07 Nov We Still “Like” You!
One of our priorities here at American Trust Escrow is to ensure we keep you informed about topics affecting our industry! So, we wanted to share with you a few details about a pretty hot topic: Social media + RESPA
We all love social media. It’s awesome! It allows us to stay in touch with friends, family and colleagues and lets us show them we care about what’s going on in their lives.
But, unfortunately, it has opened the doors to legalities around the type of relationships that companies like ours can have with you online.
Recently, regulators have been closely analyzing and cracking down on social media business arrangements that violate RESPA’s anti-kickback provisions and other anti-steering laws.
So what does this mean? Here’s an example: Here in California, something as simple as a Facebook “like” can lead companies receiving a cease-and-desist letter from the Department of Business Oversight (DBO), which supervises state-licensed financial institutions like banks, loan originators, broker-dealers and escrow agents.
But it’s not that straightforward.
Our team can ‘like’ a photo of your vacation or wish you a happy birthday, but we can’t ‘like’ anything you post related to a new listing or open house.
You might be thinking to yourself, “but, why?”
Basically, it boils down to certain types of “likes” being seen as promoting actions and giving a “Thing of value” – a big no-no when it comes to RESPA.
Since these rules are somewhat vague and open to interpretation, there’s a lot of talk around what’s a violation and what’s not.
So what does this all mean?
We love what we do as a company. We live to provide you with impeccable service. In turn, we want to be around for the long haul. To ensure this is possible, we will closely follow all of the rules that exist around this topic.
We just wanted to remind you that we like you, even if we can’t like your page!
Of course, please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or are interested in learning more about this topic. As always, we’re here to lend a helping hand whenever we can!