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Adding a blank 1st Page Cover Sheet to recordings- Maryland
by CHARLENE PERRY | 2014/07/07 |

Some jurisdictions in Maryland have begun using a 1st page cover sheet which the clerk attaches to the final recorded document.  


This 1st page cover sheet becomes part of the public record and is being used by the Clerks of the Court to allow them to have space for their stamps.

Many in our industry have taken issue with the use of this 1st page cover sheet fearing that it will cause confusion in future title searches, specifically as it relates to "being clauses"

It is common practice in Maryland for abstractors to send their report to us listing the open mortgages and exceptions by Liber/Folio using, obviously, the first recorded page as the official reference.  It is also common practice for title agents to print page 1 of the document referred to in the title report and to only print the balance of the recorded document if the lender needs it.  Title agents typically review the recorded documents on line thereby saving the expense of printing needlessly.  

If the clerks of the court insist on using this blank 1st page cover sheet, all recording done in these jurisdiction will have a first page that all look exactly alike on first glance.   While the document does have a receipt printed on it which does refer to the document type and the name of the Grantor/Grantee it will be difficult for those of us reviewing title to accurately review and report the status of title without having to go beyond the abstractor's report and retreiving the  "actual" first page for review.    

And, too, how do we report the recorded document?  Do we report the blank first page, which has only a receipt on it or do we report "page 2" which is the beginning of the "meat" of the document? 

MLTA has proposed that a compromise be attempted with the Clerk's offices and have suggested that this new blank page be added to the end of the document, rather than at the beginning.  The clerk has balked at this option.  

I have scheduled a meeting with the Clerk of the Court for Harford County on Wednesday, July 9, 2014 at 1:00 pm. to be held in my office- Key Title, Inc. , 35 Fulford Avenue, Bel Air, MD 21014

If you want your voice to be heard on this issue, please join us.  Please RSVP to me at .  If you cannot attend, please weigh in here with your opinion of this practice or to offer additional compromise solutions.



547 words | 3994 views | 4 comments | log in or register to post a comment

Re: Adding a blank 1st Page Cover Sheet to recordings- Maryland
Charlene, Aren't these basically recording cover pages then?  These are used throughout NYS and present no problem. 
by John Sauers | 2014/07/08 | log in or register to post a reply

Adding a cover to recordings
Many counties in the states I record documents in (PA & NJ) also add first, and sometimes last pages to a document.  Some even have two or three front recording cover sheets that tell you who submitted the document, and where it is being returned to, as well as all the indexing information.  And some mortgage companies are now using a new mortgage cover page that summarizes the indexing information before the rest of the mortgage pages that are initialed and signed by the borrower.  A few counties have even gotten away from using Book and Page numbers all together and now use instrument numbers instead!  With more and more property records not even going into books that rest on a roller shelf, it is inevitable that the industry is moving in that direction. Book and Page numbers made more sense when there were actual books.  Now that we have computers with imaging, an instrument number is going to be more important.  Indeed, on my commitments, I have been taking great pains to also identify any unique instrument number a document may have such as a Docket, File or Instrument Number, knowing full well that there may come a time that these numbers will be more important than a book and page number.  When I order searches now, I request full copies of all documents.  It's probably what we always should have been doing, rather then just getting partial copies of front, signature and legal descriptions.  Those other pages sometimes contain some interesting facts you may need to complete your report. 
by Jeffrey Land | 2014/07/14 | log in or register to post a reply

Update to original post

The BCH Chapter of MLTA met with the Clerk of the Court for Harford County and his staff and as a result of our meeting, the Clerk has agreed to use this blank page as the LAST page of the officially recorded document.

We feel this to be the best option and we appreciate the open dialogue with the Clerk's office.

by CHARLENE PERRY | 2014/07/14 | log in or register to post a reply

Recording info pages and centralized land record depositories
Charlene we have seen the use of the recording info page here in Louisiana in many of the smaller Parishes (counties).  Some people are concerned that this system can lead to fraud.  My concern is in a different direction, I have not completed research on this but I believe this is part of the attempt to standardize recording across the country as a step towards having state and then federal centralized land record depositories.  With e-recording and such, I see a future with no local land record depository such as the Clerk of Court or what have you in your jurisdiction.  There are 3500 or so counties in the US and nearly as many recording formats and systems. Standardizing these recording systems has to be accomplished before there can be a workable national land registration system.  Not an idea I am support.  
by Patrick Miller | 2014/07/28 | log in or register to post a reply



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