Senate GOP Adds Dodd-Frank Rewrite to $21B Funding Bill

As reported by Associated Press on Wednesday, Jul. 22, 2015 11:30 am John Boozman WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans are trying to use a must-do spending bill to advance legislation significantly revising a landmark law that tightened regulation of the financial services industry after the 2008 financial crisis. Click here for full...

Joint Disclosure Deadline Proposal Seeks October 3, 2015 Effective Date

As promised, the CFPB has announced, via a proposed amendment, that the effective date of the new Joint Disclosure Rule (TRID) will be Saturday, October 3, 2015.  According to the CFPB, implementation on a weekend will allow software providers the opportunity to test systems in anticipation of the workweek launch. For more information on the CFPB’s announcement, please click here: http://www.consumerfinance.gov/newsroom/cfpb-proposes-two-month-extension-of-know-before-you-owe-mortgage-rule/ Again, the effective date of the new Joint Disclosure is October 3,...

Important Title Insurance Industry-Related Bill Introduced in Congress

Between Best Practices coordination and the TRID implementation deadline, there has not been much room for positive news for independent land title agents.  Fortunately, that is not because there has not been good news!  Lost in the daily news cycle for title insurance was an important piece of federal legislation known as HR 1799 that was introduced by Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) on April 15, 2015 and entitled the Ensure Fair Prices in Title Insurance Act.  Congressman Ellison is a fervent supporter of independent land title agents throughout the United States.  NAILTA members have been working with members of Congress like Representative Ellison to help them understand the difference between independent service providers and those who are affiliated with their referral sources.  This effort has led to the introduction of this landmark bill.  HR 1799 is an important first step in the process of improving competition within the title industry and lowering consumer costs for title insurance. HR 1799 is designed to modify the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) in three areas:  By extending the current statute of limitations for a real estate consumer to sue under RESPA for any violation thereunder from one year to three years from the date of the transaction.  By permitting a competitor in the title insurance industry to sue for damages under RESPA for violations of Section 8’s prohibitions on illegal kickbacks.  By limiting the compensation received by participants in affiliated business arrangements to non-referral compensation only. We are proud to support the bill.  We ask that our members review the enclosed bill. If you want to help us, please contact your...

The Insurance Capital Standards Clarification Act of 2014 (H.R. 5461).

According to our sources on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., proponents of the so-called Mortgage Choice Act (H.R. 3211) have attached their bill to a new piece of federal legislation heading to a roll-call vote today.  The new bill is “The Insurance Capital Standards Clarification Act of 2014” (H.R. 5461).  H.R. 5461 is designed as a means for allowing a depository institution (read: a bank) holding company to avoid the requirement of being regulated by federal banking authorities if they also file holding company registration statements as an insurer and maintain adequate levels of capital in accordance with state regulation for such insurers.  In other words, banks that want to acquire interests in insurance companies can do so in an attempt to avoid minimum capital requirements under the Federal Reserve rules created as a consequence of Dodd-Frank.   If anyone is afraid of banks in the business of title insurance, this is your day for action!   In a procedural move, the GOP proponents of H.R. 3211 have attached their bill to H.R. 5461 to push both through Congress in an attempt to present them as election theater for the upcoming November mid-terms.  A vote on the whole package of legislation will happen today.  We need you to help us stop this from happening!  We need all of you to take ten minutes of your time this morning to place a call to your Representative and to each Representative in your state delegation to tell them to vote “no” on H.R. 5461.   To find your representative in the House, please click here.   To find your representative in the Senate, please click here.       Most members of...

What is H.R. 4383? What Does it Do For You?

The title insurance industry is finally mobilizing itself to take positions on bills currently pending in Washington, DC.  With all the chatter recently making its way through the wires, we thought it was important to let you know how independent real estate settlement service providers and those who follow policy with NAILTA viewed the recent movements. What is Going On? The House Financial Services Committee (HFSC) recently convened a hearing concerning eleven (11) separate legislative bills that are each directed at the Dodd-Frank Act, and specifically the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).  This is not the first effort for the HFSC on Dodd-Frank.  Since 2011, there have been over fifty (50) such bills designed to alter, restrict or outright repeal Dodd-Frank and the CFPB. None of any consequence have been signed into law. Of the 11 current bills being pushed by the leadership of the HFSC, one has appeared on the radar screen for the title insurance industry.  That bill is known as H.R. 4383, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection Small Business Advisory Board Act. What Does H.R. 4383 Do? The stated goal of the bill is to modify those portions of Dodd-Frank to mandate that the CFPB Director establish a Small Business Advisory Board (SBAB) to: (1) advise and consult with the Bureau; and, (2) provide information on emerging practices of small business that provide eligible financial products or services — i.e., information on what you do every day. The bill would mandate that 12 representatives of small business meet with the CFPB at least two times per year to discuss these trends and issues, regardless of rulemaking efforts.   To see the bill’s language, click here. What is Missing From H.R. 4383? H.R. 4383...

HR 3211 – The bull-rush is on

Last week, the House Financial Services Committee (HFSC), in a surprise move, convened a full committee hearing on 15 pending bills including HR 3211 and “voice-voted” HR 3211 onto the House floor for further consideration. The Chairman of the HFSC, Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), ordered the voice vote on HR 3211 instead of a roll call vote, or the typical voting pattern for committee legislation because he suspected that several Republican members on the committee would vote “no” and thereby jeopardize the chances HR 3211 can move successfully in the House and the Senate.  The voice-vote was called with barely twenty members present.  It was a procedural passage of the bill. Despite our pronouncements to the contrary, we are now firmly back at work on HR 3211.  We need you and your staff to help us engage members of Congress to understand why HR 3211 and the Senate version, known as S 949, are bad for consumers and worse for small business owners in the title insurance industry. Who Stood Up for Independent Title Insurance Agents? Representative Keith Ellison (D-MN) was the lone voice of dissent in the poorly attended hearing and entered two amendments to HR 3211 that would have extended the time frame for a consumer to make a RESPA-related claim from 1 year to 3 years under the statute and would limit the amount of return a referral source would derive from their ownership in an affiliated business arrangement. Both amendments were referred to the House Judiciary Committee and additional movement on them in the Republican-controlled House is unlikely. What Now? With HR 3211 moving to the House floor, we need...