Members of the real estate industry have been celebrating the most recent federal-court ruling involving PHH Corporation. That decision seems to expand a RESPA safe harbor for services actually performed. But that ruling, while appearing to favor the industry, could cause as many problems as it solves.In a recent decision, the full United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. View Full Post
To class action lawyers, the much maligned Maryland title agency Genuine Title, LLC, has been a gift many times over. That one company has spawned eight class actions and two public enforcement cases. But, after four years of exhaustive litigation, the federal judge presiding over the class lawsuits has finally thrown them out. View Full Post
Whether cyber insurance protects you from the prevailing scam affecting real estate companies today—social engineering—might depend on which state’s law governs your policy. It doesn’t have to be that way. In the typical social-engineering scam, a hacker gains access to a stream of emails, normally through phishing (the use of fraudulent emails or messages that trick an authorized user into revealing his password). View Full Post
For years, ambitious class-action lawyers have tried to criminalize the business of captive reinsurance, with varying degrees of success. Recent decisions from federal courts in Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia suggest that these lawsuits’ heyday might finally be over. In the Pennsylvania case, Menichino v. View Full Post
This past week, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced that it will ask for public input on its operations, on everything from enforcement, supervision, rulemaking, market monitoring, and education activities. It’s not hard to guess which topics are likely to generate the most comments. View Full Post
According to the FBI, in 2016, incidents of cyber fraud in the real estate industry shot up by 480%. Criminals somehow figured out the real estate process around that time and have been wreaking havoc ever since. So, as they say, there are two types of businesses: ones that have already been hacked and ones that will be. View Full Post
Last week, regulators from 49 states and the District of Columbia announced a $45 million settlement with PHH Mortgage Corporation. Left unsaid was how that settlement would become legally enforceable and whether it would fully exonerate PHH. The answers to those questions are: the settlement will become enforceable through the Dodd-Frank Act and, no, PHH could face further liability. View Full Post