in this issue

By Lisa A. Tyler
National Escrow Administrator

In New York City, many banks require cashier's checks be remitted to pay off existing mortgages, but lately the overnight delivery packages from title agents containing the payoff checks have been arriving at the bank empty.

The payoff lenders have notified the title agents when they receive an envelope without a check, leaving the agent to track down the check with the help of the issuing bank. Read "PAYOFF checks stolen" to discover what you can do to protect the Company from this crime.

Who would collect a Statement of Information from a principal and then not verify the date of birth, place of birth, taxpayer identification numbers and previous addresses contained therein? Believe it or not, in the title industry it happens frequently. Read "VERIFYING the statement of information" to find out how verifying the information in the Statement of Information saved the Company from a potential claim of $600,000.

I do not know about you, but I miss the days where mortgage fraud was the biggest crime plaguing the industry. At least then we could identify the fraudsters and kick them out of our offices so they never darkened our doors again.

Now we have to deal with a new type of criminal — hackers. The frustrating part about hackers is no one knows who they are or when they will strike. You have to be on guard at all times watching for clues; they are trying to steal funds from a transaction and ultimately our Company. Emelia Irish, Accounting Clerk for FNTG's OAC in Houston, shared the details of her experience with a hacker in the story entitled "E–SCAMS!."

The new rules and forms are now in effect, and in the very near future our settlement agents will (if they have not already) start collaborating with lenders to assist them in the completion of the Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure. These are exciting times for the industry and being prepared is essential in providing consumers with a seamless closing experience.

Be sure to answer the monthly CFPB question to make certain you understand the effects of the new rules and forms in your market area!


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