Register O’Donnell Reports on State of the Registry for 2015

Norfolk County Register of Deeds William P. O'Donnell stated that technology and customer service must go hand – in – hand in running an agency that houses approximately 5 million records and processes 136,000 land transactions per year as he gave an update on the State of the Registry for 2015.


"We are one of the busiest and largest registries in the Commonwealth, so we must continue to strive for ways to meet our core mission; to record land documents in a timely and accurate manner and to assure that these documents are secure and widely accessible to the public," noted the Norfolk County Register.


O'Donnell, who assumed the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds office in 2002, led the efforts to bring in a state-of-the-art computer system designed to speed up the processing of documents and eliminate backlogs. He followed up with other initiatives by quadrupling the amount of computers at the Registry for public use, creating a customer service center and offering a series of free computer seminars annually to the public and trade groups on how to access land record information.


Register O'Donnell noted, "I also realized that communication is a two-way street and it was just as important to get the information out to the public. In that regard, we developed a public outreach unit and continue to hold office hours annually in each of the 28 cities and towns in Norfolk County and with the use of our laptop we are able to access a resident's land record request. We provide similar service to both business and civic groups."


One of the biggest breakthroughs in technology was the creation of an electronic recording service, which allows commercial entities such as law firms, title examiners and banks, which primarily represent home and business owners, a more convenient and speedier way to conduct business. O'Donnell noted that on-line business has become a growing part of the Registry operation. Last year alone, Norfolk County Registry of Deeds completed more than 31,000 land transactions on-line and it resulted in the County being the second busiest registry in the state for electronic on-line recording.


"Today, the Registry holds all land documents back to 1793 on-line. Additionally, we are working in conjunction with Xerox on a major project going back from 1900 to 1793 to transcribe all handwritten documents recorded during that span of time," noted the Register.


Looking forward to 2015, Register O'Donnell concluded by saying, "We are running software designed to notify anyone if a document has been recorded against their property in Norfolk County. The Consumer Notification System is designed to ensure that documents recorded against an individual's property are legitimate and not the result of fraud. While this issue hasn't plagued our Registry yet, property and mortgage fraud are one of the fastest growing white collar crimes in the United States according to the FBI. Anyone interested in signing-up for the service can go to our website at www.norfolkdeeds.org."

The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds will be closed on Thursday, July 4th in celebration of Independence Day. We are open Friday, July 5th.

The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds is closed Today, July 4th in celebration of Independence Day. We are open Friday, July 5th.