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Source of Title Blog : Ohio Legislation

Ohio's H.B. 201 Gets My Vote for Worst Bill of the Year
by Robert Franco | 2014/05/06

Yes, I know it is only May.  There is still a lot of time for our legislature to really do something stupid (and I'm sure they will), but I'm pretty confident that H.B. 201 will take the award for Worst Bill of the Year for 2014.  It seeks to greatly expand and codify equitable subrogation, which I have blogged about before. In 2010, I opined that Equitable Subrogation was an Over-used Remedy for Negligence and I applauded an Ohio Supreme Court decision that limited its applicability.  I was particularly pleased with the Court because more than a year earlier I questioned the lower court decision that applied equitable subrogation to bail out the negligent lender. 

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Categories: Abstractors, Huh?, Land Title Associations, Ohio Legislation, Small Agents, Title Industry

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Is a Conveyance Fee Due on the Conveyance of an Easement in Ohio?
by Robert Franco | 2013/05/24

When a deed is recorded in Ohio, the Auditor's office normally charges a conveyance fee of $4.00 per thousand of the value of the property conveyed.  I was recently told that at least one Ohio County has been charging the conveyance fee at the time easements are recorded.  This has not been the normal practice, to the best of my knowledge, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it is not proper.  So, is the conveyance of an easement subject to the conveyance fee?

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Categories: Abstractors, Ohio Legislation, Public Officials, Title Industry

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We Need New Policies or Laws for Computer Indexing
by Robert Franco | 2012/08/14

I had the pleasure of attending the Ohio Association of Independent Title Agent's conference yesterday.  The OAITA is a great organization and they provided some excellent discussion at this year's conference.  One particular speaker gave me an opportunity to ask a question that has been on my mind for quite some time; the speaker was Rick Campbell, President of the Ohio Recorders Association and Stark County Recorder.  I asked him if there was a state-wide policy of noting in the index when corrections were made.

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Categories: Abstractors, Ohio Legislation, Opportunities, Public Officials, Public Records

Source of Title Blog :: 1 comments ::

Can A Trust Hold Title In Ohio?
by Robert Franco | 2012/02/23

Generally speaking, a trust is not a legal entity and it may not hold title to real property, with a couple of exceptions for specific types of trusts.  Rather, it is the trustee who holds title for the benefit of the beneficiaries of the trust.  For example, the proper grantee on a deed funding a trust with real property is "Jon Smith, Trustee of The Jon Smith Trust."  A deed to "The Jon Smith Trust" is a void ab initio because the trust is a non-entity.  Unfortunately, there are many deeds of record purporting to convey the property to the trust, with no mention of the trustee.  Ohio has recently passed a bill that will allow for such defects to be cured.  

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Categories: Abstractors, Ohio Legislation, Title Problems

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Are Abstractors in Ohio Required to Carry E&O Insurance?
by Robert Franco | 2011/10/18

I received a call this morning from a client asking for our E&O declarations page.  She explained to me that they are renewing their coverage and their insurer was requiring proof of our coverage.  But it is really more than that - Ohio law requires "subcontractors to maintain an errors and omissions policy."  This brings up an interesting question, however.  Because, like many states, Ohio does not require abstractors to be licensed, who is in charge of enforcing this law and how can it be done?

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Categories: Abstractors, E&O Insurance, Ohio Legislation

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Acknowledgments in Ohio
by Robert Franco | 2011/10/14

In late 2001 the Ohio legislature passed a bill which included statutory forms of conveyance that contained a new acknowledgment clause.  Within a few months, prior to the effective date of the former bill, it introduced and passed a new bill making further changes.  There was some language related to the acknowledgments that was proposed, but never passed, that made its way in to subsequently recorded deeds.  Some seem to question the validity of these acknowledgments.  Whether they are valid or not depends on the precise language used, but they may be perfectly fine.

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Categories: Abstractors, Attorneys, Notaries Public, Ohio Legislation, Title Problems

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A Little Known Fact About Dower In Ohio
by Robert Franco | 2011/02/17

This may be of little interest to most of you.  Dower is only recognized by about half a dozen states; Ohio is one of them.  To briefly explain the concept of dower, it is a one-third life estate interest that a spouse has in the real property of the other.  It is for this very important reason that all conveyances of interests in real property include the marital status of the grantor, along with a release of dower by the spouse if the grantor is married.  This is so even if the property is only in the name of the grantor.

There are usually only two ways to extinguish dower, aside from the spouse signing away dower rights by joining in the execution of the grant document by the title-holding spouse.  Those would be divorce and death.  However, there is another little known statute that can extinguish dower - I'm blogging about this today because I have never seen it used and until very recently, I was unaware of it.  By statute in Ohio, adultery can be a bar to dower.

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Categories: Ohio Legislation, Title Industry, Title Problems

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Ohio Senate Votes Unanimously to Ban Private Transfer Fee Covenants
by Robert Franco | 2010/05/28

The Ohio Senate, after 6 hearings in the Senate Judiciary - Civil Justice Committee, voted on HB 292 in favor of a complete ban on private transfer fee covenants.  The bill was widely supported by several Ohio organizations, including the Ohio Bar Association, the Ohio Land Title Association, the Ohio Association of Independent Title Agents, the Ohio League of Bankers, and the Ohio Realtors Association.  The only opponents of the bill were Freehold Capital Partners, the organization promoting them nationally, and the Ohio Builders Association. 

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Categories: Legislation, Ohio Legislation, Title Industry

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Freehold Capital Partners Testifies Before Ohio Senate Committee
by Robert Franco | 2010/03/06

As you know, Ohio has proposed legislation to ban private transfer fee covenants.  This past week, a Senate committee held a second hearing on the bill and I was able to make it to the Statehouse to attend.  In favor of the bill was the Ohio State Bar Association and the Ohio Land Title Association.  In opposition, a representative from Freehold Capital Partners.  The interesting thing was that the issues addressed have all been debated here on the Source of Title Blog.  I guess you could say that we have been ahead of the curve!

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Categories: Ohio Legislation, Title Industry, Title Problems

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Confidential Information Presents Challenges for Searching Titles
by Robert Franco | 2009/12/29

Recently, I have had numerous problems searching titles because relevant information has been removed from probate files pursuant to Ohio law which makes it "confidential."  While I can certainly understand the need to protect individuals privacy, this creates a real problem for title professionals, and potentially homeowners.  If omitted confidential information could result in a lien on someone's home, there is a real hazard waiting for a title searcher.

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Categories: Abstractors, Ohio Legislation, Public Officials, Public Records, Title Problems

Source of Title Blog :: 2 comments ::

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Source of Title Blog

Robert A. FrancoThe focus of this blog will be on sharing my thoughts and concerns related to the small title agents and abstractors. The industry has changed dramatically over the past ten years and I believe that we are just seeing the beginning. As the evolution continues, what will become of the many small independent title professionals who have long been the cornerstone of the industry?

Robert A. Franco



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