Updates for the week of: September 7, 2020
Frequently Asked Questions:
Are FCT’s offices open?
- FCT has been classified as an essential business by the Government of Ontario.
- FCT’s offices are operating, but we have encouraged all employees to work from home, where possible.
- We have implemented visitor restrictions and emergency visitors screening procedures. If you are planning to participate in an onsite meeting at one of FCT’s offices, please contact the FCT employee that invited you for instructions on how to gain entrance into the building.
What is FCT doing to ensure safety of employees, customers and partners?
- Instruct employees to adhere to health and government agencies directives including following respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene practices.
- Restriction of non-essential domestic employee travel as per Canadian Government directives and complete restriction for international travel in line with the CDC’s recommendations.
- Requiring all nonessential in-person meetings to be conducted virtually.
- Employees must adhere to social distancing directives (including closure of public spaces within FCT’s offices).
- More frequent office cleaning which includes disinfecting public spaces.
- Instructed all employees to stay home if they are feeling ill or presenting symptoms in line with COVID-19, as well, if family members or close contacts have contracted the virus.
Describe the current operational response strategies that mitigate the impact on your business?
- We have enacted our Pandemic Response Plan and selective Business Continuity Plan procedures and remain focused on minimizing the potential impact on our business and delivering the highest quality of service to our customers.
- This includes:
- FCT already has a mature Business Continuity Management Program in place that was developed based on Industry Best Practices and Standards.
- Business Continuity Plans are in place, updated and tested annually, covering the following scenarios; Pandemic / Mass Absentees, Cyber Attack, Loss of Site, Loss of Supplier/Service Provider, Loss of Technology, Loss of Staff.
- Business Continuity Plan includes Pandemic Response specific plan, which is also in place, updated and tested annually.
- FCT has a mature Business Continuity / Pandemic Response strategy that enables workload shifting between offices across Canada and most of the critical employees have ability to work-remotely with no impact to customers.
Can FCT help in the event of delays or closures of municipal, provincial land titles/registry offices?
- FCT offers extended gap coverage for commercial and residential transactions at no additional cost, allowing you to unconditionally advance mortgage funds and close your transaction even though the closing documents will not be registered that day.
- For commercial real estate transactions, FCT offers new flexible underwriting procedures to help you close your deals even if municipal offices close, causing delays in receiving responses to important inquiries, such as work order searches, real property taxes and municipal agreement compliance.
Given the requirements around social distancing, how will FCT facilitate document execution?
- FCT has developed an alternative solution that seamlessly facilitates these signings virtually, without the need for in-person interaction.
- This process leverages our existing national network of remote signers, lawyers, notaries and commissioners.
- Legal professionals in Ontario can use EasyFundTM to complete payouts without leaving their desk in the event local bank branches are closed, or if employees need to work remotely.
Will I be protected if client identification and verification, execution of documents or commissioning of oaths have been conducted using virtual means?
- Yes! A commercial or residential title insurance policy from FCT will continue to protect you and your clients in the event of an allegation of fraud should you choose to close your real estate transaction utilizing virtual client identification and execution of documents in accordance with the best practices established by your provincial Law Society or Notary Society.
How is FCT managing appraisals during social distancing?
- Our automated products allow FCT to prevent/minimize service disruption. Together with our valued appraiser partners, we can provide lenders with optimal solutions, quick turnaround times and enhanced risk mitigation, all while ensuring service interruptions are avoided and transactions can close as scheduled.
Is FCT providing dispensation around 16 day commitment to insure for lenders, given COVID-19 related delays?
- FCT is now offering lenders a 30-day commitment to insure (CTI) on all deals.
Does the FCT E&O Complete policy provide me with added protection during these changing times?
- E&O Complete acts as a supplemental coverage to your mandatory E&O insurance. It includes both upfront, hassle free settlement should an error or omission be discovered, and a layer of coverage which reimburses you for cost you may face as a result of a claim being made against your mandatory E&O coverage when acting for an owner or lender named as insured under an FCT title insurance policy.
- FCT recently enhanced the coverage for E&O Complete coverage policyholders by expanding the interpretation of what constitutes a Qualifying Real Estate Transaction to include purchase, sale and refinancing transactions that do not close due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- You can learn about FCT’s E&O suite of products at FCT.ca
- Are there resources available to ensure my EasyFundTM transactions are processed smoothly?
Are there any restrictions or limitations to coverage in the event documents are executed remotely?
You can rest assured that a title insurance policy from FCT provides the coverage you’re looking for when processing remote signing of mortgage documents. In fact, we’ve been providing this coverage since the day we opened our doors in 1991. This coverage has been available to our customers before, during and will continue post COVID-19, as per the following sections:
- 5 in the Gold Loan Residential Policy
- 8. in the Platinum Residential Policy
- 2 (iii) and (iv), and 9 (c) and (d) in the Commercial Loan Policy
- 2 (a) in the Commercial Owner Policy
Many of the in-person CPD accredited seminars I was planning on attending have been cancelled due to social distancing. Does FCT offer online-accredited courses that would count toward my annual hours/credits?
Yes, you can visit https://fct.ca/webinars/ for a list of available accredited courses and product knowledge webinars on specific products and services offered by FCT. New courses are added regularly. Please check in daily to find out what’s available in your region.
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