2020 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 1. Abstracting
§1-41. Unlawful business inducements - Charges for abstracts, abstract extensions, supplemental abstracts and final title reports - List of abstracting fees - Civil penalties.
A. It shall be unlawful for any abstractor as an inducement to obtaining any business to pay, rebate, or deduct any portion of or to permit any deduction from a charge made for making, extending, or certifying an abstract of title, to:
1. Any owner, mortgagee, or lessee of the real property covered by the abstract of title, or of any right, title, or interest in or lien upon the same;
2. Any principal, broker, agent, or attorney in connection with a sale or lease of real property or the making or obtaining of a loan thereon in which an abstract of title is required, used, or furnished; and
3. Any spouse, child, employee, ward, officer, director, subsidiary, affiliate, parent, relative within the fifth degree, personal representative, or partner of any person, firm, or corporation included in this section.
B. All charges for abstracts, abstract extensions, supplemental abstracts or final title reports shall be separately stated and shall not be combined with title insurance, closing fees, or examination charges, shall be uniform for all abstracts, abstract extensions, supplemental abstracts or final title reports of whatsoever kind or nature, whether the abstract, abstract extension, supplemental abstract or final title report is prepared for use by the abstractor or for others purchasing abstracts, abstract extensions, supplemental abstracts or final title reports from the abstractor; and any other charge therefor shall be unlawful.
C. The list of abstracting fees required to be attached to an application for certificate of authority, an application to renew a certificate of authority and an application to transfer a certificate of authority pursuant to the provisions of Section 227.18 of this title shall include all fees the applicant intends to charge for abstracts, abstract extensions, supplemental abstracts or final title reports. The Oklahoma Abstractors Board shall notify the applicant in writing of any action taken with regard to the requested fees within sixty (60) days of submission. If no notice is provided regarding the submitted fees, they will be deemed to become effective on the sixty-first day following the day the application was submitted to the Board. The fees shall also be subject to the following:
1. No fee shall be charged that is not on the approved list;
2. The holder of the certificate of authority may submit an amended list of fees once a year requesting approval for changes to the currently approved fees; and
3. The amended list of fees must be approved before becoming effective. The Board may disapprove a list of fees or an amended list of fees if the fees are determined to be excessive or are used as an unlawful inducement. In determining whether a fee is excessive, the Board may consider any or all of the following:
- a.the change from any prior rate for the same abstract, abstract extension, supplemental abstract or final title report,
- b.the fee charged by other holders of certificates of authority within the same county, in adjacent counties, and in counties with similar characteristics,
- c.the amount of work performed,
- d.the time required to perform the work,
- e.the amount of financial risk involved to the holder of the certificate of authority,
- f.the cost of providing the abstract, abstract extension, supplemental abstract or final title report,
- g.the availability of competition,
- h.the average cost for such services across the state, and
- i.any other relevant factor applicable to a particular set of circumstances presented for approval.
D. In addition to any other penalty any person, firm, corporation, or other entity violating the provisions of this section shall be subject to a civil penalty of not less than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) and not more than One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) for each occurrence. The fine may be enforced in the same manner in which civil judgments may be enforced.
Added by Laws 1984, c. 163, § 19, eff. Nov. 1, 1984. Amended by Laws 2006, c. 269, § 10, eff. July 1, 2007; Laws 2007, c. 359, § 21, eff. Jan. 1, 2008. Renumbered from Title 74, § 227.28 by Laws 2007, c. 359, § 22, eff. Jan. 1, 2008.