As we continue the FCS Greatest Hits blog series, we want to zero in on a specific benefit resulting from conducting UCC searches with enhanced search logic (i.e., not strict or certified searches) through a proprietary UCC search system—finding name variations. Learn how to cast a wide net and then whittle your search down to only the relevant results.
Maximize UCC and Lien Search Results to Minimize Risk
When conducting UCC and lien searches as part of a prefunding due diligence investigation it is a good idea to maximize your results in order to minimize your risk. This strategy helps uncover hidden liens and those filed under critical name variations. To accomplish this, you will want to cast a wide net to bring in as many potential hits as possible and then whittle them down to only those that are pertinent to your transaction.
Online search systems are a great tool for maximizing results. Proprietary search systems and even some state websites incorporate broad based searching features such as wildcard characters and truncated name searching that help reveal name variations. By using these features, searchers can draw like names onto a single search report, for a single fee, and then review them in more detail to determine if they are items of interest.
See our previous blog post “Broad Based Name Searching? What is it? Why is it Important?? for more information on the power of broad based name searching.
Not all searches can be performed online; sometimes you will need to place your search request with a private service company who has access to the filing office records. Although the search is out of your hands in these situations, there are still ways you can maximize your results. One of the best ways to do this is to thoroughly vet your provider before placing your request. Some service companies focus on name variations and maximizing results while others do not make this a priority. Make sure you communicate to your vendor that you are looking for similar names to be included in results.
Lastly, when ordering searches from a search company, be mindful of what special search instructions you include with your request. Asking a service company to limit results to a certain address, for example, will limit the scope of the results that they return to you.