| Wicked Local
Register of Deeds William P. O’Donnell reminded Norfolk County homeowners of a free online Consumer Notification Service offered by the Registry of Deeds to protect county property owners against fraud.
“The Federal Bureau of Investigation continues to assign resources to combat property, deed and mortgage fraud,” said O’Donnell. “Many jurisdictions across the country have reported unscrupulous individuals recording fraudulent land documents making it appear they own another person’s home or property. Fortunately, we have not seen this type of crime take place in Norfolk County. My intent here is not to upset county property owners but to make sure my office is out front helping consumers protect their home.”
Any owner of real property in the 28 communities comprising Norfolk County can join the approximately 1,300 homeowners already utilizing the service by signing up for the Consumer Notification Service free of charge by visiting https://norfolkdeeds.org and clicking on the Consumer Notification Service Get Consumer “Alerts” button to complete the initial registration.
Once signed up for the service, each subscriber will be able to input two names, individual or business, and the corresponding city or town in Norfolk County for monitoring. They can monitor their real estate records for such activities as changes in deeds, mortgages, mortgage discharges, non-mortgage liens, homesteads or other land documents that might be recorded against the property.
“The process to sign up for the service is user friendly and will only take a few minutes of your time,” said O’Donnell. “While the program will not prevent the fraud, it will allow residents to find out about it in a more timely manner.”
If a document is recorded against one of the names inputted for monitoring, the subscriber will be alerted via email, usually within 24 hours. The person can check the registry’s online land research records at https://norfolkresearch.org as an option. If a subscriber believes a fraudulent land record has been recorded against their property, they should then immediately contact the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds customer service center at 781-461-6101. After talking with a registry employee, the subscriber will be given a list of public safety referrals by the registry.
“While we live in extraordinary times, the core mission here at the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds remains the same: make sure the recording of land documents is accomplished in a secure, accurate and accessible manner,” said O’Donnell. “I also want to make sure my office is taking any and all steps to minimize the effects of fraudulent activity related to land document recordings. The Registry’s Consumer Notification Service provides a level of protection to the program’s subscribers against dishonest individuals who commit real estate or land document fraud. After all, the biggest asset most of us have is our home. I urge people to sign up for this free program.”
To learn more about these and other Registry of Deeds events and initiatives, visit facebook/com/NorfolkDeeds or follow us on twitter.com/NorfolkDeeds and Instagram.com/NorfolkDeeds.
The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds is located at 649 High St., Dedham. The registry is a resource for homeowners, title examiners, mortgage lenders, municipalities and others with a need for secure, accurate, accessible land record information.
All land record research information can be found on the registry’s website https://norfolkdeeds.org. Residents in need of assistance can contact the Registry of Deeds Customer Service Center at 781-461-6101, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.