Archives: Compliance

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On My Soapbox—Is it Fair to Make Title Agents and Law Firms Prove Compliance with Best Practices?

For those in the title and legal industries, it can be more than a little annoying to have one’s role in representing lenders characterized as merely that of “third-party service provider.”  Title agencies and law firms perform the same trusted services for the lending community today—handling confidential bank client information and millions of dollars of … Continue Reading

Should a Settlement Agency Be Considered a Daycare for Customer Data?

All too often, title and settlement agents give little more than a passing thought to the importance of protecting highly sensitive customer data.  But to the lenders we service, the care and protection of the customer data with which we’re entrusted is extremely important.  That’s because the law unequivocally requires customer data to be protected … Continue Reading

CFPB Updates Guidance on Lender Supervision of Third-Party “Service Providers”

On October 19, 2016, the director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a new bulletin entitled “Compliance Bulletin and Policy Guidance; 2016-02, Service Providers.”  This bulletin is significant for the title industry because it reissues guidance from Bulletin 2012-03, which made it clear that financial institutions are obligated to ensure their business arrangements … Continue Reading

Preparing for the Proverbial Compliance Storm: There Should Be an App for That

If only there was a “Best Practices” app to let us know when your lenders will require a Certification of Compliance. With a “weather app” on your cellphone, rain should never come as a surprise.  One simply looks at the displayed radar images, clicks the “future” tab, and immediately sees where storms are headed and … Continue Reading

When a CPA Assesses Your Compliance with Best Practices, “Review” is a Noun, Not a Verb

Title professionals regularly use the term “review,” but most often it is used as a verb.  (e.g. “I am going to review the Closing Disclosure,” or “You always should carefully review the loan closing instructions.”)  However, over the past year working inside a CPA firm, I have discovered that CPAs also routinely use that same … Continue Reading

Third-Party Certification—Knowing Your Options, Learning the Lingo

In our previous blog, Self-Certification: Buyers and Sellers Beware, I discussed issues surrounding a “self-certification” of compliance with ALTA’s Best Practices, and how that approach could be utilized to comply with some lenders’ requests to demonstrate proof of adoption of the Best Practices standards.  A review of recent lender correspondence requiring some level of compliance indicates that self-certification is an … Continue Reading

ALTA Advocates for Agents by Asking CFPB for Support of Best Practices

For the past 10 years, lenders repeatedly have been asked by their regulators, and recently the CFPB, to demonstrate they are exercising appropriate due diligence and supervision over the title and closing agents who handle their customer’s non-public, personal information. Lenders also are required to demonstrate that closing agents are treating all consumers fairly as … Continue Reading

Self-Certification: Buyers and Sellers Beware

So far, our blog series  has covered “Current Lender Requirements for ALTA Best Practices Adherence,” “An Initial Look at Available Best Practices Adoption Data,” “ALTA Best Practices—Who is Requiring What,” and “Motivating Forces Behind Lender Best Practices Requirements.” In this blog, we’ll look at the pros and cons associated with submitting a “self-certification” of compliance. … Continue Reading