County Clerk Warns of Deed Copy Scam
Cattaraugus County Clerk James K. Griffith is urging all county residents to be very aware of a company called "New York Retrieval Inc". This company is sending letters to property owners in the county offering to secure a certified copy of the deed for their property for a fee of nearly $60.00.
"My office has received a number of calls from local residents over the past few days regarding these mailings and I urge residents NOT to respond. Certified copies of any deed can be easily obtained directly from the County Clerk's Office in Little Valley for a fee of $5.00 and the $59.50 fee required by the company is nothing more than a scam", Griffith reported.
Although what the company is doing is technically legal, paying them ten times the amount the County Clerk's Office charges is highly questionable, Griffith advised. "If you read these notices carefully, you will see that the company even admits that certain copies of these deeds are available at the County Clerk's Offices at a much reduced price. But I am concerned that people may not read this fine print. Also of concern to me is the company is soliciting credit card information for payment, something I just cannot recommend".
"The purpose of recording legal documents such as deeds is to make sure that there is always a record kept in a safe and secure manner. All of our land recordds recorded in the County Clerk's Office are backed up by a microfilm copy, with an additional secured copy stored in an archival vault off premises. Certified copies of any recorded document, including deeds, are made in just a matter of minutes by the County Clerk Recording Office staff.", Griffith concluded.
Anyone wishing to obtain a copy of his or her deed may do so by contacting the County Clerk's Office at 716-938-2297.