FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF FINANCIAL SERVICES

                                    FLORIDA DEpARTMENT OF
                                    FINANCIAL SERvICES
                                    DIvISION OF INSURANCE FRAUD
                                    200 E. Gaines Street
                                    Tallahassee, FL 32399-0323
                                                                                      Join Florida’s CFO Alex Sink in the
                                                                                      battle to curb mortgage fraud

                                                                                      THE ROLE OF TITLE
                                                                                      AGENTS IN COMBATING
                                                                                      MORTGAGE FRAUD SCHEMES

Don’t put your reputation, career
and freedom at risk. Instead,
be part of the solution and
report suspected mortgage
fraud to the DFS Fraud Hotline
1-800-378-0445 or on the web

                                          DFS Fraud Hotline

                                          Alex Sink
                                          Chief finAnCiAl OffiCer
                                          StAte Of flOridA                                    Alex Sink
                                                                                              Chief finAnCiAl OffiCer
                                          Florida Department of Financial Services
                                                                                              StAte Of flOridA
                                          Division of Insurance Fraud
                                          200 East Gaines Street                              Florida Department of Financial Services
                                          Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0323
                                                        wHERE DOES MORTGAGE                                 HOw CAN TITLE AGENTS HELp
                                                        FRAUD OCCUR?                                        COMBAT MORTGAGE FRAUD?
                                                         Mortgage fraud knows no boundaries; it occurs       Title agents play an important role in the real
                                                         in the smallest neighborhoods and in the most       estate transaction. They are entrusted with
                                                         affluent gated communities.                         a fiduciary responsibility to close real estate
                                                                                                             transactions and disperse funds in accordance
                                                                                                             with Florida Statute 626.8473.

                                                                                                             Title agents can be a first-line defense against
                                                        wHAT IS MORTGAGE FRAUD?                              mortgage fraud by reporting suspicious real
                                                                                                             estate transactions such as:
                                                         Under Florida’s mortgage fraud law, (FS 817.545)
                                                         the crime is defined, in part, as a material            •   Illegal property flipping
HOw DOES MORTGAGE FRAUD                                  misstatement, misrepresentation or omission             •   Real Estate Appraisal Fraud
                                                         relied upon by a lender, borrower or anyone
AFFECT OUR COMMUNITIES?                                  involved in the mortgage lending process to             •   Illegal Straw Buyers
 Mortgage fraud can have many adverse                    fund, purchase or insure a loan.                        •   Suspected identity theft
 consequences for both the consumer and                                                                          •   Silent seconds
 the community. Specifically, mortgage                   Mortgage fraud occurs when a consumer or
                                                                                                                 •   Foreclosure bailout schemes
 fraud can result in:                                    mortgage industry professional provides or
                                                         intentionally uses incorrect information that is        •   Reverse mortgage scams
    •   Unrealistically inflated property values         relied upon by an underwriter or lender to cause
    •   Higher interest rates                            them to fund, purchase or insure a mortgage
                                                         loan which they otherwise would not have
    •   Identity theft
                                                         approved. The intentional omission of certain
    •   Compromised credit ratings                       information, such as the borrower’s self
    •   Higher property taxes                            employment status or true source of funds used
    •   Defaulted loans and foreclosed properties        for the down payment, earnest money deposit
        resulting in the inability to sell a home due    and/or buyer’s closing funds, can also be
        to factors such as lower property values         considered an act of mortgage fraud. Mortgage
        and deterioration of neighborhoods caused        fraud may occur with or without the knowledge
        by increased crime and abandonment of            or active participation of the borrower.
        nearby properties

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