Fund News and Alerts


ALERT Update! Change in premium rates.

ALERT Update! Change in premium rates.

I am very pleased to update you on the legislation filed earlier this month that changed the way title premiums are set (from promulgated to "file and use").

An amendment has been filed that removes this provision from the Senate version of the bill.  (It was not in the House version of the bill from the beginning.)  This is great news for us.

04/19/2023


 ALERT Update! Change in premium rates

ALERT Update! Change in premium rates

On April 5, 2023, I sent an alert about Senate Bill 7052 which contained provisions changing Florida's title premium rate from a promulgated rate to a "file and use" model.  Today's alert is an update on that situation.

04/12/2023


ALERT! Change in premium rates

ALERT! Change in premium rates

On Monday, April 3, 2023, proposed Senate Bill 7052 was filed.  Section 23 of that bill would effectively eliminate promulgated rates for title insurance in Florida.  Recognizing the huge potential impacts of such a change to Florida’s rate structure, The Fund, the members of the Florida Land Title Association and the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section of the Florida Bar immediately began efforts to educate Florida lawmakers on this issue.  We emphasized how our current rate structure supports title agents.  While we want to make you aware of this proposed legislation, please rest assured that The Fund and its professional team in Tallahassee are working to oppose Section 23, of Senate Bill 7052.

04/05/2023


Authorized Agent Letter and the Title Agent’s Responsibilities

Authorized Agent Letter and the Title Agent’s Responsibilities

As part of the closing process, once a Fund Member has received a contract to conduct a closing and issue title insurance policies, the lender involved may request confirmation that the Fund Member, also referred to as the Closing Agent, is in good standing with their title insurance underwriter. This letter is commonly referred to as an Authorized Agent Letter. This article describes the Authorized Agent Letter and, if requested, how a Fund Member may obtain it. The request for an Authorized Agent Letter serves as a good reminder of the duties and responsibilities of Fund Members as title agents. This article also reviews some related best practices and procedures. Following the best practices ensures the proper measures are being taken during a transaction to help prevent any instances of fraud or a cloud on title from occurring.  
Read the article

04/03/2023


Submit & Pay Policies in Landtech

Submit & Pay Policies in Landtech

You can now submit policies and pay premium invoices easily and electronically* via The Fund's integration in Landtech.

03/30/2023


Alert: Vacant Lot Scams – Beware of Notarizations Taken Abroad

Alert: Vacant Lot Scams – Beware of Notarizations Taken Abroad

Previous alerts on this issue have been sent in 2009, 2010, 2018 and 2022. 

On April 12, 2022, The Fund released an alert regarding an increase in the volume of fraud scams concerning vacant lots; the most common being an unencumbered vacant property whose owner lives outside of the United States.  The fraudster poses as the legitimate owner of the property and (in most instances) forges a deed from the true owner to our insured owner(s).  A claim arises when the true owner of the property comes forward to challenge the insured deed, many times in the form of a suit to quiet title.

03/30/2023


Submit & Pay Policies in DisplaySoft

Submit & Pay Policies in DisplaySoft

Now you can submit policies and pay premium invoices electronically* via The Fund's integration in DisplaySoft.   03/23/2023


Alter Egos Behaving Badly – Piercing the Corporate Veil and the IRS

Alter Egos Behaving Badly – Piercing the Corporate Veil and the IRS

Generally, creditors have no recourse against a business owner for the debts of the business so long as corporate formalities, such as separate books and records, separate bank accounts, and proper capitalization, are followed. The corporate entity form is supposed to protect its owners from such liability. That protection is often referred to as “the corporate veil.” But if the company is merely an alter ego of the individual owners, and that alter ego was used to commit fraud, courts will permit creditors to disregard the legal separateness of the business entity from its principals and “pierce the corporate veil.”

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03/01/2023


2022 Sightings of Florida’s “Legal Chameleon”

2022 Sightings of Florida’s “Legal Chameleon”

Florida’s homestead laws have been compared by legal scholars and courts to a chameleon “which changes color to accord with the background against which it is viewed.” Crosby and Miller, “Our Legal Chameleon: The Florida Homestead Exemption,” 2 U. Fla. L. Rev. 12 (1949). This article summarizes the 2022 reported state and federal case sightings of the Florida homestead laws, its “legal chameleon.” 

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02/01/2023


RON, KBA, and the Foreign National Quandry

RON, KBA, and the Foreign National Quandry

There is little to argue that since its inception in Florida in January 2020, remote online notarization (RON) has been a resounding success. Certainly, the 2020 pandemic propelled the use of RON to heights likely unimagined by lawmakers, closing agents, or even the RON companies themselves, but regardless of its impetus, there are now over 5,000 registered online notaries in Florida with access to an ever-growing number of RON platforms. Online notaries report to The Fund that the platforms are improving incrementally, bettering the RON-signing session for all involved. Florida online notaries routinely e-record deeds signed by people the world over, avoiding the stresses of mail-away closings and sourcing local notaries. 

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01/01/2023

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