Orange County Comptroller Phil Diamond recently taught me all about deed fraud, and I think you need to know as well.

I recently had the opportunity to hear Phil Diamond of the Orange County Comptroller Office. During his talk, he brought up an important subject: deed fraud. 

Until recently, I didn’t realize how serious this type of fraud is. For those of you who may not know, deed fraud is when someone records fraudulent documents on your property without your knowledge. This fraud can come in the form of a recorded mortgage, lien, or even an unauthorized contractor’s notice of commencement 

What can you do to protect yourself from these things? A good place to start is visiting this website and registering your property so that anytime someone records something on it, you get an email. This will allow you to investigate whether it is legitimate.

“Deed fraud is when someone records fraudulent documents on your property without you knowing.”

Another thing you can do is to frequently check the comptroller office’s records and make sure everything is up-to-date. If your home happens to be unoccupied, you should also be checking the home often to make sure it has stayed that way. It isn’t unheard of for someone to show up and start living in a vacant home. Some may even try to rent it out.

Another good thing to do if you are going away for an extended period of time is to forward your mail. Give your correct mailing address to the Orange County Comptroller Office and the tax deed service so that important things like tax bills aren’t altered. If for some reason you don’t get your trim notice each year, it is a good indication that someone has altered your records. 

If deed fraud does happen to you, the first thing you need to do is report it to the sheriff’s office. Then, you need to report it to the Orange County Comptroller Office as well. 

If you have any questions about this, please feel free to reach out to me by phone or email. I look forward to speaking with you soon.