Recording Fee Overages

When you receive a small check for $2.00 or less in the mail, do you always deposit it?  Or do you throw it away?

Most closing attorneys have borrowers sign a statement at closing that allows the attorney to keep any overage for recording fees.  This could give an incentive to over-estimate recording costs. 

Origin Title and Escrow does NOT take any money that is not part of our fee.  If it’s listed as a recording fee on the closing statement and we don’t need it to record the deed, it’s returned to the borrower.  If the check never clears, the money then escheats to the state after 7 years.  Unfortunately, over the years, we have given the State of Georgia over $7,000 because borrowers have failed to deposit these small checks.

Hopefully this will soon come to an end because, going into effect January 1st, 2020, recording a document in the State of Georgia will cost a flat fee of $25. It really does matter who the closing attorney is, and borrowers can usually choose their own. Why give away even $10 when it’s not necessary?