On a Facebook post yesterday, Clerk of Court Eddie Holmes explained title fraud following calls from concerned citizens.
“There has been a new media push about “Title Fraud” lately. Which claims someone forges documents that they own property and then sell it or apply for mortgages etc.
I’ve had a few people call me with concerns. My take on the issue.
1. It’s ultimately an attempt to sell “Title Lock Insurance”. It’s a gimmicky service where they claim to monitor your public records for you. This type of fraud is a very low risk to property owners in our area (or in general).
2. ALL property records for our parish are public record and maintained by this office. You may check on them for yourself anytime you see fit. We have public terminals available for you to use and browse as long as you like.
3. Our tax assessor has a FREE website (maintained by your tax dollars) where you can check current ownership of property on any parcel in Bienville Parish. They collect the deed data from the clerk’s office on a daily basis to update their records. They do an excellent job of keeping up-to-date information. http://www.bienvilleassessor.com You can search by name, address, or property.
4. If you really want to stay on top of things, you can sign up for the Clerk’s Legal News Service. Every month we email a complete listing of our filings for that month for $35 a month. You can call us for more information. 318-263-2123. **The Clerk’s office is self-funded and receives NO TAX dollars. Which is why our services are fee based**.
Lastly, if you have any concern or if you receive any sort of suspicious document in the mail or any offer regarding your property, please call 318-263-2123 and I will look into it for you.
It’s a scary, crazy world we live in now, but often times the risk is played up by others to make another dollar.”