E-recording in Cook County: Needs work

I love techno advances that save time and make life easier. I am not a fan of technology that complicates things. The Cook County Recorder’s office new e-recording system for deeds and mortgages is in the second category.

In the past, recording a deed meant driving to the recorder’s office standing in line and recording the document in person.

Many states now allow e-recording, which means you can record a document online from your computer. There is a great software program called Simplifile that helps to do this. It’s a wonder , super-easy to use and makes it really easy to record deeds online.

Cook County uses Simplifile, but Cook stacks a bunch of requirements on e-recording that make it really hard, almost impossible, to record a deed electronically. My office records a lot of deeds, mostly deeds to living trusts. These are called “exempt” deeds, meaning ┬áthat no transfer tax is paid because there is no sales price paid.

To record an exempt deed, first Cook requires you to fill out a complete MyDec form for an exempt deed. This is not required if you show up at the recorder’s office to record an exempt deed. It takes about 15-20 minutes to fill out a MyDec form online. Why would I do that when I can record the exempt deed in person without filling it out?

Second, Cook County requires that you be reqistered as a title company with MyDec, which requires filling out a bunch of forms that have to be approved by the county.

So, while I can e-record deeds very easily in most counties in the country I can’t record a deed in the county where I live.

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