Steward Title writes new rules on foreclosure sales associated with flawed paperwork

By Michelle Conlin, AP
Friday, October 8, 2010

Stewart Title clamps down on foreclosure sales

NEW YORK — Stewart Title Guaranty Co. is clamping down on sales of foreclosed homes that may be linked to flawed documentation.

In an internal memo obtained by The Associated Press, Houston-based Stewart is issuing guidelines to its agents that make it difficult to write policies on property foreclosed upon by four banks whose processes are in question. Those banks are JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, OneWest Bank or Ally Financial’s GMAC Mortgage unit.

In a statement, Stewart Title said the memo provides guidelines to its issuing offices to enable them to insure foreclosure sales in jurisdictions where lenders or state attorneys general have not issued a moratorium on foreclosures.

“Stewart stands ready to insure these transactions in accordance with these guidelines,” the company said.

A week ago, title insurer Old Republic National ordered its agents to stop offering policies on foreclosed properties owned by GMAC or JPMorgan Chase.

Stewart Title is owned by Stewart Information Services Corp. Title insurance provides protection to the homebuyer and mortgage provider in the case of any unpaid taxes, questionable ownership or other problems.

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