Bulletin: MA2019001

Date:
November 11, 2019
To:
All Massachusetts Issuing Offices
RE:
UNDERWRITING - Registry of Deeds to Increase Recording Fees - Effective 12/31/2019

Dear Associates:

Effective December 31, 2019, Registry of Deeds and Registry Districts will increase their recording fees as a result of an increase in the Community Preservation Act surcharge which is presently collected pursuant to M.G.L. Chapter 44B section 8 and is included as part of the recording fee collected by the Registrar of Deeds and Registry Districts.

The Community Preservation Act (CPA) helps communities to preserve their open spaces and historic sites, create affordable housing, and develop outdoor recreational facilities. Towns and cities that adopt the CPA fund the program through a surcharge on local property tax bills, which the Commonwealth matches from the recording surcharge. As more communities have adopted the CPA, more funds were needed, and on July 31, 2019, the Governor signed the Commonwealth’s Budget for Fiscal Year 2020, increasing the surcharge collected by the Registry of Deeds and Registry Districts.

The surcharge will increase from $20 to $50, with the exception of municipal lien certificates which will increase from $10 to $25. There is no surcharge for Declarations of Homestead. As a result, the recording fees for most documents will increase by $30, with the fee to record a municipal lien certificate increasing by $15.

For a quick reference guide on recording charges, please see:  https://www.stewart.com/content/dam/stewart/Microsites/massachusetts/pdfs/Registry-Fees.pdf

If you have any questions relating to this or other bulletins, please contact a Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter. 

For on-line viewing of this and other bulletins, please log onto www.vuwriter.com.

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:
None
Underwriting Manual:
None
Exceptions Manual:
None
Forms:
None