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The Co-operators Introduces Protection Against Growing Risk of Real Estate Title Fraud

Dec 5, 2007


    GUELPH, ON, Dec. 5 /CNW/ - Real estate title fraud costs Canadians as
much as $300 million a year according to the Canadian Institute of Mortgage
Brokers and Lenders. With this in mind, The Co-operators announced today that
it has made arrangements with First Canadian Title to offer residential title
insurance protection for existing homeowners. The Co-operators, with over 600
retail outlets in Canada, is the first Canadian-owned multi-product insurance
company to make this coverage available with First Canadian Title.
    Title insurance protects homeowners against challenges to the ownership
of their homes, including title defects, fraud and forgery. Title fraud
includes registration of a fraudulent mortgage against the legitimate owner's
property, and fraudulent sale of real property. Often stolen identities or
forged documents are used to transfer a registered owner's title without their
permission. Once the title is transferred, a fraudster may obtain a mortgage
on the property and arrange to receive the funds.
    In March 2007, The Co-operators added identity theft coverage at no
charge to its home insurance policies. It covers up to $10,000 of costs
associated with recovering or correcting damage to personal identity. Title
insurance, which complements identify theft coverage, covers all legal
expenses and manages the process related to restoring title after fraud or
    "Restoring your title can be very costly both financially and
emotionally," said Kathy Bardswick, president and CEO of The Co-operators.
"For a one-time premium, title insurance can help victims through the
difficult process of reclaiming what is rightfully theirs - their home."
    Title Insurance also protects home ownership from many other title
defects. Coverage may include unmarketability of the land due to matters that
would have been disclosed on an up-to-date survey, lack of legal access to the
property, encroachments onto neighbouring properties and zoning infractions.
    Until recently, residential title insurance was only available at the
time a home was purchased. This coverage launched today is available only to
existing homeowners.

    About The Co-operators:

    The Co-operators is the leading Canadian-owned multi-product insurance
company. Co-operatively owned by a group of Canadian co-operatives, credit
unions and like-minded organizations, The Co-operators is an Imagine Caring
Company, well known for its community involvement.

    About First Canadian Title

    First Canadian Title is Canada's leading provider of title insurance, and
other related products and services for residential and commercial real estate
transactions. Founded in 1991 and based in Oakville, Ontario, First Canadian
Title employs approximately 1,000 people from coast to coast. Its customers
include more than 15,000 lawyers and notaries nationwide, every major Canadian
chartered bank, credit unions, other lending institutions, real estate agents,
mortgage brokers and builders. First Canadian Title is the registered business
name of FCT Insurance Company Ltd. and of the Canadian branch of First
American Title Insurance Company. For more information about First Canadian
Title, please visit

    About The First American Corporation

    The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF) is a FORTUNE 500(R) company
that traces its history to 1889. With revenues of $8.5 billion in 2006, it is
America's largest provider of business information. First American combines
advanced analytics with its vast data resources to supply businesses and
consumers with valuable information products to support the major economic
events of people's lives, such as getting a job, renting an apartment, buying
a car or house, securing a mortgage and opening or buying a business. The
First American Family of Companies, many of which command leading market share
positions in their respective industries, operate within five primary business
segments, including: Title Insurance and Services, Specialty Insurance,
Mortgage Information, Property Information and First Advantage. More
information about the company and an archive of its press releases can be
found at
For further information: Leonard Sharman, The Co-operators,
1-877-795-7272, ext. 2707

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