I wrote an article on this same topic some time ago, but a client has received new, slightly different letters recently, so I am writing it again. Some of the names and descriptions have changed, but the concept is the same.
We transferred a client’s two properties into trust, and he received two separate letters, one from“Property Transfer Services” and the other from “Local Records Office.” Ignore the names of the senders, because the letter from a few years ago had a completely different name.
The letters recite data regarding property that the owner owns. They contain two pages of ridiculous and official-sounding description to explain why everyone should have a copy of the deed to their property. Both notices offer to provide a copy of the deed for in excess of $80. The letters contain disclaimers, which are as misleading as the rest of the letters, to indicate that they are not affiliated with any government agency.
This “service” is unnecessary, for a variety of reasons.
1. If a deed is recorded in the public records, it is unlikely you will need to present a certified or official copy for any purpose.
2. If the deed was recorded after the public records of the county were posted on the Internet(which is probably some time after 1970), one can obtain a regular copy, or even a certified copy, from the Clerk of Court for much less money. Clerk records are available in every county. In Volusia County, go to www.clerk.org and search public records.
3. The tax assessor’s information generally shows the book and page of the deed, if you have trouble finding it on the clerk’s website.
All these companies do is obtain the copy from the clerk, which anybody could obtain directly.There is no need to heed the offer contained in this letter.