April 12, 2017


TLTA Member Roland Love Testifies for Expungement of Lis Pendens in SB 1955; Bill Is Part of TLTA's Affirmative Agenda

On Monday, April 10, TLTA member Roland Love testified before the Senate Committee on State Affairs regarding SB 1955, which would allow for expungement of lis pendens on a property. Love testified in favor of the bill.
 
"The notice of lis pendens are good," said Love. "They give the world notice of a lawsuit that involves title in that way, and people that are going to buy property are on notice." However, Love explained,sometimes lis pendens is used improperly to create problems and tie up a property, preventing it from being sold.
 
Love continued, "This [bill] allows the court to take a look at the lawsuit and make sure that it really does involve a claim against title, so in this way, the court can rule after making a determination that notice of lis pendens is expunged, and this clarification makes it clear the property can then be transferred or encumbered, and put back into the stream of commerce."

TLTA sought the introduction of this bill as part of our legislative agenda for the 85th session.
 
As of press time for Dateline Austin, the Senate committee voted to place SB 1955 on the local calendar. TLTA will keep you posted on the bill's status as it progresses.
 
In addition to SB 1955, TLTA's affirmative agenda includes SB 1249, Sen. Royce West's bill on adverse possession against co-tenants. As we reported in last week's Dateline Austin, that bill passed out of the Senate on Wednesday, April 5. We will continue to keep you informed about this bill as well.
 
Read More About All 104 Bills TLTA Is Following »

ALTA Urges CFPB to Warn Consumers About Wire Fraud Schemes When Purchasing a Home

American Land Title Association | April 4, 2017
In a letter, ALTA urged the CFPB to issue an alert warning consumers about wire fraud schemes attempting to steal funds for real estate closings.
 
The alert should provide tips on how consumers can protect themselves and questions to ask to help determine if real estate professionals have procedures in place to protect their money. ALTA has educated its members over the past few years about these wire fraud schemes, but the best defense is to inform consumers about the danger.
 
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CFPB News: Republicans Attack Consumer Finance Watchdog; DOJ Requests Time During Oral Arguments in PHH Case

The chairman of a powerful House committee welcomed the nation’s top consumer financial watchdog to a hearing Wednesday by expressing surprise he showed up, and hoped he never does so again. The nearly five hours of questioning that followed marked a new level of hostility in the sharply partisan battle over a controversial agency.
 
“I believe the president is clearly justified in dismissing you and I call upon the president...to do just that, and to do it immediately,” Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) told Richard Cordray, director of the CFPB.
 
Read Republicans Attack Consumer Finance Watchdog as They Push for His Firing (L.A. Times) »
 
After switching sides in the landmark battle between the CFPB and PHH, the Department of Justice requested to have its own time slot during the oral arguments to be held on May 24, a post from the CFPB Monitor by Barbara Mishkin stated.
 
The U.S. government began to indicate that it might be switching sides in the case in mid-March, signaling that the Trump administration would not be as supportive of the CFPB as the Obama administration had been. However, the major reversal of sides didn’t mean they fully agreed with PHH.

Read "DOJ Requests Time During Oral Arguments in CFPB and PHH Case" (HousingWire) »

Congress Takes on "Predatory" PACE Loans

HousingWire | April 6, 2017
The rules surrounding energy retrofit loans, which have engendered a great deal of divisiveness over the last few years, could be about to change, as both houses of Congress are set to consider changes to the rule for loans created by the Property Assessed Clean Energy program.  
The program is shrouded in controversy because in some states, the PACE liens are given super priority status above the home’s mortgage, which many in the mortgage business take serious issue with.

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