MReport November 2017

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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26 | TH E M R EP O RT F ive years ago, the mort- gage industry was under siege. Foreclosures were up, home prices were down, overseeing of default practices were under scrutiny, and regulatory enforcement and the associated rules were signifi- cantly up—as were fines. It was at this time that MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. (MERSCORP) made critical changes—ushering in a new era for the company, one that is built on learning from the challenges of the past and forging a new way forward. These changes touched every aspect of the Company, including an enhanced focus on data accuracy and transpar - ency, aggressive litigation defense, improved communications with Members and a strengthened senior team and Board. MERSCORP is the owner and operator of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS). MERS acts as the mortgagee on behalf of lenders and assigns on approximately 75% of all residen - tial mortgages. MERSCORP operates the MERS® System, an electronic database that tracks the changes in mortgage servicing rights and beneficial ownership for these mortgage loans. But the Company has had its fair share of critics—bringing a tangible threat in the form of potential financial damages and litigation costs, but more concerning, requested rem - edies that could have eliminated the value of MERS as a whole. Perhaps the most significant of the challenges MERS faced at the time was proving the valida- tion of their legal underpinning through the courts and working through all the enhancements and gaps within their system with members, regulators, and state Attorney Generals, plus ensuring their data was accurate, secure, and working as intended. "With litigation challenges rising, heightened regulatory over- sight, and a damaged reputation, it was a difficult environment. We had to quickly strengthen the Company internally while overcoming numerous external threats," Bill Beckmann, President The Rise of MERS Forging Ahead Through Forward-Thinking FEATURE By Brianna Gilpin Having navigated the legal system, a majority investment, and making it through the 2008 foreclosure crisis, the executives at MERSCORP are experienced, ahead of the game, and ready to share their knowledge.

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