August 2, 2010
Title Company Not Liable For Attorney Theft
The New Jersey Supreme Court has held that a title insurance company is not liable for an attorney's theft of funds involved in the real estate transaction. The attorney had already stolen the entrusted funds when the transaction was completed. The court found that there was no agency relationship between the title insurer and the attorney.
The clients had filed a complaint against both the attorney and the title insurance company with the Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection. The fund sought to enforce the award that it had made to the clients, but the claim was dismissed by the trial court as to the company. The Appellate Division reversed the trial court on agency grounds.
Here, the court held that the evidence did not establish liability on the company's part. (Mike Frisch)
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