In new record time
In the last few years, the San Joaquin County, Calif., Recorder/County Clerk's office has been making adjustments to do more with fewer new employees and a changing workload. In 2010, the staff of 31 employees processed more than 170,000 land records and 15,000 vital records. Although those numbers are lower than usual because of the recession, Teresa Williamson, chief deputy in charge of the Recording Office, anticipates that demand for land records will rise more quickly than her headcount when the economy recovers. So in December 2010, the office integrated electronic recording (e-recording) software to automate land title submissions for processing.
San Joaquin County already had automated its land and vital records recording using Eagle Recorder software from Dallas-based Tyler Technologies. What previously involved 15 manual steps — from reviewing paper land records (transfer documents, trust deeds, tax liens, etc.) and vital records (birth, death and marriage certificates), keying the information into the county's computer for storage and document management, to preparing outbound mailings — was reduced to five electronically enabled steps. Tasks are completed in about 20 percent of the time it previously took. Reams of paper are saved, and filings that took a week or more to handle manually are electronically processed, checked, certified and returned to title companies and their customers in minutes.
In March 2010, San Joaquin began further automating its processes by integrating Eagle QuickDocs. Pre-qualified title companies now can submit their land records electronically, and the electronic document does not have to be scanned, labeled or returned. The electronic image is examined and then accepted for recording. All fees are calculated automatically by the system, and all recording information is electronically applied upon acceptance, significantly reducing errors and eliminating all paper processing by the staff for the recordings.
The e-recording process frees staff to work with companies, agencies and residents on activities that require personal interaction. Title companies prefer e-recording because it keeps them in the field rather than in line at the Clerk's Office, and it gives them an advantage over their competitors that do not submit records electronically.
Project: Electronic recording
Jurisdiction: San Joaquin County, Calif.
Agency: Recorder/County Clerk's Office
Vendor: Dallas-based Tyler Technologies
Date completed: December 2010
Cost: $20,000 (software), $20,000 (services)