ALTA President to Testify Before Congress on Wednesday

April 14, 2015

Diane Evans NTP will testify before a subcommittee of the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday, April 15 during a hearing titled “Examining Regulatory Burdens on Non-Depository Financial Institutions.” The hearing starts at 1 p.m. ET.

The Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee is holding the hearing to examine the impact of regulatory reform for non-depositories institutions.

Click here to watch the testimony live.

Here's the complete witness list:

  • Justin G. Friedman, Director, Federal Government Affairs, American Financial Services Association
  • Diane Evans, Vice President, Land Title Guarantee Company, on behalf of the American Land Title Association
  • Dennis Shaul, Chief Executive Officer, Community Financial Services Association
  • Paulina McGrath, President, Republic State Mortgage, on behalf of the Community Mortgage Lenders of America
  • Mitria Wilson, Vice President, Government Affairs and Senior Counsel, Center for Responsible Lending

Evans will discuss modifications and clarifications that are needed to improve the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s TILA-RESPA integrated disclosure rule. Evans plans to inform the subcommittee that ALTA has asked that the CFPB follow a “hold harmless” period of restrained enforcement and liability through the end of 2015 following the Aug. 1 implementation of TRID. In a letter to the CFPB, Rep. Randy Neugebauer, chair of the subcommittee, and Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, chair of the Housing and Insurance Subcommittee, said a delayed enforcement period “would allow parties to better understand the changes associated with TRID.”

Additionally, Evans will inform the subcommittee that the TRID rule prohibits the industry from accurately disclosing the fees for title insurance. State law and regulation in half of the United States dictates that consumers must pay title insurance rates that are different than how the CFPB requires industry to inaccurately disclose these fees to the consumer. Evans will tell Congress that the problem can be resolved by allowing lenders and settlement agents to disclose the actual title insurance premium rates on the Closing Disclosure.

“Allowing consumers to receive disclosures that provide accurate title insurance premiums will better serve the Bureau’s goal of helping homebuyers understand the true costs of owning a home,” Evans said.

Evans also will encourage members of the subcommittee to support legislation to improve the way that the bureau protects consumers and works with businesses. Specifically, Evans will encourage Congress to pass H.R. 1195, legislation introduced by Reps. Pittenger and Rep. Denny Heck that would establish a small business advisory board at CFPB. This would allow nonbanks and smaller institutions to report, advise or consult with the bureau on a regular basis. Instead of following the calculation the CFPB prescribes in its rule,

Second, Evans will ask Congress to approve legislation that directs the CFPB to establish procedures for issuing advisory opinions to financial service providers that it regulates. Advisory opinions provide certainty to those complying with federal consumer financial law in real-life situations.

Finally, Evans plans to encourage Congress to consider improving transparency at the CFPB. This can be achieved by having the CFPB publish public comments to bulletins, guidance documents and enforcement actions.

“Soliciting transparent public comments on issues promote discussion that leads to better long-term policy outcomes,” Evans said.

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