Electric revolution

Register of Deeds employee Anita Lane demonstrates the new eRecording system to Chamber of Commerce director Laura Deans, Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, County Manager Ed Causey and NewBridge Bank Vice President Sherri Smith.

Secretary of State Elaine Marshall visited the Register of Deeds office Wednesday morning to announce the using of an electronic filing system. Also pictured is Register of Deeds Eleanor Bradshaw.

The process of filing and recording documents through the Register of Deeds office has just been made easier thanks to a new electronic method now being offered in many of North Carolina’s counties, including Sampson.

eRecording is the process of electronically recording documents by submitting, receiving and processing them for recording in the Register of Deeds office via the Internet, information that, otherwise, would be sent through the postal system or express mail. It is a process that is more effective and time efficient, according to N.C. Secretary of State Elaine Marshall.

Sampson County has been online with the new system since June 1, but Marshall paid a special visit to the local office Wednesday to introduce the system and explain the effectiveness of using what she called a “win-win-win situation.”

“The customer wins, the Register of Deeds office wins and the environment wins,” Marshall asserted during her presentation.

According to the Secretary of State, the new online system streamlines the workload for the employees of the Register of Deeds office, as well as saves trees, time and money in the process.

“eRecording takes out a lot of stress in land documents,” she explained.

Documents submitted to the Register of Deeds office for filing are now either mailed to the office through the postal service or brought into the office by hand. With the use of the new electronic recording system, clients such as lawyers, real estate brokers and banks can now simply file the proper documents through the electronic system. It is a process Anita Lane, Register of Deeds employee, says takes just a few minutes.

“It’s so much easier and it saves a lot of time,” she attested.

“eRecording minimizes a lot of work done with filings,” Marshall acknowledged.

For Marshall, simplifying the process is about the citizens and customers. “This can be and will be defined as customer friendly,” she shared.

The new electronic system, Marshall added, is secure. In fact, she said it may be more secure than the old filing system of using paper. This new process, the Secretary of State added, delivers efficiency in the Register of Deeds office.

“No one has challenged the security of eRecording,” Marshall said. “Many believe this is more secure than the paper system.”

Documents that are submitted for electronic filing, Marshall added, are run through a security process before being finalized for submission into the records. If paperwork lacks any information or authentication, the process and papers are denied for recording.

When this process was first introduced several years ago, Marshall said there was some concern about the legality of the system. To date, there have been no legal issues to arise.

“As folks have begun to do this, the process has evolved,” Marshall stated.

Across the 100 counties in North Carolina, there are 60 which are currently using the eRecording system. That, Marshall said, is 80 percent of the state.

“Every county that has adopted loves using the system,” Marshall said. “There hasn’t been one county that has left the program.”

There are 1,260 counties across the United States who use the electronic system. In fact, Marshall said, there are only six of the 50 states that don’t have any county currently using the system.

“This is truly a digital revolution,” Marshall said. “We are headed to eRecording becoming the norm.”