In the definitions section of the Title Insurance Rating Bureau of PA (TIRBOP) Manual of Rules and Rates, an Approved Attorney is defined as:

An attorney admitted to practice in Pennsylvania who because of experience and knowledge of real estate law in Pennsylvania is approved by an Insurer and upon whose examination of title and report the Insurer or Agent may issue a policy of title insurance. Such Approved Attorney must take financial responsibility for the search, examination, closing, and the final certification of title to the Insurer or Agent in a real estate transaction. Such Approved Attorney may not also act as an employee of an Insurer, an Agent, or an employee or affiliate of an Agent in a transaction in which he or she acts as an Approved Attorney.

In a practical sense, the Approved Attorney performs (or obtains) a title search examines the title and makes a Preliminary Report to the title agency. The title agency then issues the commitment, binding the Insurer to the transaction. The Approved Attorney prepares the necessary documentation and conducts the closing. After recording the documents, they issue an Approved Attorney’s Final Report and the policies are then issued by the title agency.

There are a significant number of closings conducted under the supervision of an Approved Attorney as the system is widely employed throughout Pennsylvania.