American Land Title Association
Print Friendly
Home  >  News Room
News Room

SoftPro is the nation's leading provider of Real Estate Closing and Title Insurance software

North American Title Insurance Company is a seasoned title insurance underwriter that has been helping customers achieve the American dream of homeownership for more than 50 years. In the past several years, we have become known as the “underwriter next door,� because our associates are always easy to reach and our processes are, at all times, quick and straightforward. Our agency application process is fast and transparent for qualified agents. NATIC offers a one-hour underwriting response guarantee that is unparallelled in our industry. In addition, we value our agents based on their title industry knowledge and experience, not just on profits alone.

Government News

FTC Staff and Justice Department Urge Massachusetts Legislature to Allow Nonlawyers to Compete with Lawyers For Real Estate Closing Services

October 12, 2004

   Related Information
Text of the Comments
Comments of the Staff of the Office of Policy Planning, the Bureau of Economics, and the Bureau of Competition of the Federal Trade Commission, and the Antitrust Division of the United States Department of Justice, To The Honorable Paul Kujawski, Member, Massachusetts House of Representatives, Concerning Proposed Massachusetts House Bill 180, Which Would Authorize Non-Attorneys to Perform Certain Real Estate Settlement Services. [pdf]

Federal Trade Commission staff and the Justice Department today announced a letter urging the Massachusetts House of Representatives to adopt a bill that would enable nonlawyers to compete with lawyers to perform certain real estate closing services. According to the agencies, competition is likely to lower prices and enable consumers to receive better services.

The bill, HB 180, would amend the General Laws of Massachusetts to authorize nonlawyers to perform real estate closing services, such as drafting deeds, mortgages, leases and agreements; examining titles; issuing title certification or policies of title insurance; and representing lenders as their closing agents.

“As the staff analysis shows, HB 180 is likely to benefit consumers in Massachusetts by encouraging competition that leads to lower prices, more convenient services, and the option to use Internet-based loan services,” noted FTC Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras.

“The bill likely will lower prices for real estate closings for Massachusetts consumers in two ways,” said R. Hewitt Pate, Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Justice Department's Antitrust Division. “First, consumers will be able to choose to use a nonlawyer instead of an attorney for their closings. Historically, lawyers charge more than lay providers. Second, with competition from nonlawyers, lawyers’ fees are likely to decrease.”

The letter also pointed to state supreme court decisions and scholarly studies indicating that consumers are not likely to face additional risk of harm from nonlawyer closings.

The Commission vote authorizing staff to file the comments was 5-0.

Source: FTC

Print Friendly

How To Find Us:
American Land Title Association
1800 M Street, NW, Suite 300S
Washington, D.C. 20036-5828
P. 202.296.3671 F. 202.223.5843
Copyright © 2004-2016 American Land Title Association. All rights reserved.
SecurityMetrics for PCI Compliance, QSA, IDS, Penetration Testing, Forensics, and Vulnerability Assessment