TORONTO, Sept. 26, 2002 – Real estate practitioners now have the option of being able to complete another aspect of their transactions — the transfer of closing funds — electronically, from their computer desktops.
LAWPRO and BMO Bank of Montreal have announced a real time funds transfer system that lets a purchaser’s lawyer deliver closing funds for an electronic registration (e-reg) transaction to the vendor’s law firm electronically, real time, real value. The system, now available to lawyers across Ontario, was specifically designed to complement and streamline real estate transactions in the e-reg environment. It uses BMO’s Directline(R)(xx) product as its technology platform.
Directline(R) reduces the need for lawyers to physically meet each other or send closing funds by courier in escrow. Instead, the new technology solution — which is completely optional for lawyers working in the e-reg environment — ensures immediate, real value settlement of funds in real estate transactions. Using this PC-based system, lawyers can retrieve account information and perform financial transactions, including the transfer of funds from one BMO Bank of Montreal Trust Account to that of another lawyer also set up on the system, from their desktops, in real time.
An added advantage is that funds transferred through this program will be considered “cleared” funds in the selling lawyer’s trust account as soon as a transfer is received, adding an important measure of security for vendor lawyers concerned about having to determine the type of funds provided by purchasers’ lawyers in a transaction.
To access the system, which is available on an extended hours basis, six days a week, lawyers need only a user identification and password. Participating law firms must have trust accounts with BMO Bank of Montreal, and must have submitted required legal agreements to the bank before they can use Directline real time transfers for their transactions. Copies of the forms are available on the LAWPRO Web site at www.lawpro.ca.
“As e-reg expands across Ontario, and lawyers undertake conveyancing that is more distant from where they practise, the ability to undertake remote, real time electronic transfer of closing proceeds becomes more critical,” says LAWPRO Vice-President Kathleen Waters, who represented LAWPRO on the project. “This system is a much-needed companion to e-reg that further frees up the lawyer to focus on providing advice and service to clients rather than have to
wait in line at the registry office.”
Lawyers’ Professional Indemnity Company (LAWPRO) currently provides a diverse range of insurance-related programs, services, and resources, including title insurance, to support the legal community in several jurisdictions across Canada.
(R) LAWPRO and TitlePLUS are registered trademarks of Lawyers’ Professional Indemnity Company.
(R)(xx) Directline is a registered trademark of BMO Bank of Montreal.
(R) LAWPRO design is a trademark of Lawyers’ Professional Indemnity Company.
(TM)(*) e-reg is a trademark of Teranet Inc.