Industry News

Washington state fines title insurers $35,000

Gifts to real estate agents, lenders probed

After letting title insurers who were allegedly using illegal incentives and inducements to win business off with a warning last year, Washington state regulators have fined two companies accused of continuing the practice $35,000. Most of the fines levied against Ticor Title Insurance Co. and First American Title by Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler were suspended on condition that there are no further violations of a state law that limits the use of rebates and incentives to $25 per person per year. Ticor was fined $25,000 after regulators allegedly found the company spent more than $400 on holiday gifts, dinners and floral arrangements in December and January. But the company will pay only $5,000 unless future violations are found, with the remainder of the fines suspended. The inducements allegedly provided by Ticor included four holiday gifts for real estate agents and lenders that cost $29 each, and one holiday gift for a Realtor that cost $31.95. The company is also accused ...

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