The IRS Did It, So What’s Wrong With FHA?

*The IRS Did It, So What Wrong With FHA?*
**By Tony Garritano**

***For those who have not heard, National Credit-reporting System, Inc. (NCS), a full-service consumer reporting agency specializing in income, identity and credit intelligence, announced the expected commitment of the IRS accepting e-Signatures on the form 4506-T when requesting IRS tax transcripts for income verification, starting in January 2013. This is a big moment. This was the last disclosure that couldn’t be e-signed. So, now that the IRS has come around to e-signing one has to wonder: What’s taking FHA so long?

****The electronic execution of signatures will improve efficiencies for multiple industries, including mortgage finance, credit card and insurance. This will help to lower origination costs and speed loan closings for lenders.

****According to an IRS communication this week to participants in its income verification express service (IVES), beginning January 2013, the IRS will give taxpayers the ability to execute a 4506-T request for tax return transcripts using e-signature technology. NCS executives, led by senior vice president Cecil Bowman, have presided over direct NCS and multiple financial industry discussions with the IRS to champion electronic signature of 4506-T requests. Bowman, a 35-year veteran of the IRS, is chair of the Mortgage Banker Association’s Form 4506-T Workgroup and also directs NCS’ advocacy efforts with governmental agencies.

****Consumer satisfaction is expected to rise as the 4506-T may now be bundled with disclosures eligible for execution using electronic signatures. For conforming mortgages prior to this week’s announcement, the 4506-T was the final form in the initial set of consumer disclosures not eligible for electronic signature.
“This is most welcome news and builds on technology the IRS has deployed, such as the IVES program,” said Bob Knuth, president and CEO of NCS. “We can begin to offer e-Signature options to our clients, through NCS or an e-Signature provider already in use.”

****Hopefully this will be the push that FHA needs to make a similar move next year. We’ll see.

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