In 2012, 2012 Virginia Laws ch. 74 was passed, amending Va. Code Ann. § 17.1-223(A) to allow clerks to reject a “deed” for recording if it did not (inter alia) include, when applicable, the Virginia State Bar number of the attorney who prepared the deed. “Deed” was not clearly defined by Virginia statutes, which created ambiguity as to whether the term applied only to deeds or deeds of trust (so much ambiguity that conflicting feedback was provided by several Virginia County Circuit Courts to us concerning which documents were considered a “deed”).
Taking a conservative approach, we added the bar number to all of our generic Virginia deeds of trusts and assignments (see the announcement concerning this change at: http://www.docutechcorp.com/document-change-virginia-security-instruments-and-assignments).
This year, 2013 Virginia Laws ch. 193 (HB 1507) was passed, again amending Va. Code Ann. § 17.1-223. This legislation repeals the provisions concerning the bar number in Subsection (A) and substantively re-enacts it in Subsection (B). However, this re-enactment also clarifies that the provision does not apply to deeds of trust, as follows (in relevant part):
“The attorney or party who prepares the writing for recordation shall ensure that the writing satisfies the requirements of Subsection A and that . . .
(iii) a deed conveying not more than four residential dwelling units states on the first page of the document that it was prepared by the owner of the real property or by an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth where such statement by an attorney shall include the name and Virginia State Bar number of the attorney who prepared the deed, provide, however, that clause (iii) shall not apply to deeds of trust . . .”
Due to this change in (and clarification of) the bar number requirement, we will be removing the bar number from all of the following Virginia security instruments and assignments:
1. VA Deed of Trust (Cx354)
2. VA Deed of Trust FHA (Cx407)
3. VA Deed of Trust Second (Cx512)
4. VA HELOC Deed of Trust (Cx1335)
5. VA Deed of Trust Second – Federal Home Loan Bank Set-Aside Program (Cx16536)
6. VA Assignment of Deed of Trust (Cx1552)
7. VA Assignment from MERS (Cx4352)
8. VA Assignment – INV BLANK (Cx4510)
This change will take effect on July 8, 2013. If you have any questions or concerns about these changes, please contact Client Support at 1.800.497.3584.
July 1, 2013