IRELA – Special Meeting with John Lartz of IDFPR on Proposed Title Insurance Agent Compensation

  • Wednesday, March 14, 2018
  • 8:00 AM
  • Belvedere Events and Banquets, 1170 W Devon Road, Elk Grove Village, Illinois

Special IRELA Meeting on IDFPR Proposed Regulation of
Title Insurance Agent Compensation

Speaker:  John A. Lartz,
Deputy Director of IDFPR Department of Financial Institutions

If You Missed the Recent IDFPR Town Hall Meeting at the Drake, Don’t Miss This Chance for a Second Take. 

  • What concerns have been expressed to IDFPR about title insurance agent compensation and fees charged by title insurance companies?
  • How does the IDPPR plan to address these issues?
  • What do you need to know about the title insurance agent program with which you choose to work?
  • What is the touchstone from IDFPR’s perspective on what compensation arrangements violate the Illinois Title Insurance Act and RESPA?
  • What does the Department consider improper inducements and/or compensation?
  • What does the Department consider improper premium splitting or fee splitting?

    This is a cutting edge meeting about a cutting edge issue — Proposed Guidance for Title Insurance Agent Compensation and subsequent regulation.  All IRELA members are invited to attend this special meeting to hear John A. Lartz of the IDFPR describe the problem as the Department perceives it and to interact with regulatory officials before regulatory steps are taken.   

   IDFPR has indicated that people in the title insurance industry have raised concerns about the process by which title insurance underwriters compensate their agents.  This process of paying a percentage of the premium and/or closing fees that are assessed, known as “splitting premium” or “splitting fees,” appears to be “significantly increasing the costs of closing residential transactions”. 

   Before it is formalized, the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) is proposing guidance and is seeking comments from the title insurance industry, affected peripheral industries (real estate brokers and lenders, etc.) and the general public.  This proposed guidance is neither official legal opinion nor interpretation of law.  IDFPR’s Guidance on Regulation of Title Insurance Agent Compensation can be accessed and downloaded at:

IDFPR Guidance

   IDFPR has asked that we review the proposed regulation and provide feedback.  Comments may be directed to Deputy Director John Lartz of the Division of Financial Institutions, at Please send a copy to The Comment period has been extended to March 20th.

   In addition, ATG’s President and CEO, Peter J. Birnbaum, has submitted a Public Comment on the issues involved and the proposed regulation which can be accessed at:

ATG Public Comment

ATG’s Public Comment discusses the need to curb industry abuses, and brings up other market practices which merit the attention of the Department. The ISBA Ethics Opinion 10-02 mentioned in ATG’s Public Comment is the one dealing with captive title insurance companies and the requirement of avoiding compromising of independent judgment which we have addressed before.  It was promulgated by the ISBA during IRELA Founder and Chair John O’Brien’s term as ISBA President.

IRELA suggests that attorneys think carefully about how you choose the title underwriter(s) with whom you work, and the source and manner of your compensation.

Whether you are a title agent or not, please plan to attend this important meeting.

When:  Wednesday, March 14, 2018 — 8:00 a.m.

Where:  Belvedere Events and Banquets, 1170 W Devon Road, Elk Grove Village, Illinois  |  847.534.0600

MCLE Credit:  1.00 hours MCLE to IRELA members in good standing.

IRELA President Ralph J. Schumann will provide updates on continuing issues with limitations on recording of documents by the Cook County Recorder of Deeds, the IDFPR’s developing position on Title Agent Compensation, the new Illinois Department of Revenue’s State Tax Lien Registry and how it is affecting search procedures and underwriting, the latest developments in the ISBA v. IDFPR litigation regarding the IDFPR’s prosecution of attorneys for the alleged “Unlicensed Practice of Appraisal”, as well as other hot topics.

We wish to thank our meeting sponsor, Attorneys’ Title Guaranty Fund, Inc..

Check out ATG’s new  “There’s Only One” video featuring IRELA Past President Aurora Austriaco, IRELA Board Member T. Nicholas Tyszka, IRELA Chairman and Founder John O’ Brien, and IRELA President Ralph Schumann.

The Illinois Real Estate Lawyers Association believes that all buyers and sellers should be able to retain a qualified, independent attorney to represent their interests in transactions which, more often than not, involve the largest dollar amounts of their lives.

For more information, call 312.600.7720, or email to or

© 2019 by the Illinois Real Estate Lawyers Association. All rights reserved.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software