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Language Line Services Launches Language Line(R) Direct Connect: New Offering Connects Financial Counselors With Limited-English Clients to Help Save Homes

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Last update: 3:31 p.m. EST Dec. 10, 2008
MONTEREY, Calif., Dec 10, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Language Line Services, the leading provider of interpretation services, today launched Language Line(R) Direct Connect, created to assist financial institutions, government agencies and other organizations communicate with limited-English proficient customers impacted by the mortgage crisis. Language Line Direct Connect, available in over 170 languages, helps organizations save mortgages, increase debt collection and work out more favorable payment terms with their customers, regardless of language.
A recent study by the California Reinvestment Coalition (CRC), reporting that more could be done to keep families in their homes, cited language barriers as the key reason homeowners weren't informed of better repayment options before their loans were foreclosed. Similar research from around the country shows the same conclusions, noted Language Line Services President and COO Louis Provenzano.
"Language barriers are a major roadblock for banks, credit card companies and other organizations trying to communicate with distressed limited-English mortgage holders and credit card customers," said Provenzano. "Language Line Direct Connect ensures that this market segment receives the same level of support as English speaking consumers to discuss payment plans and other alternatives so they don't default on their loans."
With Language Line Direct Connect, financial institutions can utilize Language Line Services interpreters to handle all outbound and inbound credit counseling communications with limited-English customers. For outbound calls, contact is initiated by the interpreter in the customer's preferred language. Once the interpreter makes contact with the customer, an English speaking bank counselor is connected to the call and the interpreter facilitates a three-way conversation regarding the customer's loan and repayment options. If the customer is not reachable, a message is left with in-language instructions for returning the interpreter's call. The number given is a dedicated inbound line for that specific language, ensuring a consistent customer experience. The dedicated inbound line can also be used for all in-language marketing outreach programs regarding available mortgage counseling services.
For more information on Language Line Direct Connect, or to subscribe to the service, please contact your Language Line Services sales representative or Greg Marshall at 1-866-862-5530, email directconnect@languageline.com or visit www.languageline.com/directconnect.


Side Bar: Mortgage Crisis and Limited-English Speakers
-- In the coming year, one out of every 200 home mortgages will be foreclosed upon, with 250,000 new families entering into foreclosure every three months. (Source Mortgage Bankers Association.)
-- There are more than 38 million foreign-born residents and 176 languages spoken in the United States today. (Source U.S. Census Bureau.)
-- At the end of 2002, Latino households held 88.4% or more of their total net worth in home equity. (Source: Rakesh Kochhar, The Wealth of Hispanic Households: 1996 to 2002 at 20 Pew Hispanic Center, 2004).

 

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