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Velox.re and Chicago’s Cook County partner to test blockchain for property title transfer

Real estate technology startup Velox.re has involved in an exclusive partnership with Chicago’s Cook County Recorder to test blockchain uses for transferring and tracking property titles and other public records.

According to the reports by bitcoin magazine, apart from Velox.re and the Cook County Recorder’s Office, the closed pilot project will involve participation from the International Blockchain Real Estate Association (IBREA), Armour Settlement Services, and global law firm Hogan Lovells. The project was announced during the MIPIM PropTech Summit, which is part of New York City Real Estate Tech Week 2016 by Ragnar Lifthrasir, founder and CEO of Velox.re.

"Real estate blockchain initiatives in other countries have used a private blockchain as an improved database of some existing land records. This was a great first step,” Lifthrasir told Bitcoin Magazine. “Our pilot program takes things further. Velox.re is using blockchain to actually convey property and register liens. We're performing high-value transactions on the blockchain. Cook County will enter these into the government public record. This is the first time this has been done in the U.S. or [anywhere else in] the world."

The Cook County Recorder’s Office will be testing applications of blockchain for filing liens, prevention of fraudulent use, conveyances of vacant property in Chicago and compatibility between a blockchain and traditional server-based setup. In order to test the various use cases, Velox.re’s own implementation of the open assets protocol will be used.

“We are excited to partner with a group that is actually interested in how this technology can work in real world situations. A blockchain-based public record is where you would start if you were to create a public land record from scratch, and that’s why I’m so interested in seeing this take a foothold in the United States,” John Mirkovic, Deputy Recorder of Deeds for Communication and IT said as reported by Bitcoin Magazine.

The Cook County Recorder’s office has pointed out three aspects of blockchain technology that makes it a viable option for its activities. The aspects include a permanent, immutable public record; a path towards paperless land transfers and ‘e-deeds’; and reduced costs for offices across the country that plans to upgrade electronic document processing systems.

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