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 ICYMI: Digital Edition of December TitleNews
January 26, 2023

The December edition of TitleNews profiles new ALTA President Jack Rattikin III, who is following the footsteps of his grandfather and father to lead the association. Other articles of note include ALTA Supports Federal Effort to Combat Deed Fraud, Protect Homeowners; ALTA ONE Attendees Find New Horizons; CATIC Releases Its First Inclusion Report; Freddie Says Rapidly Rising Rates, Declining Demand Driving Housing Market Slowdown; Bots are Not Coming for Your Job; and Federal Appeals Court Rules CFPB Funding Structure Unconstitutional.

New York Issues RON Regulations
January 26, 2023

The New York State Department of State issued regulations for remote online notarizations (RON) that went into effect Jan. 25.

 The Docket: Illinois Court Holds Title Claims Exempt From Complete Defense Rule
January 26, 2023

Michael R. O’Donnell, co-managing partner of the law firm Riker Danzig LLP, and James Mazewski, an associate with the firm, provided today’s review of a decision by an Illinois appellate court that held title insurance claims were exempt from Illinois’ “complete defense rule.” Read on to learn why this decision is important to the title industry.

An Introduction to Digital Closings for Consumers
January 25, 2023

Thanks to innovations by the title and settlement services industry, consumers are able to close on their dream home from the comfort of their couch in most cases. According to a 2022 ALTA Digital Closing Survey, 62% of companies offering remote online notarization believe this offering will increase over the next year. Because of this, it's important to educate customers about the process. Use this video to introduce your customers to digital closings.

Wire Fraud Advisory: Vacant Property Fraud
January 24, 2023

Real estate transactions have been a prime target of cybercrime over the past decade, and there is little sign of change in this focus, even as the housing market slows. Instead, fraudsters continue to evolve their scam and money laundering tactics to avoid detection. CertfID reports that the latest trend involves vacant lots or unencumbered properties. Read on for educational resources from ALTA to help consumers protect their money.

ALTA Publishes Major Revision to Best Practices
January 24, 2023

Changes to the ALTA Title Insurance and Settlement Company Best Practices go into effect May 23, 2023. Title and settlement companies may implement the new version of the Best Practices whenever they are ready. Any assessments—whether first-time assessments or renewals—completed after the effective date should use the version 4.0 framework. The significant changes involve escrow accounting, protection of non-public personal information and the settlement process.

Texas AG Investigating Home Title Lock for Potentially Misleading Consumers 
January 24, 2023

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is investigating Home Title Lock for potentially violating the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act by misleading consumers with deceptive statements concerning the prevalence of home title theft.

Use These Wire Fraud Education Resources
January 24, 2023

ALTA provides several resources to help title and settlement companies protect against wire fraud and to raise awareness about the threat with customers.

ALTA Best Practices: Review of Changes and Impact on Your Operation
January 23, 2023

New digital payment options, increasing fraud threats and new regulations and laws, as well as changes to business and market needs led to recent updates to the ALTA Best Practices. The changes are focused on the continual improvement to operations and primarily involve escrow accounting, and privacy and information security programs to protect non-public information, as well as an overhaul to enhance the closing and settlement process. Register for this SoftPro-sponsored webinar to get an overview of the changes, when the revisions will go into effect and the impact on certification.

 Share This Video and Help Explain Benefits of Title Insurance
January 19, 2023

ALTA recently created this new animated video that explains how title insurance protects a consumer’s property rights. The video outlines a few simple examples to help consumers understand the benefits of title insurance. Use this video to help educate your customers about the benefits of title insurance.

 Most ALTA Members Not Covered by CFPB Proposal for Consumer Contracts
January 19, 2023

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on Jan. 11 announced a proposed rule that would create a registry of certain contract terms and conditions. This proposal would require certain nonbanks to annually submit information when their standard contracts impose limitations on consumer rights, including waivers of legal claims, choice of venue clauses, limitations on class actions, arbitration agreements and other legal waivers. Read on for analysis from ALTA as to why most ALTA members should be excluded from this proposal as they are not considered covered persons.

Old Republic Title CEO to Retire
January 19, 2023

Old Republic National Title Insurance Co. announced that Chief Executive Officer Mark Bilbrey will retire at the end of January. Bilbrey served as ALTA's 2005 president.

Second City to Debut at ALTA SPRINGBOARD
January 19, 2023

Whether you’ve been to ALTA SPRINGBOARD in the past or this will be your first time at the event, 2023 is the year you want to attend! Straight from Chicago, the Second City Works sketch comedy improv troop will be on hand at ALTA SPRINGBOARD. From the same Second City comedy theater that produced some of the most influential comedians, including Steve Carell, Dan Aykroyd, Tina Fey, Bill Murray and Amy Sedaris, Second City Works provides transformative training methods that help you build the skills necessary to make your company successful.

Doma, Paymints.io Partner to Reduce Wire Fraud and Paper Checks
January 19, 2023

Doma Holdings Inc. added digital payment solution provider paymints.io to its AgentMarketplace vendor partnership program to reduce the risk of wire fraud and allow homebuyers to digitally deposit earnest money. 

MISMO Announces 2023 Board of Directors
January 19, 2023

MISMO board members represent a cross-section of the residential and commercial real estate finance industry. 

 Bots are Not Coming for Your Job
January 17, 2023

It is a fear almost as old as technology itself. Any time technology in any industry takes a step forward, it tends to eliminate the need for a human to do something manually. Naturally, this can prompt the question “Will this technology eliminate my job?” Read on to learn how automation can give time back to employees and companies.

 More Than Insurance and Closings
January 17, 2023

We should be proud of the many socioeconomic efforts ALTA and its members are involved in. As we know, the title insurance industry is more than curing title defects, insuring lien priority and wiring funds. It’s about our neighbours and communities. Helping each other is what this industry is all about.

Indecomm Expands E-recording Capability
January 17, 2023

The company now offers electronic capabilities in 1,900 jurisdictions. 

Security Title Hires South Carolina State Manager
January 17, 2023

The Security Title Guarantee Corporation recently hired Toni Carroll to serve as South Carolina state manager and chief training officer.

ALTA Welcomes New Members
January 17, 2023

ALTA is pleased to announce new and associate members, as well as real estate attorneys, who have recently joined ALTA. Over the past month, ALTA gained 106 new members, including 56 title agencies and 37 real estate attorneys. ALTA had a record 6,510 member companies in 2022. Read on to view a map of membership. Not a member? Click here to join today. You can check out member benefits here.

 Industry Family Legacy: Jack Rattikin III Follows Footsteps of Grandfather, Father as ALTA President
January 12, 2023

Growing up in a conservative suburb near Fort Worth, Texas, Jack Rattikin III learned strong family values steeped in hard work, respect and integrity. His “Leave It to Beaver” household included his mother, father, three siblings and a dog. Read on to learn more about Rattikin III, who in October became the third generation of his family to be named ALTA president.

Stewart Acquires Ohio-based Elite Family of Companies
January 12, 2023

Stewart Title announced the acquisition of Elite Family of Companies, which is comprised of Elite Land Title, LLC Aspen Land Title Agency LLC and Citizens Land Title Agency LLC.

CATIC Acquires Lane Guide Lenders On Line
January 12, 2023

Lane Guide Lenders is a provider of data on individual lenders and the lending industry.

Sekady Names Vice President of Sales
January 12, 2023

Tony Codina brings experience in enterprise sales and customer success, and will lead sales and business development for Sekady products and services.

HURRY! Early Bird Rate Ends Jan. 31
January 11, 2023

This just in: We have extended our Early Bird rate for ALTA SPRINGBOARD! Register by Jan. 31 and save $100 on your member or non-member registration. And don’t miss your opportunity to stay with your friends and save even more: Our room block is going fast, so reserve your room today.

Tangible Risk Mitigation Tactics to Thwart Cyberattacks
January 11, 2023

Title and settlement companies report that the volume of cyberattacks have either increased or remained the same last year when compared to 2020. Because of this, title professionals should know essential risk-mitigation processes to protect against wire fraud and other cyber threats.

ALTA Asks FTC to Provide Clear Definition of a 'Junk Fee'
January 10, 2023

ALTA submitted a letter in response to the Federal Trade Commission’s advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) to address certain deceptive or unfair acts or practices relating to fees. In its letter, ALTA said the FTC should provide a specific and concise definition of a “junk fee” in the next step of the rulemaking process. Detailed guidance is important so industry has clear rules of the road and can set appropriate expectations for consumers.

Unsettled Commercial Markets Dissipating in 2023, MBA Reports
January 10, 2023

Commercial and multifamily mortgage originators are experiencing an unsettled market for borrowing and lending but anticipate those conditions will slowly stabilize over the course of 2023, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) 2023 Commercial Real Estate Finance (CREF) Outlook Survey, 

 FTC Proposes Rule to Ban Noncompete Clauses
January 10, 2023

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Jan. 5 proposed a rule that would ban employers from imposing noncompete agreements with their workers. The proposed rule would apply to independent contractors and anyone who works for an employer, whether paid or unpaid. It would also require employers to rescind existing noncompetes and actively inform workers that they are no longer in effect.

Monarch Title Names New President
January 10, 2023

Christy Lyon has been promoted to president at Missouri-based Monarch Title Company Inc. Chuck Bowman said said he will remain as CEO/owner, but promoted Lyon as part of his succession plan. He plans to retire at the end of 2023.

LodeStar: Lenders Using Closing Fee Tech Required One Cure Every 22,000 Quotes
January 10, 2023

Mortgage loan originators using the closing fee calculator technology of LodeStar Software Solutions in 2022 averaged one inaccuracy requiring a cure out of every 22,000 fee estimates or quotes, the company reported.

Save on Three of ALTA’s 2023 Events!
January 9, 2023

To help you make new connections, expand your knowledge and create better business in 2023, we cordially invite you to attend ALTA’s three largest meetings: ALTA SPRINGBOARD, ALTA Advocacy Summit and ALTA ONE. And because you’re an ALTA member, we want to give you a little something special: We’re gifting you a members-only discount for our Three-Pack Special! Register for ALTA’s three major events in 2023 for only $1,325! Offer expires Feb. 3.*

ALTA Decertifies Several 2006 Policy Forms
January 5, 2023

In line with prior guidance, ALTA decertified certain 2006 series policy forms effective Dec. 31, 2022. Read on to learn which forms were decertified, as well as two technical corrections that were issued as the end of last year.

Stewart Announces Promotions in the Legal Department
January 5, 2023

Elizabeth Giddens has assumed the role of chief legal officer and corporate secretary following the planned retirement of John Killea as chief legal officer and chief compliance officer, while Mary Thomas was named chief compliance and regulatory officer for Stewart and Pamela O’Brien was named general counsel of Stewart Title Guaranty Co.

FinCEN Expects to Propose New Anti-money Laundering Rule This Year
January 5, 2023

FinCEN intends to issue a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to address money laundering (AML) threats in the U.S. real estate sector in April, the Department of the Treasury indicated on its website.

 Several County Recording Offices Impacted by Possible Cyberattack
January 5, 2023

A possible cyberattack against a property records management vendor has left several county offices with the inability to allow for searches of their land records or electronically record documents.

Pythonic Obtains SOC2 Certification
January 5, 2023

Pythonic Corp. recently completed a System and Organization Controls (SOC) 2 Type 1 Audit examination for its document identification and data extraction workflow automation system.

 Stewart Settles No-Poach Allegations in New York
January 5, 2023

Stewart Title Guaranty Co. agreed to pay $2.5 million to settle allegations it entered into no-poach agreements with competitors in New York, according to the state’s attorney general (OAG).

Earn CE/CLE at ALTA Commercial Network
January 5, 2023

Feb. 15-17, 2023 | San Diego, CA | Register Today
Looking for CE/
CLE? Register for the ALTA Commercial Network and take advantage of our offerings. Created solely for the commercial title space, this is the event specific to what you do on a daily basis. The event will be held Feb. 15-17, 2023, in San Diego at The Rancho Bernardo Inn.

Protect new homeowners with the right title support services like municipal lien searches, tax certificates, lien release tracking, and more.