Getting necessary documents from your local courthouse often forces you to take the day off work and lose valuable time sitting in the waiting room. With a 25-year background in real estate title abstracting, Fee Favor CEO Jeff Edrington saw a need for more efficient courthouse document retrieval.
“In a lot of cases, in 95 percent of Georgia, those documents aren’t available to view online. You have to go to the courthouse even though they are public documents,” says Edrington. “This software helps these offices get through requests quicker.”
He’s kicked off his service in Georgia, which contains 159 counties, each with a probate court and a superior court clerk’s office — that’s where all of your public documents get filed; for example, divorce certificates, property deeds, name change documents, and others.
Instead of hiring an attorney or spending your day off at the courthouse, you can jump on Fee Favor’s platform, pay for your documents with a credit card, and have your documents scanned to you within a day. If you need original copies, you can also order them through the secure platform.
“Their usual response would be mail us a check via snail mail and we will get this back to you in 5-6 business days after we receive your request,” says Edrington.
The platform saves time on both sides as the clerks aren’t constantly stopping their workflow to attend to customers on-site and instead can refer to a dashboard for document requests. At no cost, all they have to do is add a link to their website, then customers can easily request public records from their home or workplace without wasting a day.
“Our security issues are very minimal because all of the documents are public records. These aren’t private documents,” says Edrington.
Better yet, in the state of Georgia, the clerk can only charge 50 cents a copy per physical document. With online records, the clerk can request up to $2.50 for the first copy and $1 thereafter — earning more money for the office and simultaneously providing greater customer satisfaction, according to Edrington.
Fee Favor recently signed a six-figure annual contract with a superior court clerk office at one of the five largest counties in Georgia to continue their product validation.
The Athens-based startup’s future plan for revenue also adds a flat fee to the customer’s transaction.
After going through the ATDC incubator’s Idea Accelerator and running through the pitch competition circuit, Edrington and his team are ready to raise seed capital with their full product in line to launch later this year across their home state.
“The cool thing is — you have the choice as the consumer,” says Edrington. “It’s not like you have to use the service. You can still go down there and make the copies. But if you don’t want to drive two hours back and forth, you can pay our flat fee plus the price of the copy versus paying a lawyer $200 at $100/hour.”