DeSoto, Manatee and Sarasota Counties Use Mediation Program to Help With High Number of Foreclosures

Jun 22, 2010, 09:14 ET from Collins Center for Public Policy

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., June 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 12th Judicial Circuit of Florida covering DeSoto, Manatee and Sarasota counties is implementing a foreclosure mediation program to provide homeowners and their lenders with an opportunity to resolve the foreclosure case out of court. According to RealtyTrac, the Sarasota-Bradenton area had one foreclosure for every 61 housing units last year.



The Collins Center has partnered with University of South Florida Conflict Resolution Collaborative to manage the 12th Circuit's mediation program. The program is provided at no expense to the home owner.

According to Ned Pope, director of the Collins Center alternative dispute resolution program, "We are pleased to partner with the USF Conflict Resolution Collaborative and bring this program to homeowners in the 12th judicial circuit. The Collins Center is operating mediation programs in four other circuits around Florida and this program has helped prevent thousands of foreclosures. Managed mediation not only benefits the homeowner and lender, it also helps reduce the caseload on already overburdened courts."

Homeowners and lender representatives meet with a Florida Supreme Court certified Circuit Court Mediator who has received special training in mediating residential mortgage foreclosure cases. Homeowners must also meet with an approved mortgage foreclosure counselor as they complete the financial documentation required for the mediation.

The Collins Center for Public Policy is a statewide nonprofit organization that is also managing mediation programs for foreclosures in the 1st, 11th, 19th and 14th circuits.

Since the Collins Center's foreclosure mediation program began in March 2009, the Center has managed approximately 5,900 scheduled mediations. For information on the Collins Center, visit  

The nationally recognized University of South Florida Conflict Resolution Collaborative offers Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Training as well as other courses including Circuit Civil, Family and Dependency Mediation certification training programs which are approved by the Florida Supreme Court, the Florida Bar for attorney CLER, and other organizations for continuing education for other professions.

For information on the USF Conflict Resolution Collaborative, visit


Jon DeVries

Senior Vice President for Communications, Marketing and Development


SOURCE Collins Center for Public Policy