How HB 133 changed attorney title opinion limitations

Published by: Emily Leite

June 16, 2021 | Government Affairs

Maintaining responsible and competitive mortgage lending practices helps Ohio credit unions remain a vital homebuying resource for members seeking the American dream of homeownership. That is why the League constantly scans the legislative and regulatory horizon for modifications that may inhibit how your credit union lends to members. On June 2, Governor Mike DeWine signed House Bill 133 into law, which immediately modified how legal malpractice claims relating to opinions of title operate. Following malpractice statute of limitation changes in Senate Bill 13, which became effective on June 16, 2021, the new changes in House Bill 133 explicitly protect the former statute of limitations for legal malpractice claims relating to an opinion of title issued before June 16, 2021. For those title opinions issued after June 16, 2021, a title opinion malpractice claim will need to be commenced within one year after the cause of action accrues and for a period up to four years after the malpractice claim occurs. Any title defect malpractice claim action following the four years will be barred from moving forward.

While many Ohio credit unions diligently utilize attorney title opinions in lieu of title insurance for member convenience and affordability, the new malpractice statute of limitations for legal malpractice may modify a credit union’s risk assessment in deploying title opinions in the future. The League will continue working with various interested parties at the Statehouse on the future statute of limitations connected to attorney title opinion malpractice claims. However, to ensure your credit union is best protected in the meantime, we encourage those leveraging attorney title opinions to analyze how many formerly executed attorney title opinions resulted in a malpractice claim and balance that knowledge with how these new changes may impact the risk associated with current mortgage lending policies and processes.

Reach out to Chief Advocacy Officer Emily Leite for additional information on recent changes to attorney tile opinion malpractice limitations and other credit union-specific provisions contained in House Bill 133.

Contact Emily Leite for questions or assistance.

Emily Leite
Emily Leite Chief Advocacy Officer E: eleite@ohiocul.org
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