Union Bank of California (San Francisco, $42.5 billion in assets) recently selected Web Posting Service (WPS) from eLynx (Cincinnati) to transmit secure information, such as trust documents and tax returns, to escrow companies.
Union Bank, with mortgage volumes of about $5 billion last year, went live with eLynx in January. The bank also uses scanning software from Adobe Systems (San Jose, Calif.).
The bank has improved the process of sending documents to escrow companies in a secure way, while further enhancing the mortgage closing process, explains Union Bank vice president Ken Palla.
"We wanted the ability to take documents that are required during the closing for a first mortgage and have those documents be electronically transmitted from the bank's processing center to an escrow company," says Palla. "We now take the closing documents, such as the note deed of trust, and electronically transmit those to escrow via eLynx. We also took paper documents that we needed to get to escrow, scanned those and created a file."
Prior to implementing eLynx, First Union had printed important documents and sent them to escrow companies via express mail.
But the delays in the previous closing process proved time-consuming. "That means whatever I do today, escrow doesn't get until tomorrow," explains Palla. "That is a built-in, minimum, one-day lag for anything that we get in to escrow."
Customer service had also suffered from the frequent delays. "When the documents get to escrow, if there is a problem with a document, such as any minor misspellings in the borrower's name or names, those documents cannot be signed," according to Palla. "The escrow company would have to go back to the processor and the processor would have to re-FedEx documents to be signed."
Palla says the eLynx solution has cut the time to correct errors to the point that customers who are in escrow no longer have to wait for long periods of time for the documents to be re-submitted. "In this type of process, the escrow company, were that error to occur, would simply notify the mortgage processor via telephone," says Palla. "Within 10 minutes, the corrected documents could be securely re-transmitted to escrow for the borrower's signature, while they are having a cup of coffee."
"This way processors are quickly able to rectify the mistake," he adds.
The solution has also benefited Union Bank by increasing customer referrals because of the improved customer service. WPS also has been used in other areas of the mortgage process, according to Palla. "We wanted to securely move documents from our banks to an escrow company," he says. "We were just thinking about the deed of trust in the beginning. After we began this we had other paper documents, as well. We added that to the project, and were able to do it because of the support that Adobe Systems provided, as well as that from eLynx."
Union Bank intends to use the WPS product in other areas, such as electronic signatures at the closing. "I can see us using this technology for other, non-mortgage solutions within the bank," Palla says. "This is not a mortgage-centric solution."
INSTITUTION: Union Bank of California (San Francisco).
ASSETS: $42.5 billion.
BUSINESS CHALLENGE: Enable secure, rapid delivery of mortgage documents to escrow companies.
SOLUTION: eLynx's Web Posting Service (WPS) for managing data/documents; Adobe Systems Capture 3.0.