Oneida County offers free property fraud alert program
For the Star Journal
RHINELANDER – Anyone watching television or listening to the radio has likely heard a commercial or two for companies offering home title monitoring or property fraud protection services. Oneida County Register of Deeds Kyle Franson said his office is aware of the existence of those companies, too.
“We have received phone calls and questions regarding [these companies], their fees and the services they may offer,” Franson stated in a press release. “It is important to understand that [these companies] are not title insurance policies and cannot prevent fraudulent activity on your property. [They] charge a monthly or annual fee for a service that periodically checks for document activity.”
Franson is offering a free alternative to Oneida County property owners. Property Fraud Alert is a free notification service offered through the register of deeds office. It allows owners to go online and set up alerts on real estate they own in the county.
Property owners need to enter their name or entity information into the system, then any time there is recording against the name or entity, an automated alert will be emailed or a text will be sent.
“This service allows you to possibly catch property fraud sooner rather than later,” Franson noted. “There are similar Property Fraud Alert options offered in many other counties throughout Wisconsin. Property owners should check and see if similar alerts can be set up in each county where they own real estate.”
Franson said he encourages everyone to contact their register of deeds office before considering contracting with a service, getting copies of their deed, mortgage, related documents or anyone needing certified copies of vital records. In almost all cases, he said, his office can provide the information needed for less money than what outside companies may charge.
To sign up, go to the Oneida County website, www.co.oneida.wi.us Click on “Departments,” and then select the Register of Deeds. Scroll down to Related Links section and click on the Oneida County Property Fraud Alert link.