October 11, 2018

Serving the Legal Needs of a Recovering Puerto Rico

DSNews--David Wharton

On Wednesday, attorneys Stephen M. Hladik, Miguel Maza, Rose Marie Brook, and Steven Horne announced the formation of HMB Law Group, LLC, a new law firm headquartered in the heart of San Juan’s financial district. HMB has been designed from the ground up to meet the dynamic legal challenges of both financial institutions and Puerto Rican community members as the island recovers from the devastating storms.

Specializing in the needs of the real estate finance industry in Puerto Rico and beyond, HMB Law Group will offer a complete suite of legal services. The Default Servicing Department will be headed by founding members Stephen Hladik and Miguel Maza. Hladik is a former Pennsylvania Deputy Attorney General in charge of the Harrisburg office of the state’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, a recognized expert in lending law, mortgage foreclosure and tax sale law, and has represented clients from every sector of the mortgage industry. Maza has practiced in all aspects of consumer finance law for almost a quarter century, successfully representing lenders and creditors in numerous matters across the Territory and in the United States.

Hurricane Maria's impact on Puerto Rico caused $90 billion in damages to the island, and independent study from George Washington University's Milken School of Public Health in August increased the official death toll from 62 to 2,975. In late September, HUD Secretary Ben Carson and Puerto Rico's Governor Ricardo Rosselló announced the formal execution of a $1.5 billion grant agreement to help citizens in Puerto Rico to recover from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, $1 billion of which will be allocated to rebuilding housing.

With many Puerto Rico residents having fled before and after the storm, the island's housing and foreclosure crisis has been exacerbated by the difficulty in communicating with those borrowers—a problem that the newly formed HMB Law Group hopes to help address.

“In addition to my experience as an attorney, I am very happy to apply my years of special servicing experience to work with clients to deliver an effective borrower outreach solution," Horne said. "Many borrowers have left the island; some permanently, some planning to return. We have the ability to quickly locate them and help them to identify the best alternative for their particular situation.”

“I am very pleased to be working with Steve, Rose Marie, and all of the members of the firm," said Maza. "We have put together an all-star team that will make a very positive impact on the island.”

HMB is also a flagship sponsor of PR18, an upcoming industry conference that will gather industry and government leaders in Puerto Rico to help design the next phase of the rebuilding process. To learn more, click on the banner below.


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