Category: E&O

1

When the FDIC Comes A’ Knockin’

The implosion of the real estate bubble reverberated across the American landscape.  Neither residential nor commercial markets were spared.  This implosion not only had a very palpable effect on the economy, but on the political debate of this nation as well.  That political debate—as it seems is often the case—has turned to finger-pointing.  Those fingers have now curled up into a fist, and that fist is now knocking on the doors of appraisers across the country. In the aftermath of the economic downturn, many banks were taken over by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) after their balance sheets dived...

0

Overtime Lawsuits Continue to Spread

Overtime Lawsuits Continue to Spread Among Valuation-Related Companies — Interthinx Becomes the Latest Defendant First it was Integrated Asset Services.  In February, I wrote here about three employee overtime class actions affecting the Colorado AMC filed on behalf of “timeline managers,” “valuation managers” and “quality reviewers.”  Then it was LandSafe Appraisal.  In April, I wrote an article about a newly filed overtime lawsuit by staff appraisers against that company. There is definitely now a small wave of overtime litigation unde the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) affecting businesses in valuation-related fields.  The industry has become an easy target for...

New tactic by NAHB and NAR 2

NAHB & NAR Tactic – If They Said It, It Must Be True

New tactic by the NAR and NAHB to get appraisers to “play ball” CNN Money recently published a piece (located here) titled “Home appraisals no longer derailing sales”, a quote generically attributed to members of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). What struck me as a bit odd was the fact that just about a year ago, the NAR in conjunction with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) stated in another article on home sales and appraisals that roughly 1/3 of the deals placed into contract by its realtor members were failing to close due to problems getting appraisers...

FNMA 2075 a ticking time bomb 1

2075 FNMA Form a Ticking Time Bomb?

Is Fannie Mae Form 2075 a ticking time bomb for Appraiser? Fannie Mae Form 2075 (aka the “Desktop Underwriter Property Inspection Report”) seems innocuous enough when you pick it up and look at it. After all, it’s only a single page with just one-half page of instructions. It allegedly applies only to low risk loans and the form has been around and in use for a long time. The instructions even clearly state it “is not an appraisal report”. The instructions go on to say this report may be used without an estimate of fair market value of the property...

Another Overtime Class Action Filed Against an AMC - Imagecredit Flickr - moppet65535 1

Another Overtime Class Action Filed Against an AMC

A lawsuit filed last week by a former staff appraiser against LandSafe Appraisal Services, Inc. exemplifies the overtime liability risk faced by many appraisal firms and appraisal management companies. In February, I wrote that overtime lawsuits by appraisers present a genuine liability risk to appraisal firms and AMCs.  In that article, I explained some of the special issues relating to whether appraisers properly can be treated as “exempt” employees for purposes of overtime compensation.  The real-world risk to an appraisal firm or AMC is that a staff appraiser will file a legal action alleging that he or she worked more...

URAR pandoras box 0

URAR Form Ambiguities and Liabilities

Revisiting The Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac 2005 URAR Form Ambiguities and Liabilities It has been eight years since the URAR form was revised. From 2005 to mid-2008, the real estate market experienced a boom and a bust the likes of which we have never seen before, and we are finally seeing a slow recovery. Also during this period, the economic recession and poor lending practices lead to new regulations in both the appraisal and banking industries. Based on the new regulations, Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac mandated appraisers to add more information to the URAR form. As of March 2009, the Market Conditions...

You’re Safe From the MRLG (Unless You Have E&O Insurance) 3

You’re Safe From the MRLG (Unless You Have E&O Insurance)

Since we last wrote about the unusual subpoenas coming from the offices of the FDIC through the law firm called the Mortgage Recovery Law Group (MRLG), we’ve learned some interesting things that you need to know. To read the original blog post “What to do if you get a subpoena from the FDIC”, CLICK HERE. First, the MRLG contracted with the FDIC in late 2010 to pursue collection of losses for the FDIC resulting from the many bank failures caused by the economic (real estate) downturn. Of particular interest is that the MRLG is not working on a contingency fee...

Court evidence & appraisers workfile 1

Court Evidence & Your Workfile

How a Few Key Items in your Work File Can Protect You in Court I used to work with someone who had a photographic memory. Most of us are not so lucky, and have to rely on our imperfect memories and good note-taking skills. As an attorney, I document everything. I handle hundreds of cases, and without good documentation I will not remember what I did on a particular day or what support I had for a particular theory. As an appraiser, your work file is your documentation.  Not only is a work file a USPAP requirement1, it can help...

1

E&O & Claims Issues for Today’s Appraiser

The significant increase in insurance claims and disciplinary complaints against appraisers over the last few years is directly related to the foreclosure phenomenon and subsequent pattern of appraisal reviews performed during the last decade. The validity of both the process and results of these forensic reviews may have little relationship to the subsequent actions by those seeking the deep pockets of the appraiser and their insurance carriers to recover monies lost in bad loans. This trend shows no sign of diminishing. It remains incumbent upon appraisers to understand their errors and omissions insurance policies, any available risk management services available...

3

Read That Agreement Before You Sign or Leap

Having the most unfair agreement will cause the lender or AMC to lose those appraisers I recently ran across the provision below in a new contractor agreement between an AMC and its panel appraisers, when one of LIA’s insured appraisers asked me to take a look at the agreement. The contract contained the average indemnification provision found in most unfair AMC contracts in which an appraiser promises to defend and reimburse the AMC for “any and all liabilities, damages, costs and expenses (including all legal fees) arising out of or relating to any claim, action, suit, complaint, liability, damage, or other...

xml sitemap