July 17, 2019
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Senate Bill 1824

Senate Bill sb1824er

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  1                                 

  2         An act relating to mortgages; amending s.

  3         494.001, F.S.; revising definitions; amending

  4         s. 494.0014, F.S.; authorizing the Office of

  5         Financial Regulation to impose fines; amending

  6         s. 494.0029, F.S.; authorizing the office to

  7         take certain adverse actions on permits of

  8         certain mortgage business schools; providing

  9         additional requirements for such schools;

10         amending s. 494.00295, F.S.; providing an

11         additional professional continuing education

12         requirement; authorizing the office to offer

13         professional continuing education programs;

14         specifying requirements for electronically

15         transmitted and distance education courses;

16         amending s. 494.0033, F.S.; revising mortgage

17         broker license applicant requirements;

18         authorizing an additional fee for reviewing

19         mortgage broker's license tests; providing for

20         review of the testing process; amending s.

21         494.0038, F.S.; providing additional disclosure

22         requirements for mortgage brokerage businesses;

23         amending s. 494.004, F.S.; specifying an

24         additional notification requirement for

25         mortgage broker licensees; authorizing a

26         borrower to waive notification under certain

27         circumstances; providing waiver requirements;

28         amending s. 494.0041, F.S.; specifying

29         additional acts constituting grounds for

30         certain disciplinary actions; providing for

31         fines and penalties; amending s. 494.0064,


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 1         F.S.; providing additional requirements for

 2         renewals of mortgage lender's licenses;

 3         amending s. 494.0067, F.S.; providing

 4         additional requirements for mortgage lender

 5         licensees; providing disclosure and

 6         notification requirements; authorizing a

 7         borrower to waive notification under certain

 8         circumstances; providing waiver requirements;

 9         amending s. 494.0072, F.S.; specifying

10         additional acts constituting grounds for

11         certain disciplinary actions; providing fines

12         and penalties; amending s. 494.0073, F.S.;

13         providing for application of certain provisions

14         to mortgage brokerage businesses; providing for

15         adoption of rules by the Financial Services

16         Commission; creating s. 817.545, F.S.; defining

17         the term "mortgage lending process"; specifying

18         the elements of the offense of mortgage fraud;

19         providing for venue with respect to the

20         committed offense; providing that a person who

21         commits the offense of mortgage fraud commits a

22         felony of the third degree; providing criminal

23         penalties; providing an effective date.

24  

25  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:

26  

27         Section 1.  Subsection (2) of section 494.001, Florida

28  Statutes, is amended, and subsections (32), (33), and (34) are

29  added to that section, to read:

30         494.001  Definitions.--As used in ss. 494.001-494.0077,

31  the term:


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 1         (2)  "Act as a loan originator" means being employed by

 2  a mortgage lender or correspondent mortgage lender, for

 3  compensation or gain or in the expectation of compensation or

 4  gain, to negotiate, or offer to negotiate, or assist any

 5  licensed or exempt entity in negotiating the making of a

 6  mortgage loan, including, but not limited to, working with a

 7  licensed or exempt entity to structure a loan or discussing

 8  terms and conditions necessary for the delivery of a loan

 9  product. A natural person whose activities are ministerial and

10  clerical, which may include quoting available interest rates

11  or loan terms and conditions, is not acting as a loan

12  originator.

13         (32)  "Mortgage loan application" means a submission of

14  a borrower's financial information in anticipation of a credit

15  decision, whether written or computer-generated, relating to a

16  mortgage loan. If the submission does not state or identify a

17  specific property, the submission is an application for a

18  prequalification and not an application for a mortgage loan

19  under this part. The subsequent addition of an identified

20  property to the submission converts the submission to an

21  application for a mortgage loan.

22         (33)  "Mortgage brokerage fee" means the total

23  compensation to be received by a mortgage brokerage business

24  for acting as a mortgage broker.

25         (34)  "Business day" means any calendar day except

26  Sunday or a legal holiday.

27         Section 2.  Section 494.0014, Florida Statutes, is

28  amended to read:

29         494.0014  Cease and desist orders; administrative

30  fines; refund orders.--

31  


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 1         (1)  The office has the power to issue and serve upon

 2  any person an order to cease and desist and to take corrective

 3  action whenever it has reason to believe the person is

 4  violating, has violated, or is about to violate any provision

 5  of ss. 494.001-494.0077, any rule or order issued under ss.

 6  494.001-494.0077, or any written agreement between the person

 7  and the office. All procedural matters relating to issuance

 8  and enforcement of such a cease and desist order are governed

 9  by the Administrative Procedure Act.

10         (2)  The office has the power to order the refund of

11  any fee directly or indirectly assessed and charged on a

12  mortgage loan transaction which is unauthorized or exceeds the

13  maximum fee specifically authorized in ss. 494.001-494.0077.

14         (3)  The office may prohibit the association by a

15  mortgage broker business, or the employment by a mortgage

16  lender or correspondent mortgage lender, of any person who has

17  engaged in a pattern of misconduct while an associate of a

18  mortgage brokerage business or an employee of a mortgage

19  lender or correspondent mortgage lender. For the purpose of

20  this subsection, the term "pattern of misconduct" means the

21  commission of three or more violations of ss. 494.001-494.0077

22  or the provisions of chapter 494 in effect prior to October 1,

23  1991, during any 1-year period or any criminal conviction for

24  violating ss. 494.001-494.0077 or the provisions of chapter

25  494 in effect prior to October 1, 1991.

26         (4)  The office may impose upon any person who makes or

27  brokers a loan, or any mortgage business school, a fine for

28  violations of any provision of ss. 494.001-494.00295 or any

29  rule or order issued under ss. 494.001-494.00295 in an amount

30  not exceeding $5,000 for each separate count or offense.

31  


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 1         Section 3.  Paragraph (f) is added to subsection (1)

 2  and paragraphs (g) and (h) are added to subsection (2) of

 3  section 494.0029, Florida Statutes, to read:

 4         494.0029  Mortgage business schools.--

 5         (1)

 6         (f)  In addition to the remedies set forth in s.

 7  494.0014, the office may revoke, suspend, or place on

 8  probation the permit of any mortgage business school that

 9  fails to meet the requirements of this section, subject to all

10  reasonable conditions that the office specifies.

11         (2)

12         (g)  A school permitted under this section must conduct

13  classes on the basis of a 50-minute classroom hour in

14  accordance with the requirements of this chapter and

15  commission rules.

16         (h)  Each school permitted under this section is

17  responsible for developing procedures to confirm, and for

18  actually confirming, the identity of each student attending

19  any course offering.

20         Section 4.  Section 494.00295, Florida Statutes, is

21  amended to read:

22         494.00295  Professional continuing education.--

23         (1)  Mortgage brokers, and the principal

24  representatives and loan originators of a mortgage lender,

25  correspondent mortgage lender, or mortgage lender pursuant to

26  s. 494.0065, must successfully complete at least 14 hours of

27  professional continuing education covering primary and

28  subordinate mortgage financing transactions and the provisions

29  of this chapter during the 2-year period immediately preceding

30  the renewal deadline for a mortgage broker, mortgage lender,

31  correspondent mortgage lender, or mortgage lender pursuant to


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 1  s. 494.0065. A minimum of 4 hours shall cover the provisions

 2  of this chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter. At

 3  the time of license renewal, a licensee must certify to the

 4  office that the professional continuing education requirements

 5  of this section have been met. Licensees shall maintain

 6  records documenting compliance with this subsection for a

 7  period of 4 years. The requirements for professional

 8  continuing education are waived for the license renewal of a

 9  mortgage broker who has completed the 24-hour prelicensing

10  classroom education requirement of s. 494.0033(3) within 90

11  days of for the biennial license period immediately following

12  the period in which the person became licensed as a mortgage

13  broker. The requirements for professional continuing education

14  for a principal representative are waived for the license

15  renewal of a mortgage lender, correspondent mortgage lender,

16  or mortgage lender pursuant to s. 494.0065 for the biennial

17  license period immediately following the period in which the

18  principal representative completed the 24 hours of classroom

19  education and passed a written test in order to qualify to be

20  a principal representative.

21         (2)  Professional continuing education programs must

22  contribute directly to the professional competency of the

23  participants, may only be offered by permitted mortgage

24  business schools, the office, or entities specifically

25  exempted from permitting as mortgage business schools, and may

26  include electronically transmitted or distance education

27  courses.

28         (3)(a)  All electronically transmitted courses shall

29  require that the time spent attending electronically

30  transmitted professional education courses is equal to the

31  number of qualifying hours awarded to participants for course


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 1  attendance. Before allowing a course participant to complete a

 2  course and receive a certificate of course completion, the

 3  course provider shall ensure that the course participant has:

 4         1.  Logged the required number of hours for the

 5  particular timed module.

 6         2.  Completed a test that comprehensively covers the

 7  course content for the particular timed module.

 8         3.  Correctly answered all test questions for the

 9  particular timed module.

10         (b)  All distance education course participants shall

11  successfully complete a test that comprehensively covers

12  course content in order to receive a certificate of course

13  completion. Distance education providers shall not provide

14  answers to test questions to course participants and shall not

15  issue a certificate of course completion to any course

16  participant who has failed to correctly answer at least 75

17  percent of the total test questions. The test must consist of

18  at least 100 questions.

19         (4)(3)  The commission shall adopt rules pursuant to

20  ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 necessary to administer this

21  section, including rules governing qualifying hours for

22  professional continuing education programs and standards for

23  electronically transmitted or distance education courses,

24  including course completion requirements.

25         Section 5.  Paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (2) of

26  section 494.0033, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:

27         494.0033  Mortgage broker's license.--

28         (2)  Each initial application for a mortgage broker's

29  license must be in the form prescribed by rule of the

30  commission. The commission may require each applicant to

31  provide any information reasonably necessary to make a


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 1  determination of the applicant's eligibility for licensure.

 2  The office shall issue an initial license to any natural

 3  person who:

 4         (a)  Is at least 18 years of age and has a high school

 5  diploma or its equivalent.

 6         (b)  Has passed a written test adopted and administered

 7  by the office, or has passed an electronic test adopted and

 8  administered by the office or a third party approved by the

 9  office, which is designed to determine competency in primary

10  and subordinate mortgage financing transactions as well as to

11  test knowledge of ss. 494.001-494.0077 and the rules adopted

12  pursuant thereto. The commission may prescribe by rule an

13  additional fee that may not exceed $100 for the electronic

14  version of the mortgage broker test. The commission may waive

15  by rule the examination requirement for any person who has

16  passed a test approved by the Conference of State Bank

17  Supervisors, the American Association of Residential Mortgage

18  Regulators, or the United States Department of Housing and

19  Urban Development if the test covers primary and subordinate

20  mortgage financing transactions. The commission may adopt

21  rules prescribing an additional fee that may not exceed $50

22  for an applicant to review his or her completed and graded

23  mortgage broker test. The commission may adopt rules regarding

24  the administration of the testing process, including, but not

25  limited to, procedures relating to pretest registration, test

26  security, scoring, content, result notification, retest

27  procedures and fees, postexamination review, and challenge

28  provisions.

29  

30  The commission may require by rule information concerning any

31  such applicant or person, including, but not limited to, his


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 1  or her full name and any other names by which he or she may

 2  have been known, age, social security number, qualifications

 3  and educational and business history, and disciplinary and

 4  criminal history.

 5         Section 6.  Section 494.0038, Florida Statutes, is

 6  amended to read:

 7         494.0038  Mortgage broker disclosures.--

 8         (1)(a)1.  A person may not receive a mortgage brokerage

 9  fee for acting as a mortgage brokerage business except

10  pursuant to a written mortgage brokerage agreement between the

11  mortgage brokerage business and the borrower which is signed

12  and dated by the business and the borrower.

13         2.  The written mortgage brokerage agreement must

14  describe the services to be provided by the mortgage brokerage

15  business and specify the amount and terms of the mortgage

16  brokerage fee that the mortgage brokerage business is to

17  receive. The written mortgage brokerage agreement must be

18  executed within 3 business days after a mortgage loan

19  application is accepted if the borrower is present when the

20  application is accepted. If the borrower is not present when

21  such an application is accepted, the licensee shall forward

22  the written mortgage brokerage agreement to the borrower

23  within 3 business days after the licensee's acceptance of the

24  application and the licensee bears the burden of proving that

25  the borrower received and approved the written mortgage

26  brokerage agreement.

27         (b)1.  If the mortgage brokerage business is to receive

28  any payment of any kind from the lender, the maximum total

29  dollar amount of the payment must be disclosed to the borrower

30  in the written mortgage brokerage agreement as described in

31  paragraph (a). The commission may prescribe by rule an


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 1  acceptable form for disclosure of brokerage fees received from

 2  the lender. The mortgage brokerage agreement must state the

 3  nature of the relationship with the lender, describe how

 4  compensation is paid by the lender, and describe how the

 5  mortgage interest rate affects the compensation paid to the

 6  mortgage brokerage business. If any of the rates, points,

 7  fees, and other terms quoted by or on behalf of the lender are

 8  to be received by the mortgage brokerage business, such fact

 9  shall be specifically disclosed to the borrower.

10         2.  The exact amount of any payment of any kind by the

11  lender to the mortgage brokerage business must be disclosed in

12  writing to the borrower within 3 business days after the

13  mortgage brokerage business is made aware of the exact amount

14  of the payment from the lender but not less than 3 business

15  days before the execution of the closing or settlement

16  statement. The licensee bears the burden of proving such

17  notification was provided to the borrower. If the mortgage

18  brokerage fee is for brokering a loan for a particular program

19  under which the brokerage fee varies according to the terms of

20  the loan, the brokerage fee may be disclosed as a range of

21  fees at the time of application. The mortgage broker shall, in

22  such instance, disclose the nature of the fee arrangement to

23  the borrower, and the exact amount of the fee must be

24  disclosed at settlement or closing.

25         (c)  The commission may prescribe by rule the form of

26  disclosure of brokerage fees.

27         (2)  At the time a written mortgage brokerage agreement

28  is executed by the borrower or forwarded to the borrower for

29  execution, or at the time the mortgage brokerage business

30  accepts an application fee, credit report fee, property

31  appraisal fee, or any other third-party fee, but not less than


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 1  3 business days before execution of the closing or settlement

 2  statement, the mortgage brokerage business shall disclose in

 3  writing to any applicant for a mortgage loan the following

 4  information:

 5         (a)  That such mortgage brokerage business may not make

 6  mortgage loans or commitments. The mortgage brokerage business

 7  may make a commitment and may furnish a lock-in of the rate

 8  and program on behalf of the lender when the mortgage

 9  brokerage business has obtained a written commitment or

10  lock-in for the loan from the lender on behalf of the borrower

11  for the loan. The commitment must be in the same form and

12  substance as issued by the lender.

13         (b)  That such mortgage brokerage business cannot

14  guarantee acceptance into any particular loan program or

15  promise any specific loan terms or conditions.

16         (c)  A good faith estimate, signed and dated by the

17  borrower, which discloses of the total amount of each of the

18  fees which the borrower may reasonably expect to pay if the

19  loan is closed, including, but not limited to, fees earned by

20  the mortgage brokerage business, lender fees, third-party

21  fees, and official fees, together with credit report fee,

22  property appraisal fee, or any other third-party fee and the

23  terms and conditions for obtaining a refund of such fees, if

24  any. Any amount collected in excess of the actual cost shall

25  be returned within 60 days after rejection, withdrawal, or

26  closing. The good faith estimate must identify the recipient

27  of all payments charged the borrower and, except for all fees

28  to be received by the mortgage brokerage business, may be

29  disclosed in generic terms, such as, but not limited to, paid

30  to lender, appraiser, officials, title company, or any other

31  third-party service provider. This requirement does not


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 1  supplant or is not a substitute for the written mortgage

 2  brokerage agreement described in subsection (1).

 3         (3)  The disclosures required by this subsection must

 4  be furnished in writing at the time an adjustable rate

 5  mortgage loan is offered to the borrower and whenever the

 6  terms of the adjustable rate mortgage loan offered materially

 7  change prior to closing. The broker shall furnish the

 8  disclosures relating to adjustable rate mortgages in a format

 9  prescribed by ss. 226.18 and 226.19 of Regulation Z of the

10  Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, as amended,

11  its commentary, as amended, and the federal Truth in Lending

12  Act, 15 U.S.C. ss. 1601 et seq., as amended, together with the

13  Consumer Handbook on Adjustable Rate Mortgages, as amended,

14  published by the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Home

15  Loan Bank Board. The licensee bears the burden of proving such

16  disclosures were provided to the borrower.

17         (4)(3)  If the mortgage brokerage agreement includes a

18  nonrefundable application fee, the following requirements are

19  applicable:

20         (a)  The amount of the application fee, which must be

21  clearly denominated as such, shall be clearly disclosed.

22         (b)  The specific services that will be performed in

23  consideration for the application fee shall be disclosed.

24         (c)  The application fee must be reasonably related to

25  the services to be performed and may not be based upon a

26  percentage of the principal amount of the loan or the amount

27  financed.

28         (5)(4)  A mortgage brokerage business may not accept

29  any fee in connection with a mortgage loan other than an

30  application fee, credit report fee, property appraisal fee, or

31  


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 1  other third-party fee prior to obtaining a written commitment

 2  from a qualified lender.

 3         (6)(5)  Any third-party fee entrusted to a mortgage

 4  brokerage business shall immediately, upon receipt, be placed

 5  into a segregated account with a financial institution located

 6  in the state the accounts of which are insured by the Federal

 7  Government. Such funds shall be held in trust for the payor

 8  and shall be kept in the account until disbursement. Such

 9  funds may be placed in one account if adequate accounting

10  measures are taken to identify the source of the funds.

11         (7)(6)  All mortgage brokerage fees shall be paid to a

12  mortgage brokerage business licensee.

13         (8)(7)  This section does not prohibit a mortgage

14  brokerage business from offering products and services, in

15  addition to those offered in conjunction with the loan

16  origination process, for a fee or commission.

17         Section 7.  Subsection (8) is added to section 494.004,

18  Florida Statutes, to read:

19         494.004  Requirements of licensees.--

20         (8)(a)  In every mortgage loan transaction, each

21  licensee under ss. 494.003-494.0043 shall notify a borrower of

22  any material changes in the terms of a mortgage loan

23  previously offered to the borrower within 3 business days

24  after being made aware of such changes by the lender but not

25  less than 3 business days before the signing of the settlement

26  or closing statement. The licensee bears the burden of proving

27  such notification was provided and accepted by the borrower.

28         (b)  A borrower may waive the right to receive notice

29  of a material change that is granted under paragraph (a) if

30  the borrower determines that the extension of credit is needed

31  to meet a bona fide personal financial emergency and the right


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 1  to receive notice would delay the closing of the mortgage

 2  loan. The imminent sale of the borrower's home at foreclosure

 3  during the 3-day period before the signing of settlement or

 4  closing statement constitutes an example of a bona fide

 5  personal financial emergency. In order to waive the borrower's

 6  right to receive notice not less than 3 business days before

 7  the signing of the settlement or closing statement of any such

 8  material change, the borrower must provide the licensee with a

 9  dated written statement that describes the personal financial

10  emergency, waives the right to receive the notice, bears the

11  borrower's signature, and is not on a printed form prepared by

12  the licensee for the purpose of such a waiver.

13         Section 8.  Paragraph (v) is added to subsection (2) of

14  section 494.0041, Florida Statutes, to read:

15         494.0041  Administrative penalties and fines; license

16  violations.--

17         (2)  Each of the following acts constitutes a ground

18  for which the disciplinary actions specified in subsection (1)

19  may be taken:

20         (v)  In any mortgage transaction, violating any

21  provision of the federal Real Estate Settlement Procedure Act,

22  as amended, 12 U.S.C. ss. 2601 et seq., the federal Truth In

23  Lending Act, as amended, 15 U.S.C. ss. 1601 et seq., or any

24  regulations adopted under such acts.

25         Section 9.  Subsection (1) of section 494.0064, Florida

26  Statutes, is amended to read:

27         494.0064  Renewal of mortgage lender's license; branch

28  office license renewal.--

29         (1)(a)  The office shall renew a mortgage lender

30  license upon receipt of a completed renewal form,

31  certification from the licensee that the licensee currently


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 1  meets the minimum net worth requirements of s. 494.0061 or s.

 2  494.0065, certification from the licensee that during the

 3  preceding 2 years the licensee's principal representative and

 4  loan originators have completed the professional continuing

 5  education requirements of s. 494.00295, and the nonrefundable

 6  renewal fee of $575. The office shall renew a correspondent

 7  lender license upon receipt of a completed renewal form,

 8  certification from the licensee that the licensee currently

 9  meets the minimum net worth requirements of s. 494.0062,

10  certification from the licensee that during the preceding 2

11  years the licensee's principal representative and loan

12  originators have completed the professional continuing

13  education requirements of s. 494.00295, and a nonrefundable

14  renewal fee of $475. Each licensee shall pay at the time of

15  renewal a nonrefundable fee of $325 for the renewal of each

16  branch office license.

17         (b)  A licensee shall also submit, as part of the

18  renewal form, certification that during the preceding 2 years

19  the licensee's principal representative and loan originators

20  have completed the professional continuing education

21  requirements of s. 494.00295.

22         Section 10.  Subsection (8) and paragraph (a) of

23  subsection (10) of section 494.0067, Florida Statutes, are

24  amended, and subsections (11) and (12) are added to that

25  section, to read:

26         494.0067  Requirements of licensees under ss.

27  494.006-494.0077.--

28         (8)  Each licensee under ss. 494.006-494.0077 shall

29  provide an applicant for a mortgage loan a good faith estimate

30  of the costs the applicant can reasonably expect to pay in

31  obtaining a mortgage loan. The good faith estimate of costs


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 1  shall be mailed or delivered to the applicant within a

 2  reasonable time after the licensee receives a written loan

 3  application from the applicant. The estimate of costs may be

 4  provided to the applicant by a person other than the licensee

 5  making the loan. The good faith estimate must identify the

 6  recipient of all payments charged to the borrower and, except

 7  for all fees to be received by the mortgage brokerage business

 8  and the mortgage lender or correspondent mortgage lender, may

 9  be disclosed in generic terms, such as, but not limited to,

10  paid to appraiser, officials, title company, or any other

11  third-party service provider. The licensee bears the burden of

12  proving such disclosures were provided to the borrower. The

13  commission may adopt rules that set forth the disclosure

14  requirements of this section.

15         (10)(a)  Each mortgage lender or correspondent mortgage

16  lender licensee shall require the principal representative and

17  all loan originators, not currently licensed as mortgage

18  brokers pursuant to s. 494.0033, who perform services for the

19  licensee to complete 14 hours of professional continuing

20  education during each biennial license period. The education

21  shall cover primary and subordinate mortgage financing

22  transactions and the provisions of this chapter and the rules

23  adopted under this chapter.

24         (11)  The disclosures in this subsection must be

25  furnished in writing at the time an adjustable rate mortgage

26  loan is offered to the borrower and whenever the terms of the

27  adjustable rate mortgage loan offered have a material change

28  prior to closing. The lender shall furnish the disclosures

29  relating to adjustable rate mortgages in a format prescribed

30  by ss. 226.18 and 226.19 of Regulation Z of the Board of

31  Governors of the Federal Reserve System, as amended, its


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 1  commentary, as amended, and the federal Truth in Lending Act,

 2  15 U.S.C. ss. 1601 et seq., as amended, together with the

 3  Consumer Handbook on Adjustable Rate Mortgages, as amended,

 4  published by the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Home

 5  Loan Bank Board. The licensee bears the burden of proving such

 6  disclosures were provided to the borrower.

 7         (12)(a)  In every mortgage loan transaction, each

 8  licensee under ss. 494.006-494.0077 shall notify a borrower of

 9  any material changes in the terms of a mortgage loan

10  previously offered to the borrower within 3 business days

11  after being made aware of such changes by the lender but not

12  less than 3 business days before the signing of the settlement

13  or closing statement. The licensee bears the burden of proving

14  such notification was provided and accepted by the borrower.

15         (b)  A borrower may waive the right to receive notice

16  of a material change that is granted under paragraph (a) if

17  the borrower determines that the extension of credit is needed

18  to meet a bona fide personal financial emergency and the right

19  to receive notice would delay the closing of the mortgage

20  loan. The imminent sale of the borrower's home at foreclosure

21  during the 3-day period before the signing of settlement or

22  closing statement constitutes an example of a bona fide

23  personal financial emergency. In order to waive the borrower's

24  right to receive notice not less than 3 business days before

25  the signing of the settlement or closing statement of any such

26  material change, the borrower must provide the licensee with a

27  dated written statement that describes the personal financial

28  emergency, waives the right to receive the notice, bears the

29  borrower's signature, and is not on a printed form prepared by

30  the licensee for the purpose of such a waiver.

31  


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 1         Section 11.  Paragraph (v) is added to subsection (2)

 2  of section 494.0072, Florida Statutes, subsection (3) of that

 3  section is amended, and subsection (5) is added to that

 4  section, to read:

 5         494.0072  Administrative penalties and fines; license

 6  violations.--

 7         (2)  Each of the following acts constitutes a ground

 8  for which the disciplinary actions specified in subsection (1)

 9  may be taken:

10         (v)  In any mortgage transaction, violating any

11  provision of the federal Real Estate Settlement Procedure Act,

12  as amended, 12 U.S.C. ss. 2601 et seq., the federal Truth In

13  Lending Act, as amended, 15 U.S.C. ss. 1601 et seq., or any

14  regulations adopted under such acts.

15         (3)  A mortgage lender or correspondent mortgage lender

16  is subject to the disciplinary actions specified in subsection

17  (1) if any officer, member, director, control person, joint

18  venturer, or ultimate equitable owner of a 10-percent or

19  greater interest in the mortgage lender or correspondent

20  mortgage lender, associate, or employee of the mortgage lender

21  or correspondent mortgage lender violates or has violated any

22  provision of subsection (2).

23         (5)  A principal representative of a mortgage lender or

24  correspondent mortgage lender is subject to the disciplinary

25  actions specified in subsection (1) for violations of

26  subsection (2) by associates or employees in the course of an

27  association or employment with the correspondent mortgage

28  lender or the mortgage lender. The principal representative is

29  only subject to suspension or revocation for associate or

30  employee actions if there is a pattern of repeated violations

31  


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 1  by associates or employees or if the principal broker or

 2  principal representative had knowledge of the violations.

 3         Section 12.  Section 494.0073, Florida Statutes, is

 4  amended to read:

 5         494.0073  Mortgage lender or correspondent mortgage

 6  lender when acting as a mortgage brokerage business.--Sections

 7  494.006-494.0077 do not prohibit a mortgage lender or

 8  correspondent mortgage lender from acting as a mortgage

 9  brokerage business. However, in mortgage transactions in which

10  a mortgage lender or correspondent mortgage lender acts as a

11  mortgage brokerage business, the provisions of ss. 494.0038,

12  494.0042, 494.004(8), and 494.0043(1), (2), and (3) apply.

13         Section 13.  Section 817.545, Florida Statutes, is

14  created to read:

15         817.545  Mortgage fraud.--

16         (1)  For the purposes of the section, the term

17  "mortgage lending process" means the process through which a

18  person seeks or obtains a residential mortgage loan,

19  including, but not limited to, the solicitation, application

20  or origination, negotiation of terms, third-party provider

21  services, underwriting, signing and closing, and funding of

22  the loan. Documents involved in the mortgage lending process

23  include, but are not limited to, mortgages, deeds, surveys,

24  inspection reports, uniform residential loan applications, or

25  other loan applications; appraisal reports; HUD-1 settlement

26  statements; supporting personal documentation for loan

27  applications such as W-2 forms, verifications of income and

28  employment, credit reports, bank statements, tax returns, and

29  payroll stubs; and any required disclosures.

30         (2)  A person commits the offense of mortgage fraud if,

31  with the intent to defraud, the person knowingly:


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 1         (a)  Makes any material misstatement,

 2  misrepresentation, or omission during the mortgage lending

 3  process with the intention that the misstatement,

 4  misrepresentation, or omission will be relied on by a mortgage

 5  lender, borrower, or any other person or entity involved in

 6  the mortgage lending process; however, omissions on a loan

 7  application regarding employment, income, or assets for a loan

 8  which does not require this information are not considered a

 9  material omission for purposes of this subsection.

10         (b)  Uses or facilitates the use of any material

11  misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission during the

12  mortgage lending process with the intention that the material

13  misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission will be relied on

14  by a mortgage lender, borrower, or any other person or entity

15  involved in the mortgage lending process; however, omissions

16  on a loan application regarding employment, income, or assets

17  for a loan which does not require this information are not

18  considered a material omission for purposes of this

19  subsection.

20         (c)  Receives any proceeds or any other funds in

21  connection with the mortgage lending process that the person

22  knew resulted from a violation of paragraph (a) or paragraph

23  (b).

24         (d)  Files or causes to be filed with the clerk of the

25  circuit court for any county of this state a document involved

26  in the mortgage lending process which contains a material

27  misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission.

28         (3)  An offense of mortgage fraud may not be predicated

29  solely upon information lawfully disclosed under federal

30  disclosure laws, regulations, or interpretations related to

31  the mortgage lending process.


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 1         (4)  For the purpose of venue under this section, any

 2  violation of this section is considered to have been

 3  committed:

 4         (a)  In the county in which the real property is

 5  located; or

 6         (b)  In any county in which a material act was

 7  performed in furtherance of the violation.

 8         (5)  Any person who violates subsection (2) commits a

 9  felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s.

10  775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

11         Section 14.  This act shall take effect October 1,

12  2007.

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