When there are changes to the ownership of a property, documents such as deeds or mortgages must be prepared, updated, and recorded with the City Register. The City Register reviews property-related documents that are submitted to their office for recording, and if they detect suspicious activity, they will report it to the Sheriff’s Office for investigation.

The best way you can prevent deed fraud is to register for the Notice of Recorded Document Program. Whenever a document is recorded on your property, you will be notified.

If you suspect that fraudulent documents were recorded or were recorded without authorization, you should contact the Sheriff’s Office immediately.

The Sheriff's Office accepts reports of deed fraud.

After reporting to the Sheriff, you should request a copy of the fraudulent document from the City Register's Office and report the crime to the district attorney in the borough where the property is located. You may also want to consult an attorney to confirm your ownership of the property.

Online

Report deed fraud.

Phone

Call 311 for assistance.

By Mail

Mail your report to:

NYC Office of the Sheriff
Bureau of Criminal Investigation
Intelligence Unit
30-10 Starr Avenue, 2nd Floor
Long Island City, NY 11101

By Fax

Send a fax to: (718) 707-2195

There are two key steps every New Yorker should take to prevent deed fraud:

  • Register for the Notice of Recorded Document Program, which notifies you when a document related to your property is recorded.
  • Check your property’s deed: Check the City Register’s records at least once a year to make sure that no deeds or mortgages have been recorded on your property without your consent. You will need to know your property’s borough, block, and lot number, which can be found on your most recent property tax bill or go to the Borough-Block-Lot (BBL) Lookup page.
    • Visit ACRIS to check your deed for properties located in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens.
    • Vist Richmond County Clerk’s website to check your deed if your property is located in Staten Island.

You should also make sure to:

  • Confirm that the Department of Finance has the correct mailing address for you or the person who should receive notices about your property
  • Contact the Department of Finance if you stop receiving property tax bills and the Department of Environmental Protection if you stop receiving water bills.
  • If your property is vacant, check it often to make sure it is not occupied illegally.
  • Ask someone you trust to look after your house and collect your mail if you’re going to be away for a long period of time
  • Make sure your will clearly states who should inherit your property when you pass away.
  • When a family member passes away and someone else inherits the property, make sure you update the deed with the new owner's name.
  • Buy title insurance. It's a one-time fee that varies depending on the purchase value of your home.
  • Discuss with your trusted family members or consult a lawyer before making any decisions that affect ownership of your property, such as adding or removing someone from a deed or taking out a new mortgage, reverse mortgage, or second mortgage.

The Notice of Recorded Document Program helps combat real estate fraud and limit its harm by notifying property owners whenever a deed, mortgage, or related document for their property is recorded.

You can sign up to get email, text, or mail notifications. If you receive a notification and suspect fraud, you should contact the Sheriff’s Office immediately.

It’s free to register, but text message rates may apply, so you should check with your cell phone provider.

You can register for the program if you are a:

  • Property owner or the owner's agent (child, spouse, or domestic partner of owner if a designee)
  • Managing agent
  • Property owner's attorney
  • Lien holder
  • Executor or administrator of the estate of the owner or lien holder

Learn More

Get answers to frequently asked questions about the program.

Download frequently asked questions about the program in English.

Download frequently asked questions about the program in ArabicBengaliChineseFrenchHaitian CreoleKoreanPolishRussianSpanish, and Urdu.

Sign Up

You can register online for email and text message notifications. To receive letter notifications, you must make your request by mail.

Email and Text

Sign up for the Notice of Recorded Document Program.

Mail

To receive notifications by mail, you must complete and mail an application.

Mail to:

NYC Department of Finance
Division of Land Records, Office of the City Register
66 John Street, 13th Floor
New York, NY 10038
Attn: Notice of Recorded Document

Download the Notice of Recorded Document Application.

Download the Notice of Recorded Document Application in ArabicBengaliChineseFrenchHaitian CreoleKoreanPolishRussianSpanish, and Urdu.

Call 311 to request a paper copy.

Online

Contact DOF.

In Person

Visit a DOF Business Center.