Tag Archives: Pennsylvania Title Insurance

Survey Standards Course Approved in Pennsylvania

2 credits. Members of the American Land Title Association® (ALTA®) have specific needs, unique to title insurance matters, when asked to insure title to land without exception as to the many matters which might be discoverable from survey and inspection, and which are not evidenced by the public records. This course discusses the standards associated with those surveys.

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For a survey of real property, and the plat, map or record of such survey, to be acceptable to a title insurance company for the purpose of insuring title to said real property free and clear of survey matters (except those matters disclosed by the survey and indicated on the plat or map), certain specific and pertinent information must be presented for the distinct and clear understanding between the insured, the client (if different from the insured), the title insurance company (insurer), the lender, and the surveyor professionally responsible for the survey.

In order to meet such needs, clients, insurers, insureds, and lenders are entitled to rely on surveyors to conduct surveys and prepare associated plats or maps that are of a professional quality and appropriately uniform, complete, and accurate. To that end, and in the interests of the general public, the surveying profession, title insurers, and abstracters, the ALTA and the NSPS jointly promulgate the within details and criteria setting forth a minimum standard of performance for ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys.

A complete 2016 ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey includes:
(i) the on-site fieldwork required pursuant to Section 5,
(ii) the preparation of a plat or map pursuant to Section 6 showing the results of the fieldwork and its relationship to documents provided to or obtained by the surveyor pursuant to Section 4,
(iii) any information from Table A items requested by the client, and
(iv) the certification outlined in Section 7.

Gary KentGary Kent is Director of Surveying at The Schneider Corporation, a 42-year-old consulting firm based in Indianapolis providing solutions in surveying, GIS, 3D graphics, architecture, and civil, municipal and transportation engineering. A past-president of both ACSM and the Indiana Society of Professional Land Surveyors, Gary has a BS degree in Land Surveying from Purdue University and is registered to practice surveying in Indiana and Michigan. He is chair of both the NSPS/ACSM committee and the ALTA committee on the ALTA/ACSM Standards. He currently sits on the Indiana State Board of Registration for Land Surveyors and is also a member of the adjunct faculty at the Purdue campus in Indianapolis where he teaches Land Survey Systems, Legal Descriptions, Boundary Law and Property Surveying.

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PA ALTA Best Practices Pillar 2 Escrow Accounting course available in Pennsylvania

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This course is one in a series of Courses that discuss ALTA Best Practices. This one covers Pillar 2. The objective of the course is for the learner to complete the section of their policy and procedure manual for the pillars discussed in the course. Also, upon completion the learner will be confident that they will be able to pass an ALTA Best Practice audit for the pillars discussed in the course.

Pillar 2 is about Escrow Trust Accounting. Appropriate and effective escrow controls and staff training help title and settlement companies meet client and legal requirements for the safeguarding of client funds. These procedures help ensure accuracy and minimize the exposure to loss of client funds. Settlement companies may engage outside contractors to conduct segregation of trust accounting duties.

The course covers the 73 questions asked in the ALTA Pillar 2 Workbook so that the learner understands what is expected to be compliant. The course covers the Action Items report, Assessment Readiness, and Certification

Streamline Consulting has done the research and put together the content for the course. Streamline Consulting is a privately owned company that was formed in order to meet the personnel, technical and business needs of Title Insurance Companies. They are advocates for their clients in all aspects of the title insurance industry.

While the nature of the business is the same in all states, the nuances of each title company, even within the same city, can be very different. Streamline customizes every project and product for each title company, regardless of size, location or products and services provided to their customers.

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MERS, the core concepts

Mike SkalkaMichael B. Skalka
Executive Vice President

MERS operates an electronic registry, the MERS® System, for tracking servicing rights and beneficial ownership interests in residential mortgage loans, and MERS® Commercial for the commercial mortgage‐backed securities (CMBS) and multifamily marketplace. This session will educate the agents about MERS, its uniqueness in the lending industry and to address many of the misunderstandings about MERS. We will discuss the business model, the corporate structure, the MERS System, the benefits to the lending and title insurance industries, the general litigation concerns as noted in the press, and various regulatory and legislative issues.”

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About the Presenter

In April 2012, Mike Skalka relocated to Virginia to join MERSCORP Holdings, Inc., parent company of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS), as Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer. He also serves as Corporate Secretary for MERSCORP Holdings and MERS.  MERSCORP Holdings, which operates an electronic registry of mortgage loan servicing rights and ownership on behalf of the lending industry, is presently addressing the challenging issues associated with foreclosures and mortgage record holding – areas in which Mr. Skalka’s background and knowledge is uniquely suited.

Mr. Skalka received his B.A. degree from C.W. Post College of Long Island University and his J.D. degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law. Upon graduation from law school, Mr. Skalka began his career in the title industry and then went on to private practice; subsequently, reentering the title industry years later.

Mr. Skalka joined Stewart Title in 1988 as the founding president of Stewart Title Insurance Company, domesticated in New York. Shortly thereafter, in the early 1990s, he helped establish Stewart’s operations in Canada and theUnited Kingdom, and then relocated from New York to Houston, in 1993, to serve as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of the Stewart Organization until 2005.

As Stewart continued to seek opportunities outside of the U.S., Mr. Skalka led those efforts by becoming Chairman of Stewart’s International Group in 2005. In 2007, he became the first person outside of the Morris and Stewart families to be appointed President and Managing Director of Global Underwriting Services of Stewart Title Guaranty Company, where he remains a member of its Board of Directors. Mr. Skalka had also helped to lead the National Title Services Division of Stewart since 2009.

With his more than 35 years in the title and real estate industries, Mr. Skalka has established himself as an admired member of the real estate community. He has had the honor to be appointed to the Board of Governors of the American Land Title Association®, as well as to serve upon its various committees; and, is a past President of the New York State Land Title Association.

In the spring of 2007, the Houston Chronicle published a feature article about Mr. Skalka and his international activities on behalf of the Stewart Organization.  He also has been quoted in Continental Airlines Magazine concerning the real estate market in Latin America.  Mr. Skalka has spoken before numerous bar association, land title asso
ciation, and related industry functions throughout the United States and England and has had articles published by the Bank Lending Institute, the New York Law Journal, the Practicing Law Institute and the National Register of Commercial Real Estate.