Industry News

$27.5 million Michigan title insurance settlement approved

Overcharges on title insurance alleged

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More than 64,500 people who bought new homes in Michigan will share a $27.5 million settlement approved Tuesday, media reports said. U.S. District Judge Avern Cohn in Detroit approved a settlement to be paid by four title insurance companies that allegedly overcharged new-home buyers for title insurance between December 1998 and July 2005, reports said. The title insurance industry came under an intense spotlight in 2005. Colorado's Insurance Division in February investigated nine Colorado title insurers for alleged kickback schemes said to result in overcharges to consumers. The probe sparked dozens of investigations nationwide, in Florida, Washington, Hawaii, California, Oklahoma, Minnesota, and Washington and other states. Checks averaging $345 will be sent to homeowners around July if no one appeals the decision, plaintiffs' lawyer Patrick Bruetsch of Birmingham, Mich., told the Detroit Free Press. So far, no one has objected, reports said. Bruetsch said homeowners eligible for t...