Norfolk County Register of Deeds William P. O’Donnell today reminded residents that over 750 homeowners have signed up for the free on-line Consumer Notification Service offered by the Registry to protect Norfolk County property owners against fraud.
“The Federal Bureau of Investigation, (F.B.I.) continues to assign resources to combat property and mortgage fraud. Multiple jurisdictions across the country have reported individuals recording fraudulent documents and making it appear like they own another person’s home or property. While we have been fortunate that this problem has not revealed itself here in Norfolk County, I want to make sure my office is proactively and vigorously protecting consumers,” noted Register O’Donnell.
Any owner of real property in the twenty-eight communities comprising Norfolk County can sign-up for the Consumer Notification Service free of charge by doing the following: Go to the Registry’s website, www.norfolkdeeds.org, and click on the Consumer Notification Service Get Consumer “Alerts” button to complete the initial registration. From there, follow the remaining sign-up instructions.
Once you have 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 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. O’Donnell stated, “This is an easy process to sign-up for and will only take a few minutes of your time. This program will not prevent the fraud but it will allow residents to find out about it in order to address the fraud quickly.”
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 on-line land research records at www.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.
Register O’Donnell concluded, “The core mission of the Registry of Deeds is to record land documents in a secure, accurate and accessible manner. As your Register, I also want to be proactive in minimizing the potential for fraudulent activity related to land document recordings. The Consumer Notification Service provides a level of protection to the program’s subscribers against unscrupulous individuals who would attempt to commit real estate fraud. I urge people to sign up for this program.”
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The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds is located at 649 High Street in 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 www.norfolkdeeds.org. Residents in need of assistance can contact the Registry of Deeds Customer Service Center via telephone at (781) 461-6101, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.