Frequently Asked Questions

Is my survey on record? or How do I record my survey?

Beginning in April of 1987, Utah Law required that all surveys be filed in the County Surveyor's Office. Your survey should be on file if it was performed by a licensed surveyor.

 

The word "record" is a loose term used by the Surveyor's Office to describe the act of filing a survey with our office. Surveys on file with the surveyor's office DO NOT automatically update or change your recorded legal decription or legal acreage. Please see Recorder's Office to make an official recordering.

 

Effective 5/10/2016
17-23-17.  Map of boundary survey -- Procedure for filing -- Contents -- Marking of monuments -- Record of corner changes -- Penalties.

(1) As used in this section:
(a) "Land surveyor" means a surveyor who is licensed to practice land surveying in this state in accordance with Title 58, Chapter 22, Professional Engineers and Professional Land Surveyors Licensing Act.
(b)
(i) "Township" means a term used in the context of identifying a geographic area in common surveyor practice.
(ii) "Township" does not mean a metro township as that term is defined in Section 10-2a-403.

(2)
(a)
(i) Each land surveyor making a boundary survey of lands within this state to establish or reestablish a boundary line or to obtain data for constructing a map or plat showing a boundary line shall file a map of the survey that meets the requirements of this section with the county surveyor or designated office within 90 days of the establishment or reestablishment of a boundary.
(ii) A land surveyor who fails to file a map of the survey as required by Subsection (2)(a)(i) is guilty of an infraction.
(iii) Each failure to file a map of the survey as required by Subsection (2)(a)(i) is a separate violation.
(b) The county surveyor or designated office shall file and index the map of the survey.
(c) The map shall be a public record in the office of the county surveyor or designated office.

(3) This type of map shall show:
(a) the location of survey by quarter section and township and range;
(b) the date of survey;
(c) the scale of drawing and north point;
(d) the distance and course of all lines traced or established, giving the basis of bearing and the distance and course to two or more section corners or quarter corners, including township and range, or to identified monuments within a recorded subdivision;
(e) all measured bearings, angles, and distances separately indicated from those of record;
(f) a written boundary description of property surveyed;
(g) all monuments set and their relation to older monuments found;
(h) a detailed description of monuments found and monuments set, indicated separately;
(i) the surveyor's seal or stamp; and
(j) the surveyor's business name and address.

(4)
(a) The map shall contain a written narrative that explains and identifies:
(i) the purpose of the survey;
(ii) the basis on which the lines were established; and
(iii) the found monuments and deed elements that controlled the established or reestablished lines.
(b) If the narrative is a separate document, it shall contain:
(i) the location of the survey by quarter section and by township and range;
(ii) the date of the survey;
(iii) the surveyor's stamp or seal; and
(iv) the surveyor's business name and address.
(c) The map and narrative shall be referenced to each other if they are separate documents.

(5) The map and narrative shall be created on material of a permanent nature on stable base reproducible material in the sizes required by the county surveyor.

(6)
(a) Any monument set by a licensed professional land surveyor to mark or reference a point on a property or land line shall be durably and visibly marked or tagged with the registered business name or the letters "L.S." followed by the registration number of the surveyor in charge.
(b) If the monument is set by a licensed land surveyor who is a public officer, it shall be marked with the official title of the office.

(7)
(a) If, in the performance of a survey, a surveyor finds or makes any changes to the section corner or quarter-section corner, or their accessories, the surveyor shall complete and submit to the county surveyor or designated office a record of the changes made.
(b) The record shall be submitted within 45 days of the corner visits and shall include the surveyor's seal, business name, and address.

(8) The Utah State Board of Engineers and Land Surveyors Examiners may revoke the license of any land surveyor who fails to comply with the requirements of this section, according to the procedures set forth in Title 58, Chapter 1, Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing Act.

(9) Each federal or state agency, board, or commission, local district, special service district, or municipal corporation that makes a boundary survey of lands within this state shall comply with this section.

 

Are section corner files filed with the Surveyor's Office?

Yes. Corner files also know as tie sheets are filed with the Surveyor's Office and made available from the Survey and Section Corner Viewer. See Utah State Code Below for more information.


Effective 5/12/2015

17-23-17.5.  Corner perpetuation and filing -- Definitions -- Establishment of corner file -- Preservation of map records -- Filing fees -- Exemptions.
(1) As used in this section:
(a) "Accessory to a corner" means any exclusively identifiable physical object whose spatial relationship to the corner is recorded. Accessories may be bearing trees, bearing objects, monuments, reference monuments, line trees, pits, mounds, charcoal-filled bottles, steel or wooden stakes, or other objects.
(b) "Corner," unless otherwise qualified, means a property corner, a property controlling corner, a public land survey corner, or any combination of these.
(c) "Geographic coordinates" means mathematical values that designate a position on the earth relative to a given reference system. Coordinates shall be established pursuant to Title 57, Chapter 10, Utah Coordinate System.
(d) "Land surveyor" means a surveyor who is licensed to practice land surveying in this state in accordance with Title 58, Chapter 22, Professional Engineers and Professional Land Surveyors Licensing Act.
(e) "Monument" means an accessory that is presumed to occupy the exact position of a corner.
(f) "Property controlling corner" means a public land survey corner or any property corner which does not lie on a property line of the property in question, but which controls the location of one or more of the property corners of the property in question.
(g) "Property corner" means a geographic point of known geographic coordinates on the surface of the earth, and is on, a part of, and controls a property line.
(h) "Public land survey corner" means any corner actually established and monumented in an original survey or resurvey used as a basis of legal descriptions for issuing a patent for the land to a private person from the United States government.
(i) "Reference monument" means a special monument that does not occupy the same geographical position as the corner itself, but whose spatial relationship to the corner is recorded and which serves to witness the corner.
(j)
(i) "Township" means a term used in the context of identifying a geographic area in common surveyor practice.
(ii) "Township" does not mean a metro township as that term is defined in Section 10-2a-403.
(2)
(a) Any land surveyor making a boundary survey of lands within this state and utilizing a corner shall, within 90 days, complete, sign, and file with the county surveyor of the county where the corner is situated, a written record to be known as a corner file for every public land survey corner and accessory to the corner which is used as control in any survey by the surveyor, unless the corner and its accessories are already a matter of record in the county.
(b) Where reasonably possible, the corner file shall include the geographic coordinates of the corner.
(c) A surveyor may file a corner record as to any property corner, reference monument, or accessory to a corner.
(d) Corner records may be filed concerning corners used before the effective date of this section.
(3) The county surveyor of the county containing the corners shall have on record as part of the official files maps of each township within the county, the bearings and lengths of the connecting lines to government corners, and government corners looked for and not found.
(4) The county surveyor shall make these records available for public inspection at the county facilities during normal business hours.
(5) Filing fees for corner records shall be established by the county legislative body consistent with existing fees for similar services. All corners, monuments, and their accessories used prior to the effective date of this section shall be accepted and filed with the county surveyor without requiring the payment of the fees.
(6) When a corner record of a public land survey corner is required to be filed under the provisions of this section and the monument needs to be reconstructed or rehabilitated, the land surveyor shall contact the county surveyor in accordance with Section 17-23-14.
(7) A corner record may not be filed unless it is signed by a land surveyor.
(8) All filings relative to official cadastral surveys of the Bureau of Land Management of the United States of America performed by authorized personnel shall be exempt from filing fees.

 

My survey is on file with the Surveyor's Office, however my parcel boundary lines haven't change on the GIS parcel viewer?

Your survey is indeed on file and will show up in the Survey and Section Corner Viewer. However any changes the survey made to parcel boundary lines that differ from your original legal description, need to be address with the County Recorder. Surveys on file with the Surveyor's Office DO NOT automatically update or change your recorded legal decription or legal acreage. Please see Recorder's Office. If the survey is retracing your current legal boundary we will make every effort to adjust parcel boundary lines to match.

 

Where can I get a copy of my property description?

Your yearly tax notice will provide you with the book and page number of your recorded deed. A copy can be obtained from the Treasure's Office. Your tax notice has an abbreviated property description which must be compared to your recorded document.

 

Who can perform a survey?

All 50 states have laws requiring a Professional Land Surveyor (PLS) to assume legal responsibility of a land survey. A PLS must be licensed in the state where he/she is performing the land survey. Land Surveyors in Utah must be licensed, according to Utah State Code 17-23-1. The Professional Licensed Surveyor is a highly specialized individual, whose education, experience, and competence have been formally examined and licensed by the State Of Utah. Their conduct and the quality of their work are subject to a defined code of ethics. Visit the DOPL website for more information.

 

Can an engineer perform a survey?

NO. An engineer cannot perform boundary survey work unless he/she is also licensed as a land surveyor (LS).

 

Can a contractor perform a survey?

NO. A contractor cannot perform boundary survey work unless he/she is also licensed as a land surveyor (LS).

 

How do I locate a licensed land surveyor?

Recommendations by attorneys, real estate companies, and title companies are good sources. You may contact the Utah Council of Land Surveyor's, or check the classified section of the telephone directory under "Surveyors-Land".

 

Is a survey required by State Law when property is sold?

NO. Utah State Law does not require a survey to convey property.

 

Can the surveyor provide proof of ownership?

NO. Surveyors do not prove ownership, but make a professional judgement of what the records and facts indicate your ownership to be. The surveyor acts as a fact finder and assists the legal profession in making the final judgement of ownership.