Bulletin: CA2017005

Date:
July 10, 2017
To:
All California Issuing Offices
RE:
RATES AND/OR FORMS UPDATE - Rate Manual Update

Dear Associates:

The Stewart Title Guaranty Company Schedule of Charges and Forms for Title Insurance in the State of California ("Manual") has been amended and updated and, pending California Department of Insurance approval, is anticipated to become effective on August 15, 2017. A redline version and a version with those changes accepted are attached as a link for your convenience and posting as required. (Click here to view a copy of the “Redline” and the “Accepted” versions.)

The vast majority of the changes are updates to wording, grammar, and headings for ease of reading and understanding, and for simplification, consistency, and applicability clarifications. There are a couple of new items, a few deletions, and changes to residential refinance S.T.A.R. pricing. To best understand the changes and those which apply to you, the Manual itself should be read thoroughly and carefully in its entirety.

The following is a list of certain substantive, highlighted changes:

  1. Section 1.18 - Volume Pricing. The definition for volume pricing for residential refinances is deleted (notice of which was also provided under a separate bulletin); 
  2. Section 1.25 - Non-Residential Refinance Transactions of $15,000,000 or More. This new section is added for large, non-residential (i.e., commercial) refinance transactions of $15,000,000 or more; 
  3. Section 2.17 - Binders. This section is updated to clarify the calculation of rates for binders and final title policy issuance when the binder converts to a policy; 
  4. Section 3.18 - Stewart Master Residential Loan Policy Schedules A & B (Home Office Issue Only). This section is deleted; 
  5. Section 3.19 - Secondary Market Short Form Residential Loan Policy – One to Four Family (Home Office Issue Only). This section is updated to provide clarity regarding applicability of and limitations of this rate; 
  6. Section 3.20 - Article 9 Comprehensive Plus Policy of Title Insurance (Home Office Issue Only). This section is deleted; 
  7. Section 3.21 - Stewart Title Absolute Rate (S.T.A.R.). The pricing in this section was significantly reduced to be more competitive with the centralized, streamlined refinance rates of other major title insurance underwriters in California;  
  8. Section 10 - Endorsements. This section is updated to reflect some document description changes and to incorporate the Stewart endorsements that are available for use in the State of California. Significantly, for clarification purposes, this section has also been updated to reflect pricing and applicability by referring to "Extended" vs. "Standard" rather than "CLTA" vs. "ALTA." Please always check Section 10 to confirm that the endorsements you are issuing are priced in accordance with the Manual and are applicable to the policy type, e.g., Lender vs. Owner, etc. 

If you have any questions relating to this or other bulletins, please contact a Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter.

For on-line viewing of this and other bulletins, please log onto www.vuwriter.com.

THIS BULLETIN IS FURNISHED TO INFORM YOU OF CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS. AS A REMINDER, YOU ARE CHARGED WITH KNOWLEDGE OF THE CONTENT ON VIRTUAL UNDERWRITER  AS IT EXISTS FROM TIME TO TIME AS IT APPLIES TO YOU, AS WELL AS ANY OTHER INSTRUCTIONS. OUR UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS DO NOT AUTHORIZE OUR ISSUING AGENTS TO ENGAGE IN SETTLEMENTS OR CLOSINGS ON BEHALF OF STEWART TITLE GUARANTY COMPANY. THIS BULLETIN IS NOT INTENDED TO DIRECT YOUR ESCROW OR SETTLEMENT PRACTICES OR TO CHANGE PROVISIONS OF APPLICABLE UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS. CONFIDENTIAL, PROPRIETARY, OR NONPUBLIC PERSONAL INFORMATION SHOULD NEVER BE SHARED OR DISSEMINATED EXCEPT AS ALLOWED BY LAW. IF APPLICABLE STATE LAW OR REGULATION IMPOSES ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS, YOU SHOULD CONTINUE TO COMPLY WITH THOSE REQUIREMENTS.

References

Bulletins Replaced:
None
Related Bulletins:
CA2017004 RATES AND/OR FORMS UPDATE - Notice of Removal of Section 1.18 - Volume Pricing
Underwriting Manual:
None
Exceptions Manual:
None
Forms:
None