For All Your Abstract and Title Insurance Needs in Jefferson,

St. Lawrence and Lewis Counties

315-782-4203 | Watertown, NY

Jefferson Abstract Corporation - Abstractor Watertown facebook logo-bw twitter logo-bw box House s13 House

The decision to buy a home (or some sort of property) is a major decision. You and your lender will want to make sure that the property is yours and no one will have liens, claims or encumbrances on the property. Title insurance guarantees that the title to real property is free from all defects in title that may exist in the public records.


Potential title defects may include:

Do you have some questions about title insurance, the difference between title and casualty, or an abstract of title? Jefferson Abstract Corp. of Watertown will do its best to answer all of your questions and educate you on different topics.

Answers for all of your important questions

Title Insurance

Have any other questions for us?

Call 315-782-4203

Title Insurance is a contractual obligation that protects against losses resulting from various types of defects (as set out in the policy) that exist in the title of a specific parcel of real property. This protection is effective as of the issue date of the policy. Title companies issue policies on all types of real property.

What is Title Insurance?

Title insurance companies will work in advance of issuing your policy and identify encumbrances on the title, alerting you to possible losses that may be caused by title defects for a one-time fee. The largest portion of the title insurance premium goes towards eliminating risk.


A casualty insurer collects premiums from your policyholders in order to establish reserve funds that will be used to pay for expected losses.

What is the Difference Between Title Insurance and Casualty Insurance?

Title insurance protects you and your lender if someone challenges your property title because of alleged title defects, which may have been unknown at the time you purchased the property and secured title insurance. A title insurance policy also contains provisions for the payment of legal fees in defense of a claim against your property that is covered under the title policy.


It also contains provisions for payment of losses which result from a covered claim. Coverage can benefit the homeowner or the mortgage company (lender).

Who Does Title Insurance Protect?

Both buyers and lenders in a real estate transaction need title insurance. Title companies usually issue two types of policies, an owner's policy that insures the buyer for as long as they own the property, and a lender's policy that insures the lender's security interest has priority over the claims that others may have in the property.

Who Should Purchase Title Insurance?

The buyer should insure for the full purchase price of the property. The lender needs a policy for the amount of the loan.

How Much Insurance Do I Need?

Local practice determines who pays premiums, not the law. This could be a negotiation point between the seller and the buyer. Your escrow officer can advise you who normally pays the premiums in your area.

Who Pays the Premiums for Title Policies?

Title insurance premiums are based on the amount of coverage provided. The schedule of rates, forms and any rate modifications are required to be filed with the insurance commissioner.

How are Title Premiums Determined and When is the Premium Paid?

A concise, summarized history of the title to a specific parcel of real property, together with a statement of all liens and encumbrances that may be affecting the property. The abstract of title does not guarantee or assure the validity of the title of the property. It merely discloses those items about the property which are of public record, and thus does not reveal such things as encroachments, forgeries and the like.

What is an Abstract of Title?

  • Errors or omissions in deeds

  • Mistakes in examining records

  • Forgery

  • Undisclosed heirs

  • Missing heirs

  • Liens for unpaid taxes

  • Liens by contractors

Before issuing a policy, title companies check for defects in your title by examining public records. This can include deeds, mortgages, wills, divorce decrees, court documents, tax records, liens, encumbrances and maps. The title company will determine who owns the property and what debts may be outstanding.