Blog & News



AGENT BULLETIN: COVID-19 Closures of Recording Offices

posted Mar 19, 2020, 10:07 AM by web admin   [ updated Mar 19, 2020, 1:16 PM ]

UPDATE: Affidavits are now available in EPIC.   

Guidance on Procedures  

Our lives continue to be affected in numerous ways as a result of COVID-19. ATGF is aware that some state or county offices have closed in response to public health concerns related to the COVID-19 outbreak. This information is rapidly developing, and local operations must be alert to changes in recording availability. In an effort to continue uninterrupted service to you, we are addressing these potential possibilities.

The attached bulletin provides critical guidance on how ATGF agents should proceed at this time. 

Also linked below are two Affidavit PDFs. We are working on getting these into EPIC, in the meantime use these files. These are now available in EPIC.

In the Event a County Clerk and Recorder Office is Fully Closed and will not accept documents for recording, you MUST use the Affidavits for the Seller/Borrower and Buyer available in EPIC.


We will continue to provide additional information as guidance as necessary, and are here to lend assistance and support in any way that we can.

COVID-19 and ATGF Business Continuity

posted Mar 16, 2020, 3:23 PM by web admin   [ updated Mar 16, 2020, 3:24 PM ]

ATGF has a robust business continuity plan that we are following and adjusting as the situation evolves to make sure we are able to serve you. Access to web-based EPIC and customer support personnel will continue uninterrupted. We are being cautious to ensure we are keeping our people, our customers and our communities safe.

These measures include:
  • Asking employees who suspect they’ve been exposed to the COVID-19 virus to self-isolate for 14 days and follow appropriate directions from their healthcare provider.
  • Implementing increased cleaning and disinfecting protocols at our offices.
  • Instructing employees on proper hand-washing techniques and social distancing.
  • Following the guidance of major public health organizations, including the Centres for Disease Control and local health authorities.
We will update this message when circumstances dictate.


Agent Update: Retention of Fees-Colorado Revised Statutes

posted Mar 9, 2020, 9:38 AM by Kim Whitlock

Recently, the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies Division of Insurance (DORA) re-released its November 2008 Bulletin No. B-5.22 (Bulletin) clarifying the Colorado Revised Statutes pertaining to the retention of certain fees for services not actually performed.

 

Section 10-11-108(1)(d), C.R.S. states, in relevant part, that “A title insurance company or title insurance agent shall not … give or receive or attempt to give or receive any portion or percentage of any charge made or received in connection with the business of title insurance if such charge is not for services actually rendered.”

 

As stated in the Bulletin, a copy of which can be found at the link below for your reference, DORA advises that the retention or processing of other “pass through” fees not used for the fee’s stated purpose constitutes receiving a portion of a charge for services not actually performed, in violation of Section 10-11-108(1)(d).

 

Pursuant to the Bulletin and Section 10-11-108(1)(d), C.R.S., ATGF issuing agents are instructed to return any unused portion of recording fees, taxes, homeowner association charges, utilities, water escrows or other “pass-through” fees to the consumer who paid the fee (as evidenced by the closing and settlement documents executed by the parties at closing, such as the Closing Disclosure or Settlement Statement).

 

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwMmWVFE3YMsdEVKWEEwblFnNWc/view

 

 

We appreciate your hard work and loyalty.

Questions? Contact us at: title@atgf.net or 303-292-3055

Remembering Lou Ohly, Director Emeritus

posted Aug 9, 2019, 12:02 PM by web admin

  
It is with profound sadness that ATGF announces the passing of Director Emeritus, Lou Ohly, on August 6 in Rochester, Minnesota. Lou was recently predeceased by his wife, Beverly, in July. Condolences can be left at mackenfuneralhome.com/memorial-services/louis-m-ohly/.

Lou joined ATGF's Board of Directors more than 20 years ago and remained an eternally optimistic member throughout. An attorney who began practice in 1971, Lou was highly respected by everyone at ATGF and Minnesota's legal community. Our thoughts are with the entire Ohly family who prefer memorials to Rochester Ronald McDonald House: www.rmhmn.org/donate/.

First Title Policy in Arizona Signals Era of Expansion for ATGF

posted Jun 11, 2019, 7:20 AM by web admin   [ updated Jun 11, 2019, 7:24 AM ]

Denver, Colorado 
June 11, 2019 

Attorneys Title Guaranty Fund, Inc. (ATGF) has issued its first Arizona title policy through Sonoran Desert Title Agency in Phoenix.  "We are pleased to have an independent agency be the first to issue a title policy for us in Arizona," says Brian Phillips, CEO of ATGF.

"With consolidation and other changes at national underwriters, this opens significant opportunities for a stable, regional underwriter with a proven track record of supporting independent title agents. That's where ATGF fits into the Arizona marketplace," Phillips stated. "Independent agents need a strong partner that will work with them - not against them," he continued.

ATGF has more than 50 years of underwriting expertise to offer title agents. Arizona was selected for expansion due to proximity and potential for overlap with ATGF's operations in Colorado and Utah. Brian Phillips explains his vision, "As pleased as we are to be issuing our first Arizona title policy, we're expanding our footprint in the state. Arizona's real estate consumers deserve a viable alternative to the somewhat impersonal service that can be experienced through a national underwriter."

Signaling an Era of Controlled Expansion for ATGF

The effort to become a licensed underwriter in Arizona was spearheaded by ATGF's President, Eric Morgan. "We've received Certificates of Authority in seven other states, and are currently working on eleven more," stated Morgan. ATGF will take a measured approach in expansion. "Receiving approval is step one," continued Morgan. "We will make certain we're providing exceptional service in Arizona before we move into another state."

Nevada, where a Certificate of Authority has been issued, is currently slated to be the state where ATGF moves next. "There are many states that can benefit from what ATGF has to offer, but we remain committed to expanding in a rational, controlled manner," added Brian Phillips.

Combining Title Insurance and Technology

ATGF is unique in the title insurance industry as it also offers the proprietary web-based EPIC (Electronic Policy Issuance Capability) title production and underwriting system. EPIC is a tool that can dramatically streamline the entire process without imposing a financial burden on the agent. ATGF provides the system to all its agents for free.

About Attorneys Title Guaranty Fund, Inc.

Founded in 1960, ATGF has been providing best in class title insurance underwriting and services for more than 50 years.  The company's mission is helping agents succeed through trusted products and services, innovative technology and amazing support.  The company currently pursues this mission by underwriting, training and supporting agents in Colorado, Utah, Minnesota, North Dakota and Arizona.  ATGF has maintained a strong Financial Stability Rating(r) (FSR) of A, Exceptional, from the independent rating agency, Demotech, Inc. For more information on ATGF or EPIC, contact ATGF's CEO, Brian Phillips at bphillips@atgf.net or 303-383-4333. www.atgf.net

Trust the Financial Strength and Stability of ATGF!

posted Jun 10, 2019, 10:39 AM by web admin   [ updated Nov 12, 2019, 1:04 PM ]


ATGF Education Series- Bankruptcy & Your Title Examination 101 & 201

posted Apr 4, 2019, 2:44 PM by Kim Whitlock

TO REGISTER FOR MONDAY APRIL 8TH CLICK HERE: Bankruptcy & Your Title Examination 101

TO REGISTER FOR MONDAY APRIL 15TH CLICK HERE: Bankruptcy & Your Title Examination 201


What Is Title Insurance?

posted Feb 5, 2019, 4:09 PM by web admin   [ updated Feb 7, 2019, 6:14 AM ]

Title insurance is your assurance that title to your property
is free and clear of anything that would hinder your ability to sell or borrow against your property.


What is Title Insurance?

    • Protects you and your heirs as long as you or your heirs own the property.
    • Protects you from events that happened in the past.
    • You only pay for the premium once, unlike other types of insurance.

Who Needs Title Insurance?

    • Mortgage Lenders
    • Buyers and Owners of Property

This unique form of insurance protects you from past events. These could be unpaid debts, misinterpretation of instruments (like wills and deeds), forged documents, undisclosed heirs, judgments against previous owners.

An Owner’s Title Policy can protect you from unforeseen problems that limit your use and enjoyment of the property and bring financial loss. Only an Owner’s Policy fully protects you should a covered title problem come up that was not found during the title exam.

Most mortgage lenders require you to pay for a Lender’s Policy, which insures the validity and position of their lien, and protects them for the amount of the loan.

Talk to an Independent Title Agent about your Title Insurance options


What's the difference between Special & General Warranty Deeds?

posted Feb 5, 2019, 4:09 PM by web admin   [ updated Feb 7, 2019, 6:14 AM ]

Comparing Special Warranty Deeds to General Warranty Deeds.

In Colorado, the Contract to Buy and Sell Real Estate has historically favored the use of a General Warranty Deed. As of January 1, 2019 the default under the Contract is a Special Warranty Deed. While there are some differences, do not be afraid to use a Special Warranty Deed.

Special Warranty Deed

As a seller you only warrant against defects occurring during your ownership. Why should you warrant for problems created by prior owners?

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General Warranty Deed

As a seller you warrant against all defects back to Patent (1876 in Colorado). No matter how long you owned the property, you are potentially liable to the buyer and all future owners for all past defects occurring on title.

Your title insurance policy protects you against defects that arose prior to your immediate seller’s period of ownership. Don’t forget, you will one day be a seller and do not want to be liable for defects that arose prior to your ownership.

That’s what title insurance is for.

Both Special and General Warranty deeds guarantee that:

    • The seller owns the property 
    • The seller is legally permitted to sell the property 
    • The property has not already been sold

Talk to an Independent Title Agent about your Title Insurance options

Ever Wonder How a Title Policy is Made?

posted Feb 5, 2019, 3:47 PM by web admin   [ updated Feb 7, 2019, 6:15 AM ]

The Life of a Title Order. 

Many buyers receive a Title Policy after closing. Much important work has been done behind the scenes to protect your interest in the new property. This simple infographic can help you understand how a title policy is made.  

 How a Title Policy is made infographic

 

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How a Title Policy is Made

  1. Title Order Opened
    The order is opened based on information in the executed sales contract. 

  2. Title Search & Examination
    Various public records are searched to identify potential title risks. The results of the search determine requirements (documents needed in order to complete the deal) and exceptions (items the title company will not insure). 

  3. Title Commitment
    This commitment is to insure title on the subject property and includes amount of coverage, who is covered, policy terms & conditions, and any limitations of coverage. 

  4. Curative Matters
    The title company takes action to correct (or cure) title issues, or insure around/against the identified issue(s).

  5. Closing
    Once matters have been resolved, and the lender has given their final approval of the loan’s financial details, the deal  is clear to close. An appointment is set for the closing, where the buyers and sellers sign necessary paperwork.

  6. Post-Closing Processing
    If all items are satisfactory to the lender, they fund the loan. All parties are notified once they receive the buyers’ funds from the lender. The Escrow Officer records all related documents with the County Clerk and Recorder.

  7. Congratulations! Your Title Policy Is Issued!
    Within 30 days of closing the transaction, if all Requirements listed on the Title Commitment have been satisfied, the final Policy is issued to the buyer.

Talk to an Independent Title Agent about your Title Insurance options



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