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When is a Record of Survey Needed?

Land Surveyors are issued licenses and are governed by the statues of the State of California.  The primary statute being the Professional Land Surveyors Act beginning at code section 8700 of the Business and Professions Code.  The requirements for a Record of Survey and the information required to be shown on a Record of survey are covered starting at code section 8762 through 8774.5.  The state codes require that if a Land Surveyor establishes a property line either the property line must already be shown on an official map or a map that is recorded at the County Recorder’s Office or the Land Surveyor must process and file a Record of Survey Map at the County Recorder’s Office.  Many people confuse the Assessor’s Map with a recorded map.  The Assessors Map is not a recorded map and does not relieve the obligation to file a Record of Survey.  The state codes also require that you file a Record of Survey Map any time you discover a material discrepancy with existing monuments of record or other information that might lead to an alternate location of the property line.  There are also requirements that any monument set must be durable and be marked with the license number of the Land Surveyor that set the monument.  These requirements to file a Record of Survey are often misunderstood.  Any Land Surveyor who does not file a Record of Survey when required is subject to disciplinary action by the State Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors.  This can include fines, reeducation requirements, temporary or permanent loss of his/her land surveying license and even jail time.

This Record of Survey Map must meet certain technical requirements as defined in Code Section 8764.  In general the map will show the monuments recovered in the field, the position of those monuments and how they relate to the record deed descriptions or other maps in the area, and how the Land Surveyor determined where the property boundary is located. The client can request that other items be shown and the additional cost would be negotiated prior to starting the project.  The client also needs to provide the Land Surveyor with the current deed for the property and in most cases a current preliminary Title Report is required to insure that the boundaries being surveyed are the current boundaries of the parcel.  The Record of Survey Map must be processed through the County Surveyor’s office.  There is a fee for this review that ranges from $0.00 to over $1000.00 depending on which County the property is located.  Any work done by a land surveyor requires a contract to be executed with the client.