Richards Layton & Finger

New Delaware Mortgage Laws

September 21, 2017

The most recent session of the Delaware General Assembly witnessed the passage of a few clean-up bills related to Delaware real estate mortgages. One, Senate Bill 32, was signed by Governor John Carney on August 30, 2017. This legislation requires that a mortgagee or assignee file a notification with the applicable recorder of deeds if the holder changes its notice address from the address stated in the mortgage. Moreover, the legislation provides a safe harbor for any notices going to the address stated in the mortgage prior to the filing of a change of address.

In addition, on July 17, 2017 Governor Carney signed House Bill 76, which extends the effective date of the mandatory foreclosure mediation program for residential foreclosures to actions filed on or before January 18, 2020.

Another new enactment, Senate Bill 52, addresses the satisfaction of Delaware mortgages. Although not yet signed by the Governor, the bill was passed by the General Assembly and is anticipated to be signed soon. For a number of years, Delaware law has permitted the record satisfaction of a mortgage by the filing of an affidavit of a Delaware attorney stating that the final payment of the loan secured by the mortgage in question had been previously made by the attorney. This new legislation expands the current law in two ways. First, it allows a retired Delaware attorney to submit such an affidavit with respect to a mortgage paid while the attorney was in active practice. Second, the new legislation permits a comparable affidavit to be submitted by a Delaware attorney (or retired Delaware attorney) with respect to a partial payment for the release of real estate collateral from a mortgage.

Each of the Acts was, or will be, effective when signed.

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