Bulletin: NY000205

Date:
May 16, 2003
To:
All New York State Office Counsel, Managers and Agents
RE:
1) City Register Transactions; 2) Increase Filing Fees for Form RP-5217 (Equalization & Assessment)

Dear Associates:

(1) Last month the New York City Department of Finance announced that only certain specified forms of payment will be accepted by New York City Payment Centers for City Register Transactions. Today, the New York State Land Title Association has been informed that title insurance companies and their agents will be exempted from the requirement to pay by bank or certified check. The exemption will apply to agents to the extent that their checks are guaranteed by an underwriter.

(2) An element of the proposed new budget for the State of New York is a proposal to amend Real Property Law Section 333 sub.3 to increase the fee for filing Form RP-5217 (and Form RP-5217NYC) (commonly known as the Equalization and Assessment Form) from $25.00 to $50.00.

The amended statute and resultant increased fee will become effective immediately upon becoming law. As you may already be aware, the passage of a budget increase has been particularly contentious this year and it remains to be seen when it will become law and which proposals will actually be included. It does appear, however, that this particular provision will be included in any version of the budget that is eventually enacted.

It would, of course, be prudent to prepare for what appears to be the inevitable implementation of the increased fee, however, also be prepared to refund the unused portion of the fee collected for documents filed prior to the effective date of the increase.

If you have any questions, as always, please contact your Company representative or Company Counsel.

THIS BULLETIN IS FURNISHED TO INFORM YOU OF CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS. AS A REMINDER, YOU ARE CHARGED WITH KNOWLEDGE OF THE CONTENT ON VIRTUAL UNDERWRITER  AS IT EXISTS FROM TIME TO TIME AS IT APPLIES TO YOU, AS WELL AS ANY OTHER INSTRUCTIONS. OUR UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS DO NOT AUTHORIZE OUR ISSUING AGENTS TO ENGAGE IN SETTLEMENTS OR CLOSINGS ON BEHALF OF STEWART TITLE GUARANTY COMPANY. THIS BULLETIN IS NOT INTENDED TO DIRECT YOUR ESCROW OR SETTLEMENT PRACTICES OR TO CHANGE PROVISIONS OF APPLICABLE UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS. CONFIDENTIAL, PROPRIETARY, OR NONPUBLIC PERSONAL INFORMATION SHOULD NEVER BE SHARED OR DISSEMINATED EXCEPT AS ALLOWED BY LAW. IF APPLICABLE STATE LAW OR REGULATION IMPOSES ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS, YOU SHOULD CONTINUE TO COMPLY WITH THOSE REQUIREMENTS.

References

Bulletins Replaced:
None
Related Bulletins:
NY000204 City Register Transactions
Underwriting Manual:
None
Exceptions Manual:
None
Forms:
None