How King County Recorder’s Fee Increase Will Impact You and Your Community

If you are planning to buy, sell, or refinance a property in King County, Washington, you may want to do it before January 1, 2024. That’s when the recording fee for most documents will increase by $100, from $203.50 to $303.50 per document1. This fee increase is mandated by state law and will affect deeds, mortgages, liens, easements, and other real estate transactions.

Types of Documents affected:

  • Real estate documents, such as deeds, mortgages, liens, easements, real estate tax affidavits, etc.
  • Survey, condominium and plat maps
  • Power of attorney records
  • Boundary line adjustments
  • Lot line eliminations
  • Termination of maps
  • Amendments to declarations of condominiums
  • Why is the fee increasing?

Specific Documents:

  • Quitclaim deed
  • Warranty deed
  • Lack of probate affidavit
  • Deed of trust
  • Reconveyance
  • Satisfaction of judgment
  • Easement
  • Affidavit of correction of map
  • Declaration of condominium
  • Land corner record
  • Short plat
  • Survey

Why is the King County recording fee increasing?

The fee increase is part of House Bill 1277, which was passed by the Washington State Legislature in 2021. The bill aims to raise funds for affordable housing and homelessness prevention programs in the state. According to the bill’s sponsors, the fee increase will generate about $146 million per year for these purposes2.

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How to Get Your Documents Notarized Online with Remote Online Notarization (RON)

If you are a client of our law firm, you may have received an email and a text from us inviting you to get your documents notarized online using a remote online notarization (RON) platform. RON is a convenient and secure way to get your documents notarized in electronic form, with the signer and the Notary appearing online via audio-video technology. RON is also known as webcam notarization, online notarization, or virtual notarization.

We use RON to get your estate plans, power of attorneys, real estate deeds, and other documents notarized, without requiring you to visit our office or a Notary in person. RON saves you time and money, and ensures the validity and acceptance of your documents.

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The Estimated Costs of Transferring a Property into an LLC in King County, Washington

Transferring a real estate property into an LLC is a common strategy employed by property owners to protect their personal assets and manage their properties more efficiently.  This is especially the case when the property is a rental property or used for business purposes where there is a higher probability of being sued.  The vehicle often used to convey ownership to the LLC is called a "Quit Claim Deed."


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Introducing Online Booking: Improving Communication, Scheduling, Customer Service, and Productivity at Our Law Firm

At our law firm, we are always looking for ways to improve our services and make the experience for our clients as smooth and efficient as possible. That's why we are excited to announce the introduction of an online booking feature for our clients. This new feature will greatly improve communication, scheduling, customer service, and overall productivity at our firm.

One of the biggest benefits of the online booking feature is that it will greatly improve communication between our clients and our firm. Clients will now be able to easily schedule appointments and consultations at their convenience, without the need for phone calls or email exchanges. This will not only save time for both the client and our firm, but it will also ensure that all communication is in writing, making it easier to keep track of and refer back to in the future.

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What is an Advanced Healthcare Directive?

An advanced healthcare directive, also known as a living will or healthcare power of attorney, is a legal document that outlines your wishes for medical treatment if you become incapacitated and are unable to make decisions for yourself. It also allows you to appoint someone to make medical decisions on your behalf, known as a healthcare proxy or agent.

An advanced healthcare directive typically includes two components: a living will and a healthcare power of attorney. A living will is a document that states your preferences for end-of-life care, such as whether or not you want to be placed on life support if you are terminally ill or in a vegetative state. A healthcare power of attorney, on the other hand, allows you to appoint someone to make medical decisions on your behalf in the event that you are unable to do so.

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What is Estate Planning and How Do I Go About Planning an Estate?

Estate planning is the process of organizing and preparing for the distribution of your assets and property after you pass away. It is an important step in ensuring that your wishes are carried out and that your loved ones are taken care of. Estate planning is not just for the wealthy, it is a process that is relevant to everyone, regardless of their financial situation.

The first step in estate planning is to create a will. A will is a legal document that outlines how your assets will be distributed after your death. It also allows you to appoint a guardian for your minor children and name an executor, who will be responsible for carrying out the instructions in your will. Without a will, the distribution of your assets will be determined by the laws of your state, which may not align with your wishes.

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What is the Meaning of Probate and What is the Process?

Probate is the legal process through which a deceased person's assets are distributed to their heirs or beneficiaries. It typically involves the appointment of a personal representative, who is responsible for identifying and collecting the deceased person's assets, paying any debts or taxes, and distributing the remaining assets to the beneficiaries.

The probate process begins with the filing of a petition with the court, which typically includes a copy of the deceased person's will, if one exists. If the deceased person did not have a will, the court will determine who the legal heirs are and distribute the assets accordingly. The personal representative is usually appointed by the court, and is typically a close relative or friend of the deceased person.

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Why It's Recommended to Get a Lawyer for the Naturalization Process

Becoming a naturalized citizen is a significant step for many immigrants living in the United States. The process can be complex, and many people turn to a lawyer for help. In this blog post, we'll discuss what a lawyer can do to help you with the naturalization process, and why you might want to consider hiring one.

First and foremost, a lawyer can provide you with expert guidance and help you navigate the complex legal requirements for naturalization. The process can be confusing and overwhelming, with many forms to fill out, interviews to attend, and tests to pass. A lawyer can help you understand the requirements, ensure that you have all the necessary documentation, and prepare you for the interviews and tests. They can also advise you on how to address any potential roadblocks, such as criminal convictions or other issues that may arise during the process.

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What Are the Differences of Capital Gains on a Second Home?

When it comes to taxes, owning a second home can be a bit complicated. One of the key things to be aware of is the capital gains tax that may be owed when you sell the property.

First, it's important to understand what a capital gain is. A capital gain is the profit that you make from the sale of a capital asset, such as a home. The capital gain is calculated by subtracting the original cost of the asset (also known as the "basis") from the sale price. If the sale price is higher than the basis, you have a capital gain, and if the sale price is lower, you have a capital loss.

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How Do I Get a Permanent Resident Card Renewal?

A permanent resident card, also known as a green card, is an identification card that serves as proof of a person's lawful permanent residency status in the United States. This card is issued by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and allows the holder to live and work in the U.S. permanently. However, it has expiration date, and the holder needs to renew their permanent resident card before the expiration date to maintain the status of the Permanent resident.

The process of renewing a permanent resident card is similar to the process of applying for a new one. The first step in the process is to ensure that you are eligible to renew your card. In order to be eligible to renew your card, you must meet certain criteria, including:

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What is a Tax Lien and How Do You Resolve It?

A tax lien is a legal claim that the government makes against a person's property to secure payment of unpaid taxes. When a person fails to pay their taxes, the government has the right to place a lien on their property, which gives them priority over other creditors in the event that the property is sold. This means that the proceeds from the sale of the property must be used to pay off the outstanding tax debt before any other debts or obligations are satisfied.

There are a few different types of tax liens that can be placed on a property. The most common type is a federal tax lien, which is placed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) when a person owes taxes at the federal level. State and local governments may also place liens on a property for unpaid state or local taxes.

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What is the USCIS Form N-400 For?

Form N-400, also known as the Application for Naturalization, is a document used by legal permanent residents (LPRs) to apply for U.S. citizenship. The form is used to document the individual's eligibility for naturalization and includes information such as their residence history, employment history, and criminal record.

To be eligible for naturalization, an individual must meet certain requirements, including:

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What is a Warranty Deed for Real Estate?

A warranty deed is a legal document that is used to transfer ownership of real estate from one person to another. It is considered one of the most secure forms of real estate conveyance because it offers specific guarantees to the new owner, known as "warranties." Understanding what a warranty deed is and how it works can be important for anyone buying or selling real estate.

A warranty deed is a written document that contains specific promises or guarantees made by the seller (the grantor) to the buyer (the grantee). The key feature of a warranty deed is that it guarantees the buyer that the property being sold is free and clear of any encumbrances, such as mortgages, liens, or other debts. This means that if any issues arise with the property's title, the seller is liable to the buyer for any damages.

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What Are the Capital Gains Tax on Real Estate in Washington State?

Capital gains tax is a tax on the profit that is made when a property is sold for more than it was purchased for. When it comes to real estate, capital gains tax can be a significant consideration for individuals who are looking to sell a property in Washington state. In this blog post, we will explore the capital gains tax laws in Washington state, as well as ways to minimize or avoid paying capital gains tax on a real estate sale.

In Washington state, capital gains tax on real estate is calculated by subtracting the cost basis of the property (usually the purchase price plus any improvements made to the property) from the sale price. The result is then multiplied by the individual's marginal tax rate, which can be found on the federal income tax tables. This means that if you make a profit when you sell a property, that profit will be subject to capital gains tax.

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The Different Types of Trusts Available for Estate Planning

Trusts are a popular and powerful tool for estate planning, allowing individuals to control the distribution of their assets after their death. There are many different types of trusts available, each with their own unique features and benefits. In this blog post, we will explore some of the most common types of trusts used in estate planning.

  1. Revocable Living Trusts: A Revocable Living Trust is a trust that can be amended or revoked by the grantor (the person who creates the trust) during their lifetime. This type of trust is often used to avoid probate, as the assets placed in the trust are not considered part of the grantor's estate upon their death. This also allows for more privacy than probate court, where records are public. Revocable living trusts also can have a "successor trustee" named who will take over managing the trust assets if the grantor becomes incapacitated before death.

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The Benefits of Using a Lawyer for a House Purchase

When it comes to buying a house, hiring a lawyer can be an essential step in the process. A lawyer can help to ensure that the purchase goes smoothly and that your rights and interests are protected. Here are some of the key ways in which a lawyer can assist you when buying a house.

One of the most important things a lawyer can do when buying a house is to review and explain the purchase contract to you. The purchase contract is a legal document that outlines the terms and conditions of the sale, including the purchase price, closing date, and any contingencies or contingencies. A lawyer can help you to understand the legal implications of the contract and can advise you on any issues or concerns that may arise. They can also negotiate any terms or clauses of the contract to better suit your interests, such as including a clause to protect you if any major issues with the house are discovered before closing.

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Problems with Going Through the Probate Process without a Lawyer

Probate is the legal process of distributing a deceased person's assets to their heirs or beneficiaries. This process can be complex and time-consuming, and it is often recommended that individuals seek the assistance of a lawyer. However, some people choose to go through the probate process without a lawyer, a process known as "pro se" probate.

Pro se probate can be tempting, as it can save you the cost of hiring a lawyer. However, it is important to keep in mind that probate is a legal process, and without the guidance of a lawyer, it can be easy to make mistakes that can lead to delays, added expenses, and even legal disputes.

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What Happens to Real Estate in Probate in Washington State?

When a person dies, their assets must go through the probate process before they can be distributed to their heirs or beneficiaries. This process can be complicated and time-consuming, particularly when it comes to real estate. In Washington State, the probate process for real estate can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case.

Generally, when a person dies and leaves behind real estate, the property will pass through probate court. The court will appoint an executor to oversee the administration of the estate, and that person will be responsible for managing the property during the probate process.

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Should I Pay Off IRS Taxes With a Credit Card?

Paying taxes with a credit card may seem like an easy way to resolve your tax debt, but there are several factors to consider before making this decision.

One of the main benefits of paying taxes with a credit card is that it can help you resolve your tax debt quickly. By using a credit card, you can make a payment to the IRS right away and avoid any potential penalties or interest charges that may accrue if you are unable to pay your taxes on time. Additionally, many credit card companies offer rewards or cash back for using the card, which could help you earn some extra money while paying off your tax debt.

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What is an IRS Offer in Compromise (OIC)?

An Offer in Compromise (OIC) is a program administered by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that allows taxpayers to settle their tax debt for less than the full amount they owe. The program is designed to provide a way for taxpayers who are unable to pay their tax debt in full to resolve their tax problems and become compliant with their tax obligations.

To qualify for an OIC, a taxpayer must demonstrate that they are unable to pay their tax debt in full, and that the amount offered in compromise is the most the IRS can expect to collect within a reasonable period of time. The IRS will consider a taxpayer's income, expenses and assets when determining their eligibility for an OIC.

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