HA&W's 2015 ComplianceSuccess® Survey Reveals Title and Settlement Industry Divided Over How to Address ALTA Best Practices Compliance

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Large firms remain much more positive about ALTA framework than their smaller counterparts

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HA&W, LLP, the largest Georgia-headquartered tax, accounting and business consulting firm, announced today the results of the firm’s second annual ComplianceSuccess Survey. The 2015 ComplianceSuccess Survey sought to understand how title and settlement professionals are addressing ALTA Best Practices compliance.

The 2015 survey looked at title and settlement professionals’ attitudes and perceptions about compliance, as well as gauged where companies are in the process of becoming compliant. It also dug into the challenges businesses are facing when becoming ALTA Best Practices compliant.

Highlights from the survey include:

  •     Larger companies viewed the ALTA Best Practices Framework in a much more positive light than smaller companies.
  •     Large companies were more than six times as likely as small companies to have started completing the ALTA Best Practices pillars.
  •     Respondents overwhelmingly chose Security Awareness & Disaster Recovery Management as the ALTA Best Practices component that costs the most time and most money to complete.
  •     Smaller companies believe that they should not be held to the same standard as larger companies, while larger companies believe that companies large and small alike should be held to the same standard.
  •     Half of those respondents who utilized a third party to assess their current level of compliance chose to partner with CPA firms.

“National and regional institutions like Wells Fargo, SunTrust, BancorpSouth, IBERIABANK and Trustmark have been announcing their compliance guidelines for their third-party partners,” said Lee Fields, managing director of Business Consulting Services at HA&W. “Guidelines currently range from requiring completed self-assessments to certifications by independent third parties by certain dates.”

The results of the 2015 ComplianceSuccess Survey indicate that most title and settlement professionals have started down the road to ALTA Best Practice compliance, though questions still linger, with companies in all phases of compliance from assessment to testing. In addition, it’s clear that the industry has accepted the ALTA Best Practices Framework as a solution to compliance with consumer financial laws.

HA&W’s second annual ComplianceSuccess Survey was conducted in March and April of 2015. The survey included over 200 companies located across the nation which ranged in size from less than 100 residential closings per year to more than 10,000 residential closings per year.

For a copy of the full survey report, visit http://www.compliancesuccess.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/2015CS-Survey.pdf.

About HA&W’s ComplianceSuccess® Program:
Habif, Arogeti & Wynne, LLP (HA&W) is the leading CPA firm in the nation to provide ALTA Best Practices compliance benchmarking, readiness and certification reporting through its ComplianceSuccess Program. HA&W's ComplianceSuccess Program provides independent third-party assurance using CPA professional standards on attestation reporting, trusted by banking and financial institutions. Our fast track approach will assess your current level of compliance and provide you with a remediation plan in three to five business days. Our process delivers the best price point to achieve compliance, offering complete compliance benchmarking and reporting across all seven ALTA Best Practices Pillars. To ensure our ComplianceSuccess Program is in lock step with industry standards and requirements, HA&W is actively involved at the highest level with ALTA, AICPA and the Mortgage Bankers Association.

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