Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 17.1. Courts of Record
Chapter 2. Clerks, Clerks' Offices and Records

§ 17.1-223. Duty of clerk to record writings, etc., and make index.

A. Every writing authorized by law to be recorded, with all certificates, plats, schedules or other papers thereto annexed or thereon endorsed, upon payment of fees for the same and the tax thereon, if any, shall, when admitted to record, be recorded by or under the direction of the clerk on such media as are prescribed by § 17.1-239. However, unless a cover sheet is submitted with the writing in accordance with § 17.1-227.1, the clerk has the authority to reject any writing for recordation unless (i) as to any individual who is a party to such writing, the surname only of such individual is underscored or written entirely in capital letters in the first clause of the writing that identifies the names of the parties; (ii) each page of the writing is numbered consecutively; (iii) in the case of a writing described in § 58.1-801 or 58.1-807, the amount of the consideration and the actual value of the property conveyed is stated on the first page of the writing; (iv) the laws of the United States or the Commonwealth under which any exemption from recordation taxes is claimed is clearly stated on the face of the writing; and (v) the name of each party to such writing under whose name the writing is to be indexed as grantor, grantee, or both is listed in the first clause of the writing that identifies the names of the parties and identified therein as grantor, grantee, or both, as applicable. Such writing, once recorded, may be returned to any party to such writing who is identified therein as a grantee unless otherwise indicated clearly on the face of the writing, or any cover sheet, including an appropriate current address to which such writing shall be returned.

B. The attorney or party who prepares the writing for recordation shall ensure that the writing satisfies the requirements of subsection A and that (i) the social security number is removed from the writing prior to the instrument being submitted for recordation, (ii) a deed conveying residential property containing not more than four residential dwelling units states on the first page of the document the name of the title insurance underwriter insuring such instrument or a statement that the existence of title insurance is unknown to the preparer, and (iii) a deed conveying residential property containing not more than four residential dwelling units states on the first page of the document that it was prepared by the owner of the real property or by an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth where such statement by an attorney shall include the name and Virginia State Bar number of the attorney who prepared the deed, provided, however, that clause (iii) shall not apply to deeds of trust or to deeds in which a public service company, railroad, or cable system operator is either a grantor or grantee, and it shall be sufficient for the purposes of clause (iii) that deeds prepared under the supervision of the Office of the Attorney General of Virginia so state without the name of an attorney or bar number.

C. If the clerk has an eRecording System as defined in § 55.1-661, the clerk shall follow the provisions of this section, and the Uniform Real Property Electronic Recording Act (§ 55.1-661 et seq.), for recordation of documents. If the clerk does not have an eRecording System, the clerk shall record a legible paper copy of an electronic document, provided that such copy (i) otherwise meets the requirements of this section for recordation and (ii) is certified to be a true and correct copy of the electronic original by the attorney, settlement agent, or other party who submits the document for recordation. If a clerk's eRecording System is not operational at any time, or the eRecording System does not accept the type of electronic document being submitted, such clerk shall use the process for recording a legible paper copy of an electronic copy as set out herein. An affidavit under this section may be made in the following form, or to the same effect:

Affidavit of Submitter

The undersigned affiant, being first duly sworn, deposes and states as follows, prepared pursuant to § 17.1-223 of the Code of Virginia, that the attached electronic document is a true and correct copy of the electronic original.

(Name of submitter) ________________

(Signature of submitter) ________________

(Address of submitter) ________________

(Telephone of submitter) ________________

(Email of submitter) ________________

The foregoing affidavit was acknowledged before me this ________ day of ________, 20__, by

Notary public: ________________

My commission expires: ________________.

Notary Registration Number: ________________.

D. A writing that appears on its face to have been properly notarized in accordance with the Virginia Notary Act (§ 47.1-1 et seq.) shall be presumed to have been notarized properly and shall be recorded by the clerk, if such document otherwise meets the requirements of this section for recordation.

E. If the writing is accepted for recordation in the deed books, it shall be deemed to be validly recorded for all purposes. Such books shall be indexed by the clerk as provided by § 17.1-249 and carefully preserved. Upon admitting any such writing or other paper to record, the clerk shall endorse thereon the day and time of day of such recordation. More than one book may be used contemporaneously under the direction of the clerk for the recordation of the writings mentioned in this section whenever it may be necessary to use more than one book for the proper conduct of the business of the clerk's office.

Code 1919, § 3392, § 17-59; 1926, p. 465; 1934, p. 514; 1979, c. 527; 1983, c. 293; 1985, c. 246; 1986, c. 167; 1990, c. 374; 1996, c. 454; 1998, c. 872; 2004, c. 336; 2007, c. 451; 2008, cc. 117, 814, 823, 833; 2012, c. 74; 2013, c. 193; 2014, c. 338; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 78.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.