In the wake of the novel Coronavirus outbreak, many businesses and departments are temporarily shutting their doors to keep up with an ever-expanding list of new regulations and restrictions. At MacGregor, our staff members are experienced, seasoned, and knowledgeable, and we make it our business to remain up-to-date on the latest changes within the industry, including updates involving changes due to COVID-19. We continue to pride ourselves in our ability to adapt quickly to problems and embrace our instinct to find unique solutions to tricky questions.
MacGregor Abstract will remain open and will continue to close and insure transactions in an effort to provide support to our clients during this time.
The New York State Department of Financial Services, which regulates the title insurance industry, has issued a statement confirming the essential nature of the services provided by MacGregor Abstract. “DFS believes that reasonable and prudent efforts by regulated entities during this outbreak to assist consumers and businesses under these unusual and extreme circumstances are consistent with safe and sound insurance practices as well as in the public interest”. “DFS also urges all regulated entities, in their capacity as creditors to businesses of all sizes, to work with and provide accommodations to their borrowers during this unprecedented global emergency to the extent reasonable and prudent.” With this in mind, we will remain open and continue to offer our services.
We have been staying up to date on all of the latest information surrounding the state of the New York title insurance industry in regard to COVID-19, and will be providing status updates frequently in an effort to support our clients and local businesses.
New York State Department Closures as of March 19, 2020:
- Please be advised that the New York County Clerk’s Office Docket is no longer open for filing documents. There is currently no ability to file Building Loan Agreements, Mechanics Liens, Sidewalk Violations or Lis Pendens, nor can copies of the same be obtained. Questions regarding this closure can be directed to the New York State Division Office.
- Please note that the Nassau County Clerk’s Office is closed as of 12:00 pm March 19, 2020 and will remain closed indefinitely in response to COVID-19. Questions regarding this closure should be directed to the New York State Division Office.
In an effort to provide the most accurate information, the NYS Land Title Association Land Records Committee has been surveying the county in order to provide a record of staff changes, operational updates, and closures of various land records offices in the state. We at MacGregor Abstract, Long Island abstract company, have summarized the statewide closures for ease of access and understanding.
The current lands records office closures are listed below:
- Dutchess Surrogate Court closed until further notice.
- Montgomery County Clerk County Clerk closed until 3/31/2020. No other information
- The Nassau County Assessment office is closed until 4/2/20 – Tax verification letters which are a requirement for all recording submissions must be generated online at https://lrv.nassaucountyny.gov.tmv
- Niagara County is open but closed to the public. 50% staff until further notice. No remote access
- Onondaga County is closed until 4/1/20. Online searching available.
- Orange County Clerk closed until further notice. Surrogate closed and no date given for reopen.
- Rensselaer County is open, but closed to the public. No remote access available.
- Richmond County Register closed to the public except Title Industry performing essential title search tasks will be given limited access to the Public Access Center between the hours of 9 AM – 2PM. All Real Property instruments for filing or recording should be submitted to the Office by mail.
- Saratoga County Clerk record room is closed. Only online searching available.
- Schoharie County is closed for 2 weeks and Fed-Ex is not being accepted until further notice.
- Steuben County Clerk’s Office closed (1 week for cleaning) or until further notice.
- Suffolk County is Closed to the public until further notice. Searchers given access to clerk index database (1986 – date); Surrogate and Civil Actions not available. Searchers can run searches only from 1986. All documents required to be recorded or filed be sent in via a trackable mail service, as drop off availability in the lobby may be ending shortly without notice.
- Sullivan County Surrogate Court closed until further notice.
- Washington County is closed until further notice.
As always, MacGregor Abstract is committed to lending our 30+ years of experience to our clients who look to us for guidance in the New York title insurance industry. We would like to again emphasize that we will remain open in order to support our clients, we will continue to provide the essential functions of closing and insuring transactions as well as providing expert level advice. Now more than ever we are available to help, challenges are always welcome.