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06/21/2024 08:34 PM
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=H&SPick=20230&cosponId=40154
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House Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: March 13, 2023 11:57 AM
From: Representative Joe Ciresi
To: All House members
Subject: Predictable Recorder of Deed Fees
 
In the near future I will be re-introducing legislation that will make predictable the cost of recording documents charged by Recorders of Deeds located in counties of the Second A, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth classes. This legislation would be similar to laws passed in 19 other states and recognizes the need to reduce uncertainty and delay in the recording process.

The current unpredictable method for calculating the cost of recording is dependent on page count, number of names, number of parcels, and number of marginal document references. This means that the addition or removal of a page, or a miscalculation, can lead to the incorrect amount being included for a filing and subsequent rejection, causing uncertainty, delays, and potential harm to stakeholders. This method is now incompatible with a legal rule issued by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which regulates residential mortgage transactions. The rule mandates that recording costs be accurately disclosed in advance of settlement and, most importantly, before the document to be recorded is in final form.

In 2016, the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee (LBFC) conducted a review of the fees collected by Recorders of Deeds. Its findings included (1) “Fees charged by County Recorders of Deeds are difficult to predict because they can vary based on factors such as the number of pages and the number of names that need to be indexed” and (2) “Many states are moving toward predictable recording fees to avoid delays and penalties at settlement.”

I hope you will join me in co-sponsoring this common sense legislation to simplify the recordation process, eliminate the potential for user error, and guarantee predictability for fees, which will benefit consumers, lenders, businesses, attorneys, and others who record documents in the Commonwealth.

Prior Co-Sponsors (HB 1989): POLINCHOCK, BRIGGS, BROOKS, BURGOS, CIRESI, T. DAVIS, NEILSON, SCHMITT, TOMLINSON, WARREN, O'MARA and HENNESSEY



Introduced as HB1244