Licensed vs. Unlicensed “Controlled”
All Escrow companies in California can be classified into two basic categories: Licensed or Controlled. “Licensed” Escrow companies are independent businesses licensed by the California Department of Business Oversight. This license regulates the procedures and practices of the companies and subjects them to stringent requirements designed to protect consumers.
“Controlled” Escrow companies are non-licensed businesses that can be owned by a variety of entities, including Real Estate Brokers, Mortgage Brokers, Banks, Savings and Loans, and Title Insurance Companies. Such companies fall under the jurisdiction of a variety of supervising agencies, with regulations and requirements that vary widely. One fact remains constant, however. None of the agencies have regulations as strict as those imposed on the Escrow companies licensed by the Department of Business Oversight.