Changes to Pillar 4 of Best Practices Add Third-party Signing Standards
By Staff Writer @ Title News Online
December 5, 2016

Changes to ALTA’s Title Insurance and Settlement Company Best Practices that went into effect in October included the addition of standards for engaging third-party signing professionals.

In addition to addressing recording and pricing procedures, pillar 4 now includes policies for when title and settlement agents use a third-party signing professional to close transactions.

Pillar 4 now includes the following: Maintain written procedures to ensure that any third-party signing professional—including Notaries Public—engaged by a title or settlement company possess the appropriate qualifications, professionalism and knowledge… determined by a mix of legal and contractual obligations.

To comply, companies must conduct the following due diligence:

Verify that the third-party signing professional is covered by Errors and Omissions insurance, and a Notary surety bond, if required by state law.
Require that third-party signing professionals furnish evidence of their current state licensure, where required, or evidence if they have attained a recognized and verifiable industry designation, and provide an acknowledgement of compliance with Company’s instructions and Company’s information security program as detailed in Pillar 3 of these Best Practices.