Volunteers Needed to Educate Members on Best Practice Implementation

January 17, 2013

The American Land Title Association recently published its “Title Insurance and Settlement Company Best Practices” as a guide to help members highlight the policies and procedures the title industry uses to ensure a positive and compliant real estate settlement experience for lenders and consumers.

The Best Practices were created in response to new market demands as lenders are being fined for the acts of their third-party service providers. This has caused lenders to require more information from the service providers—including title agents, settlement agents and attorneys—they conduct business with.

The next step is to educate members on how to implement various aspects of the Best Practices. To do this, we need the help of our valued members. If you would like to get involved in the conversation and participate in educational opportunities on Best Practices, please email Jeremy Yohe. ALTA’s director of communications. Include information about which part of the Best Practices you would like to address. Specifically, we are looking for presentation proposals for Title Topics, our free, 30-minute webinar we offer to members each month.

If you are not a member of ALTA and would like to be involved in the conversation and participate in educational opportunities on Best Practices, the first thing you should do is become an associate member of ALTA.

These presentations should provide information and tips on how to comply with different aspects of the Best Practices and must not be sales pitches. Proposals may be meshed with similar submissions. ALTA staff and leadership will review submissions with the intention of forming well-rounded webinars.

Here’s a calendar of when we plan to address various Best Practice categories:

  • February: Procedures and controls for escrow trust accounts allowing for electronic verification of reconciliation
  • March: Privacy and information security program to protect non-public personal information
  • April: Adoption of standard real estate settlement procedures and policies that ensure compliance with federal and state consumer financial laws
  • May: Procedures related to title policy production, delivery, reporting and premium remittance
  • June: Maintaining appropriate professional liability insurance and fidelity coverage
  • July: Procedures for resolving consumer complaints
Within each Best Practice categories, there are additional components of the standards. Please review the Best Practices, as your company may be able to provide needed guidance on items such as how a small shop can segregate reconciliation duties or how to establish a disaster management plan.

Market demands have changed, but together we will remain a key component of the real estate transaction.

Contact ALTA at 202-296-3671 or [email protected].