What You Should Know About
the New Ohio Good Funds Law
Ohio’s new Good Funds law takes effect April 6, 2017, and all consumers should know and understand the new requirements.
The basic thrust of the new law is to eliminate, with certain exceptions, the use of all checks in the sale, purchase or refinance of residential real estate. The transfer of money by federal wire transfer system will become the standard method of operation.
The original Good Funds legislation was enacted in 1996, and many things have changed in the banking system since then. The revised Good Funds law now requires title agents to follow stricter controls when managing and closing escrows involving residential real property. (While not required by the new law, many title agents will probably apply the same rules to commercial transactions.) All payment transactions more than $1,000.00 must now be transferred to the title agent’s escrow account by wire.
Funds may be by personal check, business check, official bank check, certified check, cashier’s check or money orders (drawn from an existing account), as long as the total of all these checks does not exceed the sum of $1,000.00
- EXCEPTION to the new law: If the funds are initiated by the United States, the State of Ohio or by an agency, they may be in the form of a check or an automated clearing house (ACH) transaction
- EXCEPTION to the new law: Funds drawn from a real estate broker’s trust account may be in the form of a business check in any amount.
Consumers may (and should) worry about the possibility of wire fraud during the funds transfer, so it is important to follow proper procedures for every wire transaction. At Aronoff, Rosen & Hunt LPA and Tri-State Land Title Agency, Inc., we recommend that all wire instructions be provided to us in writing and sent by facsimile, US mail or delivered to us in person. Many still send instructions by email and this provokes much of the fraud occurring today. Fraudsters try to hack title company emails and information about their escrow accounts (this is where the money is stolen from).
When we receive instructions to send funds by wire, we will attempt to contact the sender by telephone or in person to verify that the bank account to which the funds are to be sent is, in fact, the correct account. Do not be offended if we contact you to confirm this information as an added precaution. Once the funds are wired to the wrong account, the chances of receiving them back are slim.
This is only a brief summary of the law. As President of AR&H’s affiliated title agency, Tri-State Land Title Agency, contact me at 513-241-7247 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Tina M. Donnelly, Esq. at 513-241-0400 or email@example.com with any questions on how this new legislation pertains to your company.
Originally established in 1928 by Irwin I. Aronoff, the firm’s practice has grown and thrived on a commitment to excellence. Our clients vary from large corporations and financial institutions to charitable and other nonprofit organizations. They include real estate developers, builders, banking institutions and individuals. Aronoff, Rosen & Hunt, LPA strives for comprehensive and cost-effective solutions for all of our clients thanks to a team of skilled attorneys and professional support staff.
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