will also
cover all eviction proceedings in the County Court. The number of
mortgage applications received by the Chancery Division of the High
Court last year was 3,588. A total of 1,775 possession orders were made.
Ford said: "I believe the service provided by Housing Right Service
will be hugely important in supporting some of the most vulnerable in
Mr McCausland said: "As the economic downturn
tightens its grip, advice for those facing mortgage difficulties has
become increasingly sought after and this additional support by the
Department of Justice will complement the work of my department and
demonstrate the real value of joined up government."
Source: Press Association