Notary Direct Nationwide Receives Best Practices Certification

Notary Direct Nationwide LLC, a national signing service provider based in Huntington Beach, Calif., and St. Augustine, Fla., recently became certified in accordance with American Land Title Association’s Title Insurance and Settlement Company Best Practices.

National Certified Public Accounting and consulting firm Pershing, Yoakley & Associates (PYA) provided the assessment and certification.

“With the new regulations and requirements that our clients are facing, we wanted to assist in any way possible,” said Shannon Seitzinger, president of Notary Direct Nationwide. “We felt that not having to struggle with third-party oversight was a great start. We are proud to present this certification as a sign of our commitment to adhering to all Best Practices policies and procedures. We chose PYA because they are one of the first qualified firms to offer a rigorous certification process and because of their experience working with ALTA’s Best Practices and CFPB regulations.”

Regulators’ increased demand to protect consumers has forced lenders to adjust their relationships with service providers and be more sensitive to the types of companies they do business with. To help meet this need, ALTA created the Best Practices framework to help members highlight policies and procedures the industry exercises to protect lenders and consumers. The third pillar of ALTA’s Best Practices focuses on data security and the protection of the consumer’s nonpublic information (NPI), in accordance with the mandates of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.

“Lenders are now responsible for the actions of all third party vendors,” said Michelle Jacobson, chief compliance officer of Notary Direct. “Notary Direct Nationwide had the required infrastructure in place to meet the ALTA Best Practices applied to lenders and title companies as relates to a signing service. With the guidance of PYA, we were able to meet expectations, obtain the certification and know that we remain ahead of the curve regarding regulatory requirements. Notary Direct Nationwide is positioned to be an exceptional partner to our clients and ensure those responsibilities are consistently met.”

Burns, Henry & Kirksey, P.C., Achieves ALTA Best Practices Certification

BH&K LogoCleveland, Tennessee law firm and title company, Burns, Henry & Kirksey, P.C., (BHK), recently achieved compliance with title industry Best Practices as set forth by the American Land Title Association (ALTA).

BHK chose to pursue certification out of a commitment to their clients, to improve upon the services they offer, and to earn the trust of those with whom they do business.  According to Travis D. Henry, attorney and partner with BHK, “We now can assure those with whom we do business that we are compliant with ALTA Best Practices, but we don’t want them to just take our word for it.  We want to prove to lenders, realtors, buyers, and sellers that we are committed to the privacy and security of their information, and to offering the highest level of protection and the best closing experience in our community.”

As regulators have recently increased their demands for protective measures throughout title and settlement procedures, ALTA created the Best Practices Framework to help title and settlement agents prepare policies and procedures to protect lenders and consumers.  Best Practices certification comes after a rigorous third-party assessment covering all areas of title and settlement services, including licensing, escrow trust accounting controls, privacy and information security, written policies and procedures, liability and fidelity insurance confirmation, and guidelines for customer relationship management.

BHK enlisted the assistance of national certified public accounting and management consulting firm PYA (Pershing Yoakley & Associates, P.C.) to perform the third-party assessment and certification.

Henry said, “PYA was our partner as we worked to become compliant with ALTA Best Practices and underwent the certification process.  They were our guide through the pillars and helped us structure our business around each one.  Their approach shows you how to succeed rather than simply pointing out your deficiencies.”

With this certification, BHK is now poised to demonstrate to consumers, lenders, and the industry its compliance with ALTA Best Practices.  For more information, visit the BHK website,

About Burns, Henry & Kirksey, P.C.

Burns, Henry & Kirksey, P.C., was founded in 1992 by attorneys Robert Varnell, Charles B. Burns, Jr., and J. Michael Sharp.  The firm is wholly-owned and operated by the partners of the firm, Travis D. Henry, Esq. (who focuses in Residential and Commercial Closings, Residential and Commercial Subdivision Development, and Real Estate Litigation) and Bryson M. Kirksey, Esq., CPA, LL.M in Taxation, AEP® (who focuses in Wills, Trusts, and Probate, Business Formation and Succession and Tax Planning).  We represent lenders, buyers, sellers, realtors, surveyors, builders, developers, and contractors for all their real estate needs.

“Buying a home is a critical investment.  Anyone buying, selling or refinancing real estate should let their lender and realtor know they want a certified title company handling their closing,” Henry said.  “We are ready to make the closing process easy and positive for our community.”

Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc., Receives ALTA Best Practices Certification

Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc., a regional title and settlement services provider based in Nashville and Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, recently achieved compliance with title industry Best Practices as set forth by the American Land Title Association (ALTA).

Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc., is now part of the elite, but continually growing, group of ALTA Best Practices certified companies.  With this certification, Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc., has proven its continued commitment, not only to regulators and lenders, but to all consumers, ensuring a positive and compliant real estate settlement experience.

According to Jill Connors, vice president of Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc., “Receiving certification ensures that our company, customers, and stakeholders can take additional comfort in the knowledge that we’ve submitted to, and successfully passed, a rigorous, independent third-party certification by a highly qualified audit organization.  Furthermore, it increases the level of trust that the individuals and companies doing business with us can place in the quality of our compliance policies and practices.”

National certified public accounting and management consulting firm PYA (Pershing Yoakley & Associates, P.C.) provided the third-party assessment and certification services for Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc.

Connors said, “PYA provided thorough, comprehensive testing to ensure compliance with ALTA Best Practices across all phases of business operations, with excellent guidance on required information for submission and interactive tools for secure online submission of required information.  We felt the certification process provided by PYA was rigorous, thorough, and fair in all respects.”

In order to ensure the protection of consumers’ non-public personal information, regulators have increased the demand for protective measures throughout title and settlement procedures.  Due to this oversight, lenders are reviewing their relationships with service providers and becoming more sensitive to the types of companies with which they do business.  To help meet this need, ALTA created the Best Practices Framework to help title and settlement agents prepare policies and procedures to protect lenders and consumers.

Connors explained, “We felt it was important to obtain independent testing and verification of our ALTA Best Practices compliance policies and procedures for the sake of ensuring delivery of the best services possible for our customers, as well as to meet the needs of lenders and other process stakeholders for independent third-party certification of our compliance with ALTA Best Practices and CFPB Regulations.”

Visit the Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc., website,, to learn more.

For questions regarding the Best Practices Framework, visit the ALTA website at


About Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc.

Lawyer’s Escrow Service, Inc. (LES) is a Nashville, Tennessee-based full-service title, settlement, and escrow company serving Davidson and surrounding counties in Tennessee continuously since 1975.  LES is a trusted provider of title insurance via Stewart Title Guaranty Company and is affiliated with the law firm of Bennett & Pressley, P.C. to ensure the ability to provide a full array of real estate transaction related services.


New Title Industry Blog Communicates CPA Perspective of Reaching a Higher Compliance Standard

Gene Blog ProfileNationally certified public accounting and consulting firm PYA (Pershing Yoakley & Associates, P.C.) announces the launch of a new blog designed to enhance communication between the title and closing community and the world of accounting. 

Nationally certified public accounting and consulting firm PYA has announced the launch of a new blog for the title and closing community that offers unique perspective from inside a CPA firm.   At the blog’s helm will be 35-year title industry veteran Eugene McCullough, PYA’s Director of Title Industry Services within the ALTA Best Practices service line.  McCullough joined PYA with the goal of aiding the Firm’s efforts to understand and communicate with the title insurance community.  Now also an accounting firm “insider,” McCullough will serve as a liaison between these industries, and through this new blog, will help facilitate communication and address issues of importance to each.

“It is my hope that the insights shared in the blog will provide assistance to title professionals when interfacing with the CPA community, especially when considering some level of Best Practices assessment,” McCullough said.  “Through my work at PYA, I have become familiar with the technical jargon and accounting industry processes routinely used by CPAs.  This blog will allow us to share that insight with title agents in a way that connects both professions.”

McCullough’s more-than-three decades’ experience informs both ways—his PYA colleagues have benefitted from learning how title and closing agents conduct day-to-day business, how they interact with consumers and lenders, and how title and closing practices vary from state to state.

In coming weeks via this new forum, PYA will release a series of blogs designed to offer pertinent information to those seeking independent third-party certification of compliance with the ALTA Best Practices Framework 2.0.  The series will address current lender requirements for Best Practices adherence, analyze Best Practices adoption data, explore motivating forces behind lender requirements, consider options for demonstrating compliance, and examine pitfalls of self-certification.

PYA helped initiate efforts that would help title agents navigate the complex regulatory environment and attain compliance in accordance with ALTA Best Practices.  PYA devotes an entire team to helping title agencies address lender requirements; prepare, evaluate, and implement ALTA Best Practices policies and procedures; assess compliance; and work toward certification.

Visit the blog: