Financial & Corporate Services
April 2014 Issue
Content is updated daily

Industry News

Four Ways To Build Your Knowledge At NNA 2013 Conference

The “robo-signing” crisis and the ensuing housing market meltdown resulted in a number of new regulations for the financial and mortgage industries. One of the primary impacts to the industry will be the recent federally-mandated training and education for Notary staff and their supervisors. The NNA 2013 Conference theme, “Knowledge 2.0,” has been specially designed to help Notaries in the banking industry enter this new world of signings....More

2013 Mortgage Hiring Forecast

Changes in the mortgage industry as well as an improving financial outlook bode well for Notaries who are seeking a new job or searching for additional sources of income....More

Prediction: Paperless Mortgages To Increase

Notaries may soon see a rise in paperless mortgages, driven by changing industry standards and new regulations, according to a recent article in the American Banker....More

'Robo' Tally: $35 Billion And Counting

The announcement this month of several large settlements between mortgage companies and federal regulators shows how the costs of the foreclosure crisis continue to skyrocket for major financial institutions since the “robo-signing” scandal broke in late 2010. To date, financial institutions have been hit with more than $35 billion in fines and settlement costs — and the cost is likely to go up....More

Housing Market Looking Up In 2013

Recent economic forecasts point to an expanding economy and increased business for lenders, loan servicers and signing agents. Freddie Mac’s outlook for 2013 projects that long-term mortgage rates will remain near record lows for the first half of the year, before rising slightly in the second half....More

Credit Unions Issue More Home Loans As Housing Market Improves

A gradually improving economy with a growing demand in the housing market has helped credit unions by driving up the number of mortgage loans they issue  opening up a new source of revenue for Notaries. Traditionally, most individuals have joined credit unions to take advantage of low fee checking accounts and low interest auto loans, but consumers have discovered that credit unions are now beginning to enter the mortgage lending industry....More

'Robo-Signing' Guilty Plea Sends Strong Message To Mortgage Servicing Industry

The mortgage servicing industry got a powerful message recently when the former president of DocX, the now-defunct company at the heart of the “robo-signing” scandal, pled guilty to federal and state criminal charges....More

Home Equity Loans Make A Comeback

After declining for the past six years, Home Equity Loan (HELOC) originations rose 30 percent to almost $80 billion in 2012, the highest level since the start of the housing meltdown in 2008. A report issued by Moody’s Corp. anticipates that 2013 HELOC loans will rise another 31 percent to $104 billion, a sizeable increase in the number of mortgage signings year over year....More

Mortgage Industry Hiring Picking Up

After a lengthy recession during which hundreds of thousands of mortgage industry jobs were lost, hiring is picking up. Recent mortgage industry media reports indicate that major lenders are now adding staff to meet the growing demand from new home sales and mortgage refinancing, which has resulted from the low interest rates and an improving economy....More

Processing Times Increase But More Loans Are Closing

Notaries in the mortgage industry may have noticed a growing trend in signings — an increase in the amount of time it takes for a loan to close. Ellie Mae, a leading provider of data for the residential mortgage industry, released its September Origination Insight Report showing it is now taking an average of 50 days to close a home loan....More

Housing, 'Robo' Crises Put Spotlight On Need For E&O Insurance

The collapse of the housing market and subsequent foreclosure crisis have led to an increase in litigation, causing people throughout the legal, financial and real estate industries to take a closer look at errors and omissions insurance....More

Foreclosure Litigation Levels Off For Now

The pace of foreclosure-related lawsuits slowed in the first quarter of 2012, but the reprieve may only be temporary, according to the latest edition of the Mortgage Litigation Index....More

More Settlements Seen Coming From Robo-Signing Crisis

In the wake of the foreclosure crisis and housing market meltdown, state and federal officials continue to press for financial settlements with banks, mortgage servicers and industry vendors....More

Mortgage Crisis Triggers Stronger Focus On Vendors

By Jonice Gray Tucker and Kendra Kinnaird

The use of outside vendors by loan servicers is not new, but their role in default servicing and the adequacy of their work has drawn increasing regulatory scrutiny during the last two years. Work performed by Notaries has taken center stage, garnering particular attention in the context of mortgage servicing. To date, enforcement activities by state banking regulators and attorneys general have focused on the servicing practices of the very largest loan servicers, but these entities have also pursued direct actions against a bevy of third-party service providers for their alleged inappropriate actions s during the foreclosure process....More

Proposed Mortgage Rules May Put Small Lenders In A Bind

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed new regulations in the aftermath of the mortgage market meltdown that have caused concern among smaller community banks....More

Mortgage Lending Showing Signs Of Robust Growth

Amid all the regulatory upheaval and economic uncertainty of recent months, the mortgage industry is showing signs of substantial growth, according to various reports....More

Oaths Vs. Affirmations: Know The Difference

When executing a jurat, some signers’ personal beliefs may cause them to object to swearing an oath of truthfulness to a higher power. In these circumstances, the signer may make an alternative promise called an affirmation instead. An affirmation is a promise to be truthful based on the signer’s personal honor....More

Handling Improper Documents When It's The Drafter's Mistake

By Chrissey Ladd

Long before the “robo-signing” crisis thrust Notaries Public into the crosshairs of regulatory and legal liabilities, we faced challenges with notarizations because of improperly drafted documents. These “drafter” errors remain prevalent today, and they continue to challenge even the most professional Notary Public, as the drafters rarely are trained in notarial procedures and responsibilities....More

Small Lending Institutions Seek Relief From Some CFPB Mortgage Rules

Smaller financial institutions and community banks are petitioning the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to allow them exemptions from two of the impending regulations on mortgage loans. The Independent Community Bankers of America has urged the CFPB to limit the scope of rules on mortgage disclosures, as well as the underwriting standards for home loans. The request has arisen from a concern about the costs of regulatory compliance.  Community bank representatives are suggesting that a “tiered regulatory system” would ease their financial burden....More

CFPB Seeks Public Input On Financial Fraud Against The Elderly

Director Richard Cordray of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced a public inquiry to learn the extent and differing ways through which seniors are financially exploited, with the goal of developing the best practices for elder financial management.  According to a recent study, seniors were defrauded of at least $2.9 billion in 2010, a 12 percent increase in the dollar amount lost from 2008 to 2010....More

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