The Nationwide Multistate Licensing System and Registry (NMLS) is an important resource for the mortgage industry. NMLS was created by the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) and the American Association of Residential Mortgage Regulators (AARMR) to apply the benefits of local, state-based financial services regulation on a national level. NMLS serves as a “system of record for non-depository, financial services licensing or registration in participating state agencies.” NMLS improves coordination and information sharing among regulators, increases efficiencies for industry, and enhances consumer protection. [1. http://mortgage.nationwidelicensingsystem.org/about/Pages/default.aspx]
Electronic Surety Bond Tracking through NMLS
NMLS recently introduced the first phase of Electronic Surety Bond Tracking. This service allows NMLS to update surety bond requirements and maintain surety bond information validated by insurance companies and bond providers. Since NMLS aims to be a single, comprehensive system of record for licensing-related information, being able to provide credible and up-to-date information is an important function.
The electronic tracking will also prevent processing delays in license applications, amendment filings, and renewal approvals. Prior to the electronic tracking system, NMLS was limited by the arduous process of uploading hard copy surety bond documents. [2. http://mortgage.nationwidelicensingsystem.org/news/ProposalsForComment/Proposal%202014-3.pdf]
NMLS began the first phase of implementation for Electronic Surety Bond Tracking on January 25th. In this first phase, surety companies and surety bond producers were asked to create accounts and establish associations. [3. http://mortgage.nationwidelicensingsystem.org/Pages/esbt.aspx] In the second phase, which begins in July 2016, SRR will implement bond issuance, tracking, and maintenance. The Electronic Surety Bond Tracking is implemented by the State Regulatory Registry LLC (SRR), the owner and operator of NMLS.
Other NMLS Services:
NMLS Consumer Access
NMLS also has a separate, fully searchable website, www.NMLSConsumerAccess.org, containing administrative and licensing information for companies, branches, and individuals that are licensed or registered through NMLS. The site allows consumers to confirm that a financial-services company or professional is authorized to conduct business in their state.
A State-by-State Database on Licensing Requirements
NMLS offers an easy way to view licensing requirements by state. Users can simply select the desired state from a drop-down menu to view licensing requirements for various company, branch, and individual licenses. [4. http://mortgage.nationwidelicensingsystem.org/slr/Pages/default.aspx] NMLS provides application, amendment, and surrender requirement checklists for each license type.
Resources to Maintain Professional Standards
State-licensed Mortgage Loan Originators are legally required to pass a written qualified test, to complete certain pre-licensure education courses, and to take annual continuing education courses. [5. http://mortgage.nationwidelicensingsystem.org/profreq/pages/profreqbackground.aspx] NMLS provides ample information on all three requirements including helpful resources to prepare for the written qualified test, and a list of approved providers for pre-licensure and continuing education courses.
Another beneficial service NMLS provides is a series of “Quick Guides” for both individuals and companies. The guides cover a wide range of topics from specific tasks of account administration to answering various questions regarding form filing, and many topics in between.
NMLS offers many valuable resources and services vital to the mortgage industry.