By Joseph M. Reynolds, Esq.
Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns has issued a directive opening the Erie County Clerk’s Office to title companies ONLY starting this coming Monday, June 15, 2020. Chicago Title has confirmed that it will have an employee at the Clerk’s Office; this employee will not be allowed to record documents for third parties, but will be there strictly for search work.
For practitioners, this means that their documents to be recorded with the Erie County Clerk will still need to be mailed in/sent overnight directly to the Clerk’s Office. This also means that, at least from Chicago Title, you will again be able to order 1920 searches which have otherwise not been available since the shutdown. During the shutdown, the title companies were limited to what was indexed on-line unless the company in question had a copy of the foretitle in their “plant” (to use the Chicago Title term).
One would expect the other title companies to follow suit and have an employee present at the Clerk’s Office to follow Chicago’s initiative. Hurwitz & Fine will continue to keep watch on any further changes to the Clerk’s directives concerning the re-opening of the Erie County Clerk’s Office.