Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett signed the state’s recently passed Uniform Real Property Electronic Recording Act (Act 100), and the law becomes effective in the state immediately.  Read the full text of Pennsylvania’s law here.

What Is the Uniform Real Property Electronic Recording Act?

The best definitions and explanations live on Wikipedia, as any reader of this blog knows that I frequently refer to this source to provide a quick layman’s summary of complex legal terms and items. For the URPERA, here is the general definition:

[URPERA] is one of the Uniform Acts drafted by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL) with the intention of harmonizing state laws in force in the states…The purpose of the URPERA is to allow county clerks and recorders to electronically record information on real property and land records.

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That’s as simple as an explanation gets.  Another helpful site to learn more about the Uniform Real Property Electronic Recording Act is the Uniform Law Commission’s website, where you can see the full text of the law, a list of states where the law is adopted, and a list of states where the law is being considered by the legislature (currently, Massachusetts and West Virginia.

What The URPERA Means For Mechanics Lien Claimants

The URPERA is important for folks in the construction industry because it makes filing a mechanics lien remarkably easier and faster. States who’ve adopted the URPERA allow counties to accept mechanics lien filings electronically.

When filing a mechanics lien electronically, claimants eliminate a number of time consuming and expensive steps. A courier isn’t required to file the document, for example, which means the costs are lower and the turn-around time is quicker.

Plus, mechanics lien claims are notorious for getting rejected by recorders for a variety of valid (and more frequently, invalid) reasons. When this happens and the recording is being made on paper, the rejection and resubmission process can take days. When electronic recording is accepted, however, the process only takes minutes.

Does This Mean Anyone Can File A Mechanics Lien Electronically?

No, it doesn’t.

The URPERA does not create a mechanism where anyone can go to the recorders website, upload a document and pay the filing fee. The electronic recording law simplifies the recording process and allows electronic recording, but only allows this through certain gateways, and only from approved “submitters.”

Practically speaking, construction companies and building supply companies would not be an authorized “submitter.”  It’s just not worth it for these companies to purchase the software and fulfill the counties’ requirements. Instead, those interested in filing a mechanics lien electronically would go through an authorized submitter (like levelset).

levelset is an authorized e-submitter in most counties across the United States who file mechanics liens electronically under the Uniform Real Property Electronic Recording Act. This is a huge asset to our clients, as we can frequently get a mechanics lien filed on the very same day it is ordered from us.  It’s another way that levelset distinguishes itself from the competition and is the smart choice for your company.