ALTA Board Approves Revision to Best Practices

March 7, 2019

ALTA’s Board of Governors on Feb. 21 approved a motion to revise the Title Insurance & Settlement Company Best Practices to include a requirement for companies to be listed in the ALTA Registry.

Based on the amendment, Pillar 1 of the Best Practices will include the following requirement:

  • Establish and maintain a unique ALTA Registry Universal ID (ALTA ID) using the ALTA Registry platform for each settlement office location (subject to those business entity types supported by the ALTA Registry).

The revision, which was recommended by ALTA’s Best Practices Executive Committee, is under a 30-day comment period that ends April 12. Comments may be sent to bestpractices@alta.org.

The changes would affect the Best Practices Framework and Assessment Procedures.

ALTA’s Best Practices is designed to assist lenders in managing third-party vendors and vendors and title companies. Pillar 1 requires title companies to maintain licenses for doing business in the title industry. This includes state insurance licenses, doing business requirements and ALTA policy forms license. For lenders, this helps lenders determine they are working with legitimate title and settlement providers.

The ALTA Registry is a free, searchable online database of underwriter-confirmed title agencies, settlement companies and underwriter direct offices. Lenders use data from the ALTA Registry to obtain underwriter-verified information about a title agent’s legal entity name, location and contact information.

Adding a requirement that an agent maintains its listing in the ALTA Registry furthers the purpose of Pillar 1. This requirement would assist lenders in conducting vendor due diligence and determining they are obtaining a valid title policy from an authorized agent and a verified location.

ALTA anticipates making additional modifications to Best Practices later this year.


Contact ALTA at 202-296-3671 or communications@alta.org.

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