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Recording Requirements

Each document presented for recording MUST include or comply with the following general requirements:

  • The property must be located in Riverside County. (CC 1169)
  • The document must be authorized or required by law to be recorded. (GC 27201)
  • The document must be submitted with the proper fees and taxes. (GC 6103, 27201, 27261)
  • The document must be in compliance with state and local laws.
  • The document should name the person requesting recording. (GC 27361.6)
  • The document should state the name and address to whom the document should be returned. Fill in "Recording Requested By and Mail To". (GC 27361.6)
  • The entire document, including the notary seal, must be legible enough to produce a readable photographic record. (GC 27201, 27361.6, 27361.7, GC 8207)
  • Signatures must be original unless the document is a certified copy issued by the appropriate custodian of the public record. (GC 27201b)
  • The document must be properly acknowledged, unless exempt. (California requires an all-purpose acknowledgment). (GC 27201, 27289, 27285, 27287, 27288, CC 1189)
  • The Assessor's Parcel Number and Tax Rate Area are required on all conveyances by local Ordinance (R&T Code 11911.1)
  • Unless otherwise required to do so by a state or Federal law, a document shall not be presented for recording if it displays more than the last four digits of a social security number. (CC 1798.89)

                    * CC - Civil Code, GC - Government Code, R&T - Revenue and Taxation Code

Documentary Transfer Tax

Documentary Transfer Tax is due on all taxable conveyances in excess of $100 at a rate of $.55 per $500 or fractional portion of real property value, excluding any liens or encumbrances already of record. Property located within the city of Riverside is taxable at a rate of $1.10 per $500 or fractional portion of real property value, excluding any liens or encumbrances already of record (R&T Code 11911). Transfer tax is collected at the time of recording. A Documentary Transfer Tax Declaration must be completed for all conveyances. If no Documentary Transfer Tax is due, so indicate by entering "0" on the tax line, and provide a valid reason for exemption.

A Documentary Transfer Tax Affidavit will be required to be completed and submitted with each document when Documentary Transfer Tax is being paid or when an exemption is being claimed from paying the tax.  If a governmental agency is a party to the document, the form will not be required.  Documentary Transfer Tax Affidavits are also available at all Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder branch offices, or will be mailed to you upon request by calling (951) 486-7000. 

Click here for information on Documentary Transfer Tax for unrecorded transactions.

Note: If you do not have to pay Documentary Transfer Tax, you may have to pay a new state fee of up to $225 starting Jan. 1, 2018. Click here to learn more.

Preliminary Change of Ownership Report

A Preliminary Change of Ownership Report  is required by State law to be filed for all property transfers.  A $20.00 fee will be charged if the completed form is not filed at the time of recording.  If the form is not filed, the Assessor is then required to mail to the property owner a further request for the same information.  This form is used to assist in the appraisal of the property and is not open for public inspection.  Preliminary Change of Ownership Forms are also available at all Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder branch offices, or will be mailed to you upon request by calling (951) 955-6200.


Re-Recording Requirements

When making corrections to previously recorded documents.  Click here to view the requirements.

Recorder Sample Documents

The "Recorder Sample Documents" below is a partial list of commonly used recording forms and a description of each. The descriptions are general and are not intended to be complete legal definitions. The forms are provided on this web site as a courtesy and as a public service for your convenience. We make no representation as to their suitability for your purposes. Other forms may be obtained from attorneys, real estate professionals, stationery or office supply stores or from other legal forms web sites. Our employees are precluded from providing legal advice and they cannot assist the public in the preparation of legal documents. If you have questions concerning which document form is appropriate for your transaction, or if you are in need of assistance in the preparation of that document, you should consult an attorney or obtain other professional advice.  Click here for descriptions of the documents below.