Mortgage insurer settles RESPA allegations for $100,000

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Republic Mortgage Insurance Corp. (RMIC) has agreed to pay $100,000 in penalties for allegedly paying illegal kickbacks to mortgage lenders in exchange for business, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The CFPB took over enforcement of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in July 2011. RESPA prohibits giving and receiving kickbacks, fees or any “thing of value” for referrals of settlement service business involving federally related mortgages.

As part of a proposed settlement, without admitting to or denying the allegations against the company, RMIC agreed to pay the six-figure fine to the CFPB, stop violating RESPA, and submit to CFPB monitoring.

This is the fifth similar action the CFPB has taken this year. Inman News columnist Ken Harney has noted that anyone in real estate with affiliated settlement service businesses should be on alert: “There’s a new RESPA sheriff in town. He’s looking hard for alleged lawbreakers and he seems to be in no mood for compromise.”

Source: CFPB