Industry News

Get Title Insurance ends consumer cash rewards

Company says practice falls into 'gray area' of RESPA

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A company that provides home buyers with multiple quotes from title insurance companies is abandoning its strategy of offering consumers cash rewards because the practice falls into a "gray area" of the law, the company said Wednesday. Get Title Insurance launched its Web site July 31, offering home buyers the ability to get quotes from title insurers who do business in their ZIP code. As an incentive to close the deal, Get Title Insurance offered cash payments to borrowers who purchased policies through the site. The federal Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, or RESPA, prohibits companies from paying rebates or referral fees to each other in order to generate business. But Get Title Insurance Chief Executive Officer Larry Calinda said the rewards his company offered consumers were legal, in part because the payments were made from Get Title Insurance's operating expenses, and not by title insurers. A spokeswoman for Get Title Insurance said some title and settlement services com...