Industry News

Colorado real estate probe turns up sham title cos.

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A seven-month probe of affiliated real estate partnerships in Colorado has uncovered what officials describe as a network of sham title agencies set up to pay kickbacks to lenders and other real estate providers. The probe of relationships between title insurers and other real estate entities is currently focused on about a dozen title insurance agencies owned and operated by Douglas P. Farr, chief executive of Denver-based CPR Title, though officials say others are being probed as well. In legal documents seeking to close Farr's business and revoke his state insurance license, officials allege that many of his companies were set up to pay kickbacks and rebates to lenders and other real estate service providers in a scheme to fraudulently collect title insurance premiums. Officials say Farr's title agencies left thousands of Colorado homeowners without valid title insurance. Repeated attempts to reach Farr were unsuccessful. The title insurance industry came under an intense spotlight...