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The Hidalgo County Clerk’s Office has a warning for homeowners concerning a deceptive scheme designed to defraud members of the public. County Clerk Arturo Guajardo, Jr. and his staff have received several inquiries from citizens regarding fraudulent letters offering to sell them a certified copy of their property deed for a fee, when they can get the same documents locally.
The fraudulent letters instruct potential victims to contact the third party service to enable them to receive a copy of their property deed. It clearly states they are not affiliated with Hidalgo County or any government agency, however the letter gives the impression it is an official form with company name listed as “Local Records Office” and has an address listed in Austin, Texas. The form has the victims name and property address, as well as details on the home’s value, square footage and date of purchase. The document includes a response or deadline date; and request the homeowner mail a check with a processing fee of $89 to the company.
Mr. Guajardo wants to advise Hidalgo County property owners to be wary of people purporting to sell “actual” deeds. The County Clerk’s office is responsible for recording, filing and preserving all property transactions occurring in the county. They are the only office authorized by law to issue a certified copy of an owner’s property documents.
“Homeowners normally do not keep copies of these documents nor is it necessary for them to get a copy,” said Mr. Guajardo. “However, if the homeowner wishes to get a copy of these documents they may get one from The Hidalgo County Clerk website or they can call our office.”
If you need a copy of your deed, call the Hidalgo County Clerk’s Office at 956.318.2100 or go directly to their office at the Hidalgo County Courthouse (100 N. Closner Edinburg, TX) where you can easily obtain a certified copy of your deed for the small fee of $1 per page. If you would simply like to view your deed, you can do so at the County Clerk website: www.hidalgocountyclerk.us.