May 20, 2020

In This Issue:

  • TDI: Extension for License Renewals Ends May 31
  • Mark Your Calendar: Dates Finalized for Virtual Annual Conference and Business Meeting July 13-16
  • Regulators Ease Restrictions on Homeowners in Coronavirus Mortgage Bailout Program
  • Unforeseen Circumstances: Contractual Obligations During a Pandemic
  • Vishing Explained: How Voice Phishing Attacks Scam Victims
  • TDI Job Opening: Title Insurance Specialist

TDI: Extension for License Renewals Ends May 31

Texas Department of Insurance | May 18, 2020
TDI reminds agents and adjusters that the COVID-19 extension to renew resident licenses and complete continuing education ends May 31.

For licenses that expired in March, April or May, there will be no fine or late fee if you complete your continuing education (CE) hours and payment by May 31.

To find CE courses, go to the Sircon website and click on “Approved Courses Inquiry.” You can search by license type for self-study and classroom-equivalent courses.
 
TLTA EDITOR'S NOTE: If you need to earn CE credits, TLTA offers a large catalog of live and on-demand webinars .


Mark Your Calendar: Dates Finalized for Virtual Annual Conference and Business Meeting July 13-16

TLTA | May 20, 2020
The dates have been finalized, and registration will officially open later this week! Our 2020 Virtual Annual Conference and Business Meeting will be held July 13-16, and it may be our best event yet!
 
After scouring the virtual marketplace, we've located the leading-edge technologies and best practices that have been driving successful virtual events for years, and we're putting those tools to work for you! At this year's conference you'll be able to remotely come and go from a series of virtual events and gatherings featuring informative and inspirational speakers, experienced professionals sharing their insights on our current marketplace challenges, valuable hot-topic continuing education, a robust exhibition space to connect with vendors of the latest products and services, and several intriguing opportunities to make new connections via virtual networking events. 

Featured Speakers

 

Evan Smith, CEO and Co-Founder, Texas Tribune


Dr. James P. Gaines, Chief Economist, Real Estate Center at Texas A&M

We're so proud that we've built a one-of-a-kind experience, and we can't wait to welcome you at the door. Get excited!
 

Regulators Ease Restrictions on Homeowners in Coronavirus Mortgage Bailout Program

CNBC | May 19, 2020
Federal regulators have changed rules and cleared up some confusion about limits placed on the more than 4 million borrowers in the mortgage relief program the government rolled out to contend with the coronavirus’s economic onslaught.

Lending rules that were in place before the pandemic left borrowers with little clarity about how they could get future mortgages or refinance their loans. Yet on Tuesday, the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which regulates Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, announced that borrowers may now refinance or buy a home with a new mortgage if they have begun to make payments on their current mortgage again.

They can do this if they’re in the forbearance program, or also if they have gotten out of it already. But they have to have made at least three months’ worth of payments. The previous guidelines had said borrowers must be current on their mortgage for at least a year. 
 
Read More »
 

Unforeseen Circumstances: Contractual Obligations During a Pandemic

Real Estate Center at Texas A&M | May 18, 2020
When parties enter into a contract, they generally agree on basic terms and foreseeable contingencies. For instance, they determine who will do what and at what price, time for performance, what is to be considered a material breach, and how to handle disputes or late payments. However, they might not address things nobody expects, such as war, disasters, or the Spanish inquisition. And, of course, they probably do not address global pandemics that bring the economy to a slow crawl.
 
How do the COVID-19 pandemic and widespread shelter-in-place orders affect Texas contracts? Under what circumstances will a party be excused from its contractual obligations due to the pandemic? The answers to such questions generally depend on the answers to these questions:
Was there an “act of God" that prevented a party from performing its contractual obligations?
Is there a force majeure clause in the contract and, if so, what does it say?
If there is not a force majeure clause, do the doctrines of impossibility, impracticability, or frustration of purpose excuse performance?
Read More »
 

Vishing Explained: How Voice Phishing Attacks Scam Victims

CSO | May 18, 2020
Vishing is a form of attack that attempts to trick victims into giving up sensitive personal information over the phone. While that makes it sound like an old-fashioned scam, vishing attacks have high-tech elements: they involve automated voice simulation technology, for instance, or the scammer may use personal information about the victim harvested from earlier cyberattacks to put them at ease.

No matter what technology is used, the setup for the attack follows a familiar social engineering script: An attacker creates a scenario to prey on human emotions, commonly greed or fear, and convinces the victim to disclose sensitive information, like credit card numbers or passwords. In that sense, vishing techniques mirror the phishing scams that have been around since the 1990s. But vishing calls exploit the fact that we're more likely to trust a human voice — and may target the elderly and technophobic who are naive and have no experience with these types of scams.
 
Read More » 

TDI Job Opening: Title Insurance Specialist

Texas Department of Insurance | April 21, 2020
The Texas Department of Insurance has a job opening that might interest you or someone in your professional network. The agency is hiring a "Title Industry Specialist" with meaningful title insurance experience. 
 
Read TDI's Posting and Apply »
 
If you have questions, please contact TDI's David Muckerheide.

In addition to the live webinars listed below, you have access to our library of more than 80 On-Demand webinars and videos covering the title industry topics you need to earn continuing education credits and stay ahead of the curve on the latest industry trends!