Benchmark Title Company, LLC


I.D. Theft

John Howe

I.D. Theft

Have you ever gotten an e-mail that says something to the effect that the four major credit bureaus will be allowed to release credit info, mailing addresses, phone numbers, etc. to ANYONE who requests it.

Was this forwarded to you from a friend with a suggestion to dial a toll free number to opt out of this information sharing free for all, and to e-mail to all your friends, and a comment to the effect that they have “tried it and it works”.

What is wrong with this e-mail?

To begin, the credit bureaus do not and will not release your information to “anyone who requests it” The person requesting this information must have a legitimate reason for requesting it as defined in the “Fair Credit Reporting Act”.  Typically you must either initiate a transaction with the business requesting the information, or give it express permission to pull your report.

Generally the toll free number is a real “Opt-Out” service, but not what you may be expecting. It normally is an opt out service for credit card solicitations, which simply removes your name from a marketing list that is sold to credit card lenders.

Any account you open with any financial institution, bank, or lender must give you information about who they share their information with and give you the option to prevent having some of your personal information shared or sold.

Read the fine print, let the company know that you do not want your information shared or sold. You may need to fill out a form, but they don’t make it easy. Generally there is no self-addressed stamped envelope. You have to do all the work yourself.

One other thing, avoid using a debit card in restaurants if at all possible. It is one of the easiest ways for any unscrupulous individual to copy your number, or run it through a device that copies all the info from the magnetic strip and soon your bank account may begin to be depleted. Another reason to review your account regularly. With a credit card, the most you can be held liable for in most cases is $50.00. There is no limit with a debit card. Check with your bank to see what their policy is in that regard, some may have limits, but it is likely your responsibility to catch the problem within a set number of days.

Any questions can be directed to Benchmark Title at 618-239-3750. Please feel free to call or email:  

John Howe

Doreen Miller, Esq.
Vice President and General Counsel

Michelle Null
VP Escrow Operations

Bethany Bond
Marketing Director

Serving you from three convenient locations:

Main Office:
1124 Hartman Lane
Shiloh, IL 62221
Ph: 618-239-3750
Escrow Fax: 618-239-3707
Title Fax: 618-239-3757
Fax Orders: 618-310-1589
President: John Howe

318 North Main St.
Columbia, IL 62236
Ph: 618-281-9700
Fax: 618-281-9705
Manager: Randi Schur

4215 S. State Rte 159
Glen Carbon, IL 62034
Ph: 618-288-1695
Fax: 618-288-1852
Manager: Sara Sowell

Dates to Remember

December 26, 2007- Benchmark Title welcomed 2 new additions. Michele Schuetz (Rodney) from our Columbia office had twin girls, Miley and Paige, both doing great and already at home.

February 22, 2008 - RPAC Trivia Night at 7 p.m. at Bel-Air Bowl. Contact RASI for more information.

February 27, 2008 -  Realtor Business After Hours at Cutter's in Belleville @ 5:30 p.m. No RSVP required.

March 6, 2008 - Benchmark Title Commercial Reception.  Details to come.

March 15, 2008 - RASI Awards Banquet.

Did you say free?

Be the first in your office to try out, Benchmark Title's new FREE online transaction management system. Why waste time making status phone calls or standing by the fax waiting for your title commitment when you can get what you need instantly from your own computer. Visit for more information or call April Tolan, our SureClose Specialist, at 618-239-3750 for your sign-on so you can start saving yourself time and money today. We'll even give you and your clients a free CD at closing containing copies of their closing documents.

Give me my policy!

Did you know that lenders and home buyers now receive their title policies at the closing table? Contact Michelle Null, VP Escrow Operations, to learn more about this exciting new program.

Ready to refi?

Lenders and homeowners will want to hear about our fantastically low new refinance rates. Contact us today for a quote!

Why wait?

You can place your next title order now by clicking here.

Customer Feedback Line

After your closing please call our customer feedback line at (618)310-1307 ext. 26 and leave your comments. We will send you a token of our appreciation for your time.



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