Paula Sollami Covello
Mercer County Clerk
TRENTON, NJ - Mercer County Clerk, Paula Sollami Covello, is alerting all county homeowners about a direct mail solicitation from a private company offering to provide them with a certified copy of their deed at a cost of $69.50. The name of the company listed on the letterhead of the solicitation is "National Deed Service, Inc.", with a Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC address, and a Toll-Free number. The letter advises property owners that their deed is recorded by the County Clerk and leads the reader to believe a certified copy of the deed is necessary.
The company instructs owners to pay them a fee of $69.50 to obtain a certified copy of their deed. "This fee is excessive since the County Clerk's Office provides this as a government service for a minimal cost," said Sollami Covello. Mercer County land owners may obtain a certified copy of their recorded deed, at anytime, at their convenience, directly from the Mercer County Clerk's Office for the cost of only $1.50 dollars per page and a certification charge of $10.00. "Don't fall for this trap. No property owner needs to pay $69.50 to a private company for a certified copy of their recorded deed. It is regretful that a company would prey upon unknowing, financially overburdened homeowners, especially in our senior population, many of whom are on fixed incomes, by offering a service that already exists by County government," stated Sollami Covello. The State of New Jersey's Division of Consumer Affairs is looking into this matter, and the County Clerks of New Jersey are urging legislation on a united front to avoid this problem in the future, according to Sollami Covello.
Homeowners interested in obtaining a certified copy of their deed in person at the Mercer County Clerk's Office should go to the Courthouse Annex at 209 South Broad Street, in Trenton, NJ from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Property owners who cannot obtain a copy of their deed in person may send a letter of request to the County Clerk's Office, but are advised to first call the Recording Section of the Mercer County Clerk's Office at (609) 989-6464 and provide their complete property address, purchase date and lot and block number if available, along with the full name of the owner so that they can be properly advised as to the appropriate payment information and mailing instructions.
The Mercer County Clerk's Office is located in the Old Courthouse at 209 South Broad Street in Trenton and is open Monday-Friday 8am-4pm and Wednesdays until 6:45pm. The Clerk's Office is responsible for processing passport applications, recording realty land documents, processing notary applications, providing County I.D. cards and registering small businesses.