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PA State Counsel

Philadelphia, PA
Full Time
Practice Areas: Real Estate Job #: 114 Exp.: 12+ Years
Job Purpose:
The State Underwriting Counsel’s primary duty is to provide technical underwriting support to agents and direct offices of WFG and to effectively manage the title insurance and other risks undertaken by the company.

Essential Job Functions:
  • Engage in WFG company culture that emphasizes engagement in our 4 Cs, quality of work and high performance.
  • Managing and fielding Underwriting calls, emails and providing underwriting guidance and support.
  • Provide Risk management for WFG – but balanced against revenue and agent relationships.
  • Make decisions based on an “Acceptable Business Risk” standard commensurate with WFG’s size and capital.
  • Respond to underwriting questions, and look for opportunities to educate agents and staff. To explain the “Why” of the answer.
  • Support Agents with non-underwriting legal needs to guide compliance, business practices and other legal counseling (such as proper handling of escrow disputes) etc.
  • Constantly assessing responses to areas that do not generate direct liability for WFG to not provide legal advice for clients, communicate this is not a WFG directive, it is their business decision, and encouraging Agents to discuss with their own attorney and managers, etc.
  • Assist in the formal and informal education of Agents, Direct operations and WFG Production during UW calls/emails and visits with agents and offices.
  • Build and maintain relationships and interactions to support the effort to expand business, add quality agents and to expand the percentage of business WFG does with a given agency or referral source. Regularly visit agents and referral sources, and accompany sales and agency reps on visits.
  • Staying current on the Law in defined States and assist in development of bulletins, newsletter articles, and UW Manuals.
  • Update references on the (under development) WFG Wiki.
  • Bringing new cases, laws and issues to attention of other underwriters and WFG staff.
  • Identify trends, larger issues, solutions that may have relevance in other states or nationally and bring them to UW team’s attention.
  • Support Production In development of exceptions, requirements and exam standards, educating teams, and in open access and explanation.
  • Be a visible part of WFG in the local Bar, Land Title Association and/or other venues as coordinated with the state or area manager and state counsel.
  • Bringing legal and business concerns to underwriting, the legal department or to local leadership is always part of the job.
  • Decide on bulletins required, and coordinate creation and issuance of those bulletins.
  • Maintain Liaison with State Regulators and with counterparts at competitors, real estate fraud prosecutors and enforcers.
  • Mitigate problems and concerns as soon as issues arise.
  • Communicate new cases found, legislative proposals, issues affecting the industry, etc. (So long as not detrimental to WFG interests or raising antitrust issues).
  • Explore statutory protections for sharing fraud prevention information in your state.
  • Participate in industry groups through LTA, State Bar, etc.
  • Monitor legislation in your state.
  • Coordinate & supervise other Underwriters in the state, making sure information flow is good, everyone is current on the law and changes, and that there are consistent positions for key underwriting positions (to minimize shopping of answers within the WFG family).
  • Help design and implement a professional growth path for each U/W.
  • Coordinate production standards for your state (if your state uses NTS production)
  • Assure WFG coverage at/participation in state and national level programs and sharing of the information that develops from those– Real Property Bar, Land Title Association, State Forms Committees, regulatory meetings, Realtors Assoc. Continuous professional development and maintain the professional qualifications of underwriters.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
  • Experience and familiarity in real estate law.
  • Demonstrated practical experience with concepts, practices and procedures of real estate title and settlement process.
  • Strong knowledge of Federal and State regulations related to real estate title insurance and settlement services.
  • Ability to lead others in effectively implementing programs and projects.
  • Exercises confidence, sound judgment and decision making.
  • Ability to diagnose and analyze problems, identifies and drives appropriate solutions, and achieve desired results.
  • Requires abstract thinking and creative solutions.
  • Strategic thinker with the ability to ‘think outside the box’ and make unique yet sound decisions to resolve complex issues.

Basic Qualifications:
  • Graduation from an accredited law school with Juris Doctor Degree and license to practice law.
  • Admitted to practice in states within defined region(s).
  • At least 12 years of experience in title underwriting with responsibility for managing key functions within the business/team.
  • Strong organizational skills with the ability to multi-task, prioritize and work under pressure.
  • Creative problem solving abilities.
  • Excellent communication, interpersonal, and writing skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively and professionally with all levels of employees and agents.
  • Must be able to maintain the highest level of confidentiality. Ability to handle sensitive material concerning the organization and its agents.
  • Team player with a commitment to developing strong collaborative relationships with clients and cross-functional teams.
  • Business acumen, strategic ability, ability to develop others and influence change.
  • Excellent interpersonal and coaching skills.
  • Must successfully pass a criminal history background check.

Preferred Qualifications:
Experience at state insurance regulator’s office.

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Call: (315) 316-1215