Industry News

Title insurance investigation long overdue

Bring it on, industry figures say

A California investigation into alleged kickback schemes involving title insurance companies is a good idea, industry figures said, with one advocating even wider investigations. "It's a good idea," said Devon Callan, a loan originator with American Advantage Mortgage, regarding the investigation that California Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi announced on Tuesday. "It's one thing to set up a strategic alliance between yourself and another company. But once you start doing this revenue-sharing thing, where does the line get crossed? I think the investigation should be carried over to mortgage companies that are affiliated with Realtors as well." Garamendi has been working with Colorado and Washington insurance regulators to probe a series of "phony 'reinsurance' contracts" and has issued subpoenas in the matter. Garamendi said Tuesday that Fidelity National Title and LandAmerica companies were being investigated. "Under these elaborate schemes, the title insurers agreed to give...