8 Things Every Title Professional Should Know in 2015: #6 Compliance Expectations

So – you’ve researched financial stability and understand liability. You’ve discovered that you may need to make some adjustments. Perhaps it's time to jump ship. Maybe you still have unanswered questions. But what’s certain is that you definitely need to know what’s expected of you and your company very, very soon.

Atlantis recently interviewed our in-house compliance counsel, Marx Sterbcow, Esq., managing attorney of Sterbcow Law Group LLC and got him to share his thoughts on the industry as it navigates through TRID.

(Q) From your experience and observations, what are the most fatal compliance issues agencies routinely make?

(A) The most fatal compliance issue that title agencies are making today is waiting for someone else to tell them what the new expectations are going to be. The companies that are waiting for banks/lenders to tell them what to do are already far behind and most won’t recover because they won’t have enough time to implement the safety and soundness requirements that are now expected of them.

(Q) What aspects of the new TILA – RESPA Regulations do you think complicate the role of tile insurance agencies in the closing process?

(A) The Lenders/Banks who issue Closing Disclosures to (A) Purchasers will be a big challenge for most title insurance agencies due to technological issues in the software collaboration process with the many different software integration systems across the Country. There won’t be any single portal system in place and lender-vendor collaborations will require many title agencies to have a full-time IT person on staff to deal with the number of various integrations. Many title agencies will not be able to collaborate in time with lenders which will cause them to be locked out of the closing process.

(Q) What resources do those new to the title world need to be prepared for the changing landscape?

(A) In today’s environment companies want to aspire to be a Tier 1 Vendor (i.e. a vendor who is deemed a critical vendor) because if you aren’t designated as a Tier 1 Vendor then you will be capped out in the orders you receive from banks/lenders.

A Tier 1 Vendor will have

  • a SSAE 16 certification

  • outside legal counsel

  • monthly marketing/advertising compliance certification

  • IT department to help

  • social media monitoring program

  • consumer complaint resolutions division

  • encrypted email & test system

  • vendor report card system

The companies that attain the Tier 1 Vendor designation will be in business but those who don’t achieve that Tier will be hampered in their ability to sustain or grow their business.

(Q) If an agent has been with Company A for x amount of years and is now faced with the possibility of moving to Company B, what should he/she be aware of or ultimately consider before making that transition?

(A) The number one thing they need to look at is how serious the company is with their vendor management compliance program. I would seek out companies who have achieved an SSAE 16 Certification because this tells me the company has invested into their operation and they understand how important it is to ensure that their bank/lender clients are protected. Many bank and lender compliance consulting companies are actively telling their bank/lender clients to select title agencies who have attained a SSAE 16 certification right. Also ask the company you are looking at if they are finished implementing their vendor management program or if they will continue to build on what they in place in addition to the SSAE 16.

The Atlantis Organization and ANS Title is fully compliant and will continue to work within the guidelines set by the CFPB. What about you? Is your agency ready?

If you're still unsure or want to discuss your options, give us a call.

(516) 829 7100


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