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Fannie Mae prohibits technology vendors from charging attorneys

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Attorneys and trustees assigned a Fannie Mae mortgage loan can no longer be charged any technology or electronic invoice submission fees by the servicer or a third-party vendor used by the servicer effective Feb. 1, 2011. Fannie Mae made the announcement Monday. On Sept. 1, Fannie limited the amount vendors could charge attorneys for technology and invoicing fees to $25 per loan and $10 for submitting electronic invoices. It also prohibited any servicer from requiring or encouraging attorneys to use specified vendors. But for any referral on or after Feb. 1, "attorneys and trustees handling Fannie Mae mortgage loans may no longer directly or indirectly be charged any technology or electronic invoice submission fees by the servicer or any outsourcing companies or third-party vendors utilized by the servicer," according to the announcement. The charges include fees charged on a per loan or "click charge" basis, or any fees for entering data into the servicer's systems. Fannie Mae directed its servicers to pay the companies or third-party vendors for any fees and to ensure that attorneys and trustees are allowed to integrate those systems without cost. But for foreclosure or bankruptcy referrals on or after that same date, Fannie said it would reimburse servicers for those technology and electronic invoice submission fees up to the limit set in September. Fannie also gave servicers one more direction. Servicers are prohibited from entering into an arrangement with any outsourcing company in which it receives a benefit, such as lower charges, for referring a foreclosure matter on a Fannie Mae loan to a particular attorney or trustee. "Outsourcing companies or third party vendors must not be permitted to directly or indirectly select (or influence the selection of) the attorneys and trustees to be used on Fannie Mae mortgage loans," according to the announcement. Write to Jon Prior.

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