In November 2008, Grace B. Pazdan became the first Vermont Poverty Law Fellow. The focus of her two-year fellowship was on the foreclosure crisis in Vermont. She provided a wide range of legal services, from full representation in court to counsel and advice over the phone to low and moderate-income Vermonters facing foreclosure. She also brought predatory lending claims on behalf of Vermont homeowners harmed by unscrupulous lenders and mortgage servicers.
In addition to representing individual homeowners, Grace was also engaged in a variety of outreach and advocacy projects aimed at stemming the tide of foreclosures in the state and strengthening consumer protections for Vermont homeowners. For example, in collaboration with the Vermont Attorney General’s Office, she advocated for legislation that would mandate mediation in all foreclosure cases in order to prevent the loss of homes.
Grace was also committed to increasing the number of Vermont attorneys trained in foreclosure defense and collaborated with the Vermont Volunteer Lawyers Project and the Vermont Bar Association to ensure that Vermonters in need would be able to find competent, effective representation to save their homes. During her Fellowship, in March 2010, Grace was interviewed by Vermont Public Radio about the rising rate of foreclosures in Vermont.
She is now a Staff Attorney with Vermont Legal Aid’s Burlington Office, specializing in foreclosure defense, consumer law and predatory lending litigation.