Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

CHAPTER 386. County recorder; abstracter

Table of Sections
SectionHeadnote
386.001Name change.
386.01Bond.
386.015Salaries, fees, budget; counties under 75,000; appeals.
386.02Delivery to successor.
386.03Reception books.
386.04Numerical register and reception book.
386.05Tract index books.
386.06Tract index books; contracts for making.
386.07Tract index for Torrens titles; Hennepin, Ramsey Counties.
386.071Documents misfiled.
386.08Preparation.
386.09Payment for from revenue fund.
386.10Repealed, 1961 c 561 s 17
386.11Repealed, 1961 c 561 s 17
386.12Repealed, 1961 c 561 s 17
386.13Transcribing records of state lands.
386.14Records as prima facie evidence.
386.15Tract indexes transcribed.
386.16County recorder to supervise; compensation.
386.17To exhibit records.
386.18Abstracter; bond.
386.183Official abstract certificate; entry; fees.
386.19Record books, indexes.
386.20Certificates of discharge from U.S. service.
386.21Renumbered 386.20, subd 2
386.22Renumbered 386.20, subd 3
386.23Pre-1862 sheriff's certificates, transcribing.
386.24Renumbered 386.23, subd 2
386.25Renumbered 386.23, subd 3
386.26Some unrecorded records: transcribe old; record new.
386.27Renumbered 386.26, subd 2
386.28Renumbered 386.26, subd 3
386.29Transcribing abstract records.
386.30Deeds recorded within 30 days.
386.31Consecutive numbering.
386.32Consecutive index.
386.33Deputies.
386.34Deputies, salaries.
386.35Repealed, 1965 c 291 s 12
386.36Farm names recorded.
386.37Abstracts of title.
386.375Transfer and storage of abstracts.
386.38Repealed, 1945 c 561 s 9
386.39Instruments not properly executed.
386.40Seal.
386.409County recorder's official signature.
386.41Certificate of record.
386.42Repealed, 1986 c 322 s 4
386.43Repealed, 1985 c 233 s 12
386.44Oaths and papers, where filed.
386.45Bankruptcy documents may be recorded, used as evidence.
386.459Official records; compilation, maintenance, and storage of information.
386.46Disposal of obsolete records.
386.47Obsolete records, destruction.
386.51May record U.S. agency maps, plats, surveys, photos.
386.52Certificate of authentication.
386.53Fees.
386.61Definitions.
386.62License.
386.63Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146
386.64Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146
386.65Examination of applicants for license.
386.66Bond or abstracter's liability insurance policy.
386.67Licensed abstracter, seal.
386.68Fees.
386.69Licenses.
386.695Repealed, 1976 c 222 s 209
386.696Repealed, 1976 c 222 s 209
386.70Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146
386.705Administrative actions and penalties.
386.706Rules.
386.71Licensed abstracters, access to public records.
386.72Abstracter's certificate as prima facie evidence.
386.73County recorders, may employ licensed abstracters.
386.74Rights of county recorders not abridged.
386.75Practice of attorneys not abridged.
386.76Violation a misdemeanor.
386.77Filing fee for state, city, town item may be billed.
386.78Security deposits.

386.001 Name change.

The name of the register of deeds and office of register of deeds is changed to county recorder and office of county recorder respectively.

HIST: 1976 c 181 s 1

386.01 Bond.

Every county recorder, before entering upon the duties of office, shall give bond to the state in the penal sum of $5,000, to be approved by the county board, conditioned that the recorder will faithfully and impartially fulfill the duties of office. The bond and an oath of office shall be filed for record with the court administrator of the district court.

HIST: (873) RL s 531; 1973 c 524 s 4; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444; 1Sp1986 c 3 art 1 s 82

386.015 Salaries, fees, budget; counties under 75,000; appeals.

Subdivision 1. Minimum salaries. The county recorder in all counties of the state with less than 75,000 inhabitants according to the 1960 federal census shall receive as full compensation for services rendered by them as county recorder and registrar of titles for their respective counties annual salaries not less than the following amounts based on the population according to the then last preceding federal census:

(1) in counties with less than 10,000 inhabitants, $6,000;

(2) in counties with 10,000 but less than 20,000 inhabitants, $6,500;

(3) in counties with 20,000 but less than 30,000 inhabitants, $7,000;

(4) in counties with 30,000 but less than 40,000 inhabitants, $7,500;

(5) in counties with 40,000 or more inhabitants, $8,000.

Subd. 2. Board's salary procedure. (a) The county board of each of the counties specified in subdivision 1 annually shall set by resolution the salary of the county recorder which shall be paid to the county recorder at such intervals as the board shall determine but not less often than once each month.

(b) At the January meeting prior to the first date on which applicants may file for the office of county recorder the board shall set by resolution the minimum salary to be paid county recorder for the term next following.

(c) In the event a vacancy occurs in the office of the county recorder the board may set the annual salary for the remainder of the calendar year at an amount less than was set for that year.

(d) The board in any case specified in this subdivision may not set the annual salary at an amount less than the minimum provided in subdivision 1 but it may set the salary in excess of such minimums.

(e) The salary of the county recorder shall not be reduced during the term for which the recorder is elected or appointed.

(f) In the event that duties are assigned to the county recorder which are in addition to duties as county recorder, additional compensation may be provided for the additional duties. The county board by resolution shall determine the additional compensation which shall be paid and specify the duties for which the additional compensation is to be paid.

Subd. 3. Repealed, 1975 c 301 s 16

Subd. 4. Other salary laws. This section shall not be construed as repealing any existing law which provides for a higher minimum salary in any county than the amount provided in subdivision 1, but shall be deemed to supersede the provisions of any act setting a maximum salary for the county recorder in any of the counties specified in subdivision 1.

Subd. 5. Public and private fees. The county recorder shall charge and collect all fees as prescribed by law and all such fees collected as county recorder shall be paid to the county in the manner and at the time prescribed by the county board, but not less often than once each month. This subdivision shall apply to the fees collected by the county recorder in performing the duties of the registrar of titles and all such fees shall be paid to the county as herein provided except that money paid to the registrar of titles for the state general fund as provided in section 508.74, shall be paid to the county as provided in section 508.75. A county recorder may retain as personal compensation any fees the recorder is permitted to charge by law for services rendered in a private capacity as a registered abstracter as defined in section 386.61, subdivision 2, clause (2).

Subd. 6. Budget, deputies. (a) The county board by resolution shall provide the budget for:

(1) the salaries of deputies, clerks and other employees in the office of the county recorder;

(2) other expenses necessary in the performance of the duties of said office; and

(3) the payment of premiums of any bonds required of any deputy, clerk or employee in said office

and the board is authorized to appropriate funds therefor and for the salary of the county recorder.

(b) Nothing in this subdivision shall limit the right of the county recorder to appoint deputies for said office as provided in Minnesota Statutes 1961, section 386.33.

Subd. 7. Salary, budget appeals. The county recorder if dissatisfied with the action of the county board in setting the amount of the recorder's salary or the amount of the budget for the office of county recorder, may appeal to the district court on the grounds that the determination of the county board in setting such salary or budget was arbitrary, capricious, oppressive or in unreasonable disregard for the responsibilities and duties of said office, and the recorder's experience, qualifications, and performance. The appeal shall be taken within 15 days after the date of the resolution setting such salary or budget by serving a notice of appeal on the county auditor and filing same with the court administrator of the district court. The court either in term or vacation and upon ten days' notice to the chair of the board shall hear such appeal. On the hearing of the appeal the court shall review the decision or resolution of the board in like manner as though reviewed by certiorari, except new or additional evidence may be taken. The court may order the officer appealing and the board to submit briefs or other memoranda and may dispose of the appeal on such writings. If the court shall find that the board acted in an arbitrary, capricious, oppressive or unreasonable manner it shall remand the matter to the county board for further action consistent with the court's finding.

Subd. 8. When this section takes effect. The provisions of subdivisions 1 through 7 shall take effect in the respective counties specified in subdivision 1 as follows:

(1) upon the expiration of the term of the incumbent holding the office on July 1, 1965; or

(2) upon the occurrence prior thereto of a vacancy in the office of county recorder; or

(3) subsequent to July 1, 1965, and upon not less than 30 days' written notice by the county recorder, the county board shall make the provisions of subdivisions 1 to 7 effective on the first day of the month following the expiration of the notice period.

Subd. 9. Inconsistent law superseded. All laws relating to the compensation, fees and clerk hire for the register of deeds and registrar of titles if one office inconsistent herewith are superseded.

HIST: 1965 c 842 s 1,2; 1967 c 388 s 5; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1985 c 281 s 8; 1986 c 444; 1Sp1986 c 3 art 1 s 82; 1Sp1989 c 1 art 11 s 3

386.02 Delivery to successor.

At the expiration of a term of office, every recorder shall deliver promptly to the successor all books, records, papers, and other property pertaining to office and if, on application of the duly qualified successor, the recorder refuses to do so, the recorder shall forfeit and pay to the use of the county $50 for each and every day of refusal, which may be recovered in an action brought upon the recorder's official bond.

HIST: (874) RL s 532; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.03 Reception books.

Every county recorder shall keep two books, to be denominated, respectively, the grantor's and grantee's reception book, each page of which shall be divided into seven columns, in the following forms:

Date of To Whom Book Reception, Where Delivered Fees and Year, Grantor Grantee Situated after Received Page Day, Record Record- Hour ed and and Minute Kind of Instru- ment Date of To Whom Book Reception, Where Delivered Fees and Year, Grantee Grantor Situated after Received Page Day, Record Record- Hour ed and and Minute Kind of Instru- ment

The recorder shall enter in each book, in the order and manner aforesaid, as soon as the same are received, all deeds and other instruments left, and all copies left, as cautions or notices of liens, authorized by law to be recorded. The pages of each of the reception books shall be lettered in alphabetical order, a convenient number of consecutive pages being allotted to each letter of the alphabet, and every entry made therein shall be made in the grantor's reception book under the initial letter of the grantor's surname, and in the grantee's reception book under the grantee's surname, and all such entries shall appear therein consecutively and in the order as to time in which the instruments were received. The recorder shall make an entry in the record immediately after the copy of each instrument recorded specifying the time of the day, month, and year when the same was recorded.

HIST: (875) RL s 533; 1907 c 442 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.04 Numerical register and reception book.

The board of county commissioners of any county in this state wherein the recorder's office keeps a deed index and mortgage index are hereby authorized to combine the reception books required by section 386.03 and the consecutive index book required by section 386.32, the record book to be designated the Numerical Register and Reception Book, each page of which shall be divided into nine columns in the following form:

NUMERICAL REGISTER AND RECEPTION BOOK...COUNTY, MINNESOTA

Date of Reception No. of Instrument Grantor Grantee Where Situated Section Year Township Mo. Range Day A.M. P.M. To Whom Where Kind of Fees Delivered Recorded Instrument Received After Book Reception Page

The recorder shall make the entries in this book in accordance with the requirements of sections 386.03 and 386.32.

HIST: (876) 1909 c 226 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.05 Tract index books.

Every county board may procure at the expense of its county, and keep in the office of the county recorder, suitable books, substantially bound, arranged in numerical order, and so ruled that opposite to the description of each section of land or sectional lot, and town or city lot and block, shall be a blank space, of a convenient size, in which shall be entered the letters or numericals indicating the volume of the records referred to, designating deeds by the letter "D," and mortgages by the letter "M," or by using red ink for mortgages and black ink for deeds, and other records by appropriate initials or abbreviations, together with the page of the volume upon which every record affecting the title to the whole or any part thereof may be found. Such tract index shall be kept as one of the records in the office of the county recorder, and such recorder shall note therein a like minute of every instrument affecting the title to any land which shall be filed for record, to be made opposite to each parcel of land the title to which may be affected by such instrument. Instead of causing a tract index to be made, the board may purchase any existing tract index or abstracts; and thereafter the recorder shall make the appropriate entries therein. In either such case the recorder may make abstracts, for persons demanding the same.

HIST: (877) RL s 534; 1907 c 442 s 1; 1955 c 446 s 1; 1969 c 995 s 6; 1973 c 123 art 5 s 7; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.06 Tract index books; contracts for making.

The board of county commissioners of any county in the state which does not have a tract index, belonging to the county, in the office of the county recorder, of lands within the county, is hereby authorized and empowered to cause or have a tract index made, and may hire, employ, or contract with any competent person, without advertising therefor, to prepare and make such tract index.

HIST: (877-1) 1927 c 19; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1991 c 326 s 19

386.07 Tract index for Torrens titles; Hennepin, Ramsey Counties.

The county recorder in any county now having, or which may hereafter have, a population of 400,000 or over, and in which the business of the registrar of titles is conducted in a separate place from that of the county recorder, shall provide a tract index of all lands registered under what is known as the Torrens System of land titles, and the same shall be kept in the office of the county recorder in any such county for the use of receiving clerks in checking the properties listed therein with the properties described in the instruments presented for record.

HIST: (877-2) 1927 c 376 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.071 Documents misfiled.

The county recorder may reasonably rely on the affirmative representation of the party presenting instruments for filing as to whether the land described in the instruments or any part of it is registered or unregistered. A party who requests that misfiled instruments be refiled with the registrar is responsible for paying any additional fees required to properly file any instrument misfiled because of an incorrect representation and, if applicable, to enter a new certificate of title.

HIST: 1999 c 11 art 1 s 7

386.08 Preparation.

The county recorder of any such county may assign the duty of compiling such index to one or more deputies, who shall be paid for extra time so employed additional salary and compensation at the same rate and in the same manner as is paid them for regular service. The total sum for such extra service shall not exceed $1,600.

HIST: (877-3) 1927 c 376 s 2; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.09 Payment for from revenue fund.

The county auditor of any such county shall, upon request of the county recorder, issue warrants in payment for such additional service, in amounts designated by the county recorder, and the same shall be drawn on the county revenue fund.

HIST: (877-4) 1927 c 376 s 3; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.10 Repealed, 1961 c 561 s 17

386.11 Repealed, 1961 c 561 s 17

386.12 Repealed, 1961 c 561 s 17

386.13 Transcribing records of state lands.

The county commissioners of any county in this state are hereby authorized to direct the county recorder of any county containing any lands heretofore granted to the state from the United States government (except sections 16 and 36), and including all lands so granted in lieu of lands in sections 16 or 36, to transcribe from the records of the commissioner of finance lists of all such lands including reference to the laws granting the same and by all patents issued thereunder to the state, which transcripts after due examination thereof shall be certified to without charge by the commissioner of finance as being true and correct transcripts, and thereupon such transcripts, shall be recorded by the county recorder in whose county such land is situate, which recording shall be done in books to be provided therefor by the county. Such county recorder shall receive the same fees allowed by law for recording original instruments in the office, which fees shall be paid by the county auditor upon the approval of the county commissioners of said county.

HIST: (878) 1913 c 427 s 1; 1973 c 492 s 14; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.14 Records as prima facie evidence.

The record of such transcript shall be prima facie evidence of the facts therein set forth, and of the contents of the original instruments so transcribed and recorded, and a certified copy of such record shall be admissible in evidence in all the courts of this state.

HIST: (879) 1913 c 427 s 2

386.15 Tract indexes transcribed.

In counties having a population of less than 75,000 now having tract indexes of the records in the office of the county recorder, the county board is hereby authorized to have such tract indexes transcribed, compared with the original records, and checked back when the necessity therefor appears.

HIST: (880) 1905 c 51 s 1; 1911 c 337 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.16 County recorder to supervise; compensation.

The work provided for in section 386.15 shall be performed by the county recorder of the county. The county recorder, for performing the work, shall receive as compensation therefor such sum as may be fixed by the board of county commissioners not exceeding two cents for each description so transcribed, compared with the original records, and checked back.

HIST: (881) 1905 c 51 s 2; 1911 c 337 s 2; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.17 To exhibit records.

The county recorder shall exhibit free of charge, during the hours that the office is or is required by law to be open, any of the records or papers in the recorder's official custody to the inspection of any person demanding the same, either for examination, or for the purpose of making or completing an abstract or transcript therefrom; but no such person shall have the right to have or use such records for the purpose of making or completing abstracts or transcripts therefrom, so as to hinder or interfere with the recorder in the performance of official duties.

HIST: (882) RL s 535; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.18 Abstracter; bond.

The county board may, by resolution, authorize any person to use a portion of the county building for the purpose of making abstracts of title, upon the execution by such person of a bond to the state in a sum not less than $500, conditioned for the faithful performance of duties as such abstracter and that the abstracter will handle all public records with care and charge no greater fee for abstracts of title than is or may be allowed by law to county recorders for like services.

HIST: (883) RL s 536; 1973 c 524 s 5; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.183 Official abstract certificate; entry; fees.

All county abstract clerks may charge and collect for their services the following fees: for each official certificate of the clerk the sum of $1; for each proper and pertinent entry in an abstract of title or registered property report, 40 cents.

HIST: 1949 c 15 s 1

386.19 Record books, indexes.

The county recorder shall keep suitable word for word records of all instruments left with the recorder for record keeping. The recorder shall keep an alphabetical index to record, under the proper letter of the alphabet, the name of each grantor and grantee of any instrument left for record.

HIST: (884) RL s 537; 1975 c 115 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.20 Certificates of discharge from U.S. service.

Subdivision 1. Recordation. (a) Certificates of discharge from the United States Army, the United States Navy, and the United States Marine Corps and releases or transfers from active duty therein may be recorded in the office of the county recorder of any county in this state by the person to whom such discharge, release or transfer was issued without the payment of any fee to the county recorder for recording the same. Upon the request of the person having such instrument recorded, the county recorder shall not stamp, mark, or make any endorsement upon any such certificate of discharge, release or transfer, but after the recording thereof has been completed the recorder shall return the certificate of discharge, release, or transfer in the condition received.

(b) In any county where the compensation of the county recorder consists of fees only, the county recorder shall be entitled to a fee of 60 cents for recording such instrument, which shall be paid by the county upon presentation of a verified claim by the county recorder.

(c) The release of any information pertaining to military certificates of discharge is governed by section 196.08.

Subd. 2. Prima facie evidence. The record of such certificate or duly certified copy thereof shall be prima facie evidence of all the facts therein stated and received as evidence of such facts in all courts of this state.

Subd. 3. Record books. The county recorder of any county is hereby authorized and empowered to procure at the expense of the county proper record books for recording such certificates of discharge with sufficient indexes thereto.

HIST: (885, 886, 887) 1919 c 266 s 1-3; 1945 c 542 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444; 2003 c 124 s 3; 1Sp2003 c 8 art 2 s 19

386.21 Renumbered 386.20, subd 2

386.22 Renumbered 386.20, subd 3

386.23 Pre-1862 sheriff's certificates, transcribing.

Subdivision 1. Must be transcribed. The county recorder in any county is hereby authorized and directed to transcribe, in appropriate records to be provided for such purpose, all certificates now on file in the recorder's office, which were filed prior to May 10, 1862, made by sheriffs upon sales of real estate on mortgage foreclosures, judgments, and executions.

Subd. 2. Compensation. The county recorder shall receive as compensation therefor the sum of $1.75 for transcribing each of such certificates, and 25 cents each for comparing and certifying all such certificates, filed prior to May 10, 1862, and not heretofore compared and certified, to be paid out of the county funds, and shall be allowed by the board of county commissioners of such county upon the completion of the work.

Subd. 3. Prima facie; as of time filed. The recording of such certificates shall have the effect of a record of the same from time to time when they were filed in such county recorder office and shall be prima facie evidence of the facts therein set forth.

HIST: (888, 889, 890) 1905 c 329 s 3; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.24 Renumbered 386.23, subd 2

386.25 Renumbered 386.23, subd 3

386.26 Some unrecorded records: transcribe old; record new.

Subdivision 1. Counties over 100,000. The county recorder in each county having a population of over 100,000 is hereby authorized and directed to transcribe in appropriate records to be provided by the county for such purpose and to appropriately index all instruments affecting: lists of lands selected by railroad companies under grants from the United States or the state of Minnesota; and all instruments affecting: condemnation proceedings; awards of damages in condemnation proceedings; building line easements; easements for slopes; easements for electric light and telephone poles; now on file in the recorder's office and which have not heretofore been recorded.

Subd. 2. Prima facie; as of time filed. The transcribing of such instruments shall have the effect of a record of the same from the time such instruments were filed in such county recorder office, and such records shall be prima facie evidence of the facts therein set forth and of the contents of the original instruments so recorded.

Subd. 3. In future; record at length. It is hereby made the duty of the county recorder in any such county to record at length in suitable books to be provided by the county for such purpose all instruments hereafter received either for filing or recording. The recorder shall receive the same fees therefor as are allowed for the recording of other like instruments.

Subd. 4. Except Ramsey County. This section does not apply to Ramsey County.

HIST: (893) 1909 c 153 s 1-3; 1974 c 435 art 7 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.27 Renumbered 386.26, subd 2

386.28 Renumbered 386.26, subd 3

386.29 Transcribing abstract records.

The board of county commissioners of any county that has undertaken to have the abstract records in the office of the county recorder transcribed under any law fixing a maximum limit that may be expended for such purpose but is unable to complete such work on account of such limit having been reached may authorize the county recorder or employ any other competent person to complete the same under the supervision and direction of the county recorder at such salary or upon such basis of compensation as may be agreed upon; provided that, if such employment be upon a salary basis, it shall not exceed the sum of $80 per month and, if upon a per line basis, at not to exceed five cents per line.

HIST: (893-1) 1927 c 104; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.30 Deeds recorded within 30 days.

Each county recorder shall, within 30 days after any instrument entitled to record is left for that purpose, actually record the same in the manner provided by law and return the same in person or by mail to the person who left such instrument for record, if the person's residence is known, or to such other person and at such address as the recorder may be directed to deliver the same. Persistent failure to so record and return instruments entitled to record, upon demand therefor and payment of recording fees, shall constitute nonfeasance in office and be sufficient ground for removal therefrom. In a county in which the office of county recorder has been combined with another county office, the 30-day time period begins when the tax certifications required by chapters 272 and 287 are made, but the total period to complete the time period after receipt of the instrument by the office must not exceed 60 days.

HIST: (894) 1919 c 207 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444; 2000 c 275 s 1

386.31 Consecutive numbering.

Each county recorder shall endorse plainly upon each instrument received for record or filing as soon as received a number consecutive, to the extent practicable, to the number affixed to the instrument next previously received and enter such number as a part of the entry relating to such instrument in all the indexes kept in the office and on the margin of the record of the instrument, and such number shall be prima facie evidence of priority of registration. If more than one instrument shall be received at the same time, by mail or other like enclosure, the recorder shall affix such number in the order directed by the sender; if no direction be given, then in the order in which the instruments actually come to the recorder's hand in opening the enclosures.

HIST: (895) RL s 538; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1983 c 99 s 1; 1986 c 444; 1999 c 11 art 4 s 2

386.32 Consecutive index.

Each county recorder shall keep an index of all records or files kept in the office showing the number of the instrument consecutively, the kind, the time of its reception, and where the same is recorded or filed, thus:

Number of Kind of Time of Where Recorded Instrument Instrument Reception or Filed Book Page File No.

Such entries shall be made as soon as the instrument is received, excepting only the place of record, which shall be filled in as soon as such instrument is recorded.

HIST: (896) RL s 539; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.33 Deputies.

Any county recorder may appoint one or more deputies in writing whose oath of office shall be endorsed on the appointment and recorded therewith in the office. County recorders shall be responsible for the acts of their deputies and may revoke their appointment at pleasure.

HIST: (897) RL s 540; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.34 Deputies, salaries.

The county board of each county having a population of less than 75,000, may by written order to be filed in the office of the county auditor allow one deputy county recorder in such county compensation for services as such deputy, to be fixed by the board and specified in said order. In each county containing less than 15 full and fractional congressional townships, and having more than 16,000 and less than 19,000 inhabitants according to the 1940 federal census, and having a market value of less than $29,000,000, exclusive of money and credits, the county board may by written order to be filed in the office of the county auditor allow one deputy county recorder in such county compensation for services as such deputy not exceeding $1,800 per year.

HIST: (897-1) 1911 c 382 s 1; 1917 c 83 s 1; 1927 c 207 s 1; 1931 c 139 s 1; 1947 c 488 s 1; 1949 c 113 s 1; 1949 c 451 s 1; 1949 c 455 s 1,2; 1951 c 54 s 1; 1955 c 155 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1988 c 719 art 5 s 84; 1989 c 329 art 13 s 20; 1990 c 480 art 9 s 15

386.35 Repealed, 1965 c 291 s 12

386.36 Farm names recorded.

The owner of farm lands in the state may designate a specific name of the farm lands and this name, together with a description of the farm lands according to the government survey thereof, may be filed with the county recorder of the county wherein the lands, or a part thereof, are situated, and this name, together with the description of the lands, shall be recorded by the county recorder in a book to be provided for such purpose, upon payment of a fee as prescribed in section 357.18, but no two names so designated and recorded shall be alike in the same county.

HIST: (899) 1909 c 154 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1983 c 99 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.37 Abstracts of title.

The county recorder, upon being paid lawful fees therefor, shall make out, under the recorder's certificate and seal, as the same appears of record or on file in the office, and deliver to any person requesting the same:

(1) A full and perfect abstract of title to any real estate together with all encumbrances, liens and instruments in any manner affecting such title;

(2) A continuation of any abstract of title, to any real estate that has been certified to by an official abstracter of the county within ten days after such request;

(3) An abstract of title to any real estate, together with all encumbrances, liens, and instruments in any manner affecting such title, from a certain date to a given date, within ten days after such request; or

(4) An abstract of title to any real estate covering encumbrances and liens, only, affecting such title between any two given dates, within ten days after such request.

HIST: (900) RL s 542; 1927 c 253; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444

386.375 Transfer and storage of abstracts.

Subdivision 1. Responsibility to transfer. (a) A person holding an abstract of title to real estate located in Minnesota shall, at a closing of a sale of the property to which the abstract pertains, make a written offer to transfer the abstract of title to the mortgagor or fee owner at no charge to the mortgagor or fee owner. If the offer is accepted, the abstract must be transferred at the closing unless the abstract of title is being held after the closing for issuance of a final title opinion or policy of title insurance in which case the holder has a reasonable period of time to transfer the abstract.

(b) A person holding an abstract of title to real estate located in Minnesota shall, within ten days of receipt of a written request from the mortgagor or fee owner of the property to which the abstract pertains, transfer the abstract of title to the mortgagor or fee owner at no charge, other than postage, to the mortgagor or fee owner. If the abstract of title is being held after a closing for issuance of a final title opinion or policy of title insurance, the holder has a reasonable period of time to transfer the abstract.

(c) If a person holding an abstract of title to real estate located in Minnesota fails to comply with the requirements of this subdivision, the mortgagor or fee owner of the property may have an abstract of title made at the expense of the last known person holding the abstract of title, and is also entitled to collect actual civil damages of up to $500 from the person last known to hold the abstract of title.

Subd. 2. Storage of abstracts. Before a person holding an abstract of title to real estate located in Minnesota may impose a charge or fee to store the abstract, the person shall first make a written offer to the mortgagor or fee owner to transfer the abstract at no charge, other than postage, to the fee owner or mortgagor. This subdivision does not apply to a person who holds an abstract pursuant to a written contract with the fee owner or mortgagor. A person violating this subdivision is subject to a penalty of $200 for each violation.

Subd. 3. Consumer education information. (a) A person other than the mortgagor or fee owner who transfers or offers to transfer an abstract of title shall present to the mortgagor or fee owner basic information in plain English about abstracts of title. This information must be sent in a form prepared and approved by the commissioner of commerce and must contain at least the following items:

(1) a definition and description of abstracts of title;

(2) an explanation that holders of abstracts of title must maintain it with reasonable care;

(3) an approximate cost or range of costs to replace a lost or damaged abstract of title;

(4) an explanation that abstracts of title may be required to sell, finance, or refinance real estate; and

(5) an explanation of options for storage of abstracts.

(b) The commissioner shall prepare the form for use under this subdivision as soon as possible. This subdivision does not apply until 60 days after the form is approved by the commissioner.

(c) A person violating this subdivision is subject to a penalty of $200 for each violation.

Subd. 4. Storage in Minnesota. After August 1, 1987, abstracts of title to real estate located in Minnesota must be stored within the state of Minnesota. Failure to comply with this subdivision entitles a mortgagor or fee owner to civil damages of up to $500.

Subd. 5. Exceptions. This section does not apply if the person holding the abstract of title is the mortgagor or fee owner of the real estate to which the abstract pertains.

Subd. 6. Repealed, 1996 c 310 s 1

HIST: 1984 c 566 s 6; 1986 c 358 s 16; 1987 c 329 s 21; 1987 c 336 s 43

386.38 Repealed, 1945 c 561 s 9

386.39 Instruments not properly executed.

Except where otherwise expressly provided by law, no county recorder shall record any conveyance, mortgage, or other instrument by which any interest in real estate may be in any way affected, unless the same is duly signed, executed and acknowledged according to law; any such officer offending herein shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and liable in damages to the party injured in a civil action.

HIST: (902) RL s 543; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.40 Seal.

Every county recorder shall have an official seal and affix the same to all documents requiring the recorder's official signature, except the endorsement mentioned in section 386.41. The seal may be affixed by a stamp that will print a seal that legibly reproduces under photographic or electronic methods. The seal also may be a printed facsimile or it may be electronically generated.

HIST: (903) RL s 544; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444; 1998 c 314 s 1

386.409 County recorder's official signature.

When the county recorder's official signature, or that of a deputy is required under section 386.41, an electronically generated facsimile signature or name may be used.

HIST: 1998 c 314 s 2

386.41 Certificate of record.

Every county recorder shall endorse upon each instrument recorded, over the recorder's official signature, OFFICE OF THE COUNTY RECORDER, ... COUNTY, MINNESOTA, CERTIFIED, FILED, AND/OR RECORDED ON, the date and time when it was recorded and the document number and/or book and page in which it was recorded; and every instrument shall be considered as recorded at the time so noted.

HIST: (904) RL s 545; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1986 c 444; 1998 c 314 s 3

386.42 Repealed, 1986 c 322 s 4

386.43 Repealed, 1985 c 233 s 12

386.44 Oaths and papers, where filed.

In counties not divided into towns, the official oaths and other papers required by law to be filed in the office of the town clerk shall be filed with the county recorder.

HIST: (777) RL s 446; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.45 Bankruptcy documents may be recorded, used as evidence.

(a) When a petition for bankruptcy, or a decree of adjudication, or an order approving the trustee's bond is made, pursuant to the Federal Bankruptcy Act of 1898, as amended by the Bankruptcy Act of 1938, chapter 575, Statutes at Large, volume 52, page 840, section 21 g, or a petition is made pursuant to the Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1978, hereinafter referred to as the "Bankruptcy Code," the bankrupt, debtor, trustee, receiver, custodian, referee, or any creditor may record a certified copy of the petition, decree, order, or a certificate of a clerk of the United States Bankruptcy Court relating to any matter involving the status of or disposition of the proceedings or pleadings, property of the estate or property of the debtor or documents or orders filed in the proceeding, all pursuant to the Bankruptcy Code, in the office of the county recorder or file the instruments in the office of the registrar of titles of any county in this state.

(b) Any certificate so recorded, or a certified copy thereof, is admissible as evidence in any action involving any instrument to which it relates or involving the title to the real estate affected by the certificate and is prima facie evidence of the facts stated therein.

HIST: (887-1) 1939 c 117; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1981 c 2 s 1

386.459 Official records; compilation, maintenance, and storage of information.

The county recorder may select and use alternative methods for the compilation, maintenance, and storage of the information contained in the official records listed in sections 386.03, 386.04, 386.05, 386.19, and 386.32, subject to the following conditions:

(1) the methods selected must provide for access to the information contained in the records by those authorized by law to have access to that information; and

(2) the methods selected must provide for the preservation of the information contained in the records to the extent specified by law.

HIST: 1998 c 314 s 4

386.46 Disposal of obsolete records.

Documents, filed or recorded by the county recorder, including sheriffs certificates, land title patents, incorporations, official bonds, mechanics liens, affidavits, orders of courts exercising probate jurisdiction, district court orders, satisfactions, warranty deeds, quitclaim deeds, lis pendens, assignments and miscellaneous documents, but still in possession because uncalled for by their owner for ten years after the filing or recording, may be destroyed by the county recorder. Federal liens, except federal estate and gift tax liens, may be destroyed ten years and 30 days, and state liens may be destroyed ten years after their filing or last extension and stricken from the indexes.

HIST: 1947 c 265 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1982 c 377 s 1; 1986 c 444; 1991 c 291 art 18 s 13; 1995 c 189 s 8; 1996 c 277 s 1

386.47 Obsolete records, destruction.

Any county board or the governing body of any municipality may by resolution authorize the destruction of the following instruments filed in the office of the county recorder of the county or clerk of the municipality:

(1) all satisfactions of chattel mortgages and releases of conditional sales contracts filed for record more than ten years; and

(2) all unsatisfied chattel mortgages and unreleased conditional sales contracts ten years after maturity; if no maturity date is shown, then ten years after the date of filing.

HIST: 1969 c 369 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.51 May record U.S. agency maps, plats, surveys, photos.

Upon the application of any interested person, and upon the payment of the fees required herein, the county recorder in and for the county wherein the land described in the instrument lies shall accept and file for record any map, survey, plat, surveyors notes or aerial photograph made and prepared by or for or under the direction and control of any agency of the United States.

HIST: 1955 c 324 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.52 Certificate of authentication.

Any such instrument shall be accompanied by an official certificate of the public officer or official charged with responsibility for custody of the original record so filed and recorded, testifying as to the official character of the instrument and certifying the copy tendered as a true, correct, and complete copy of the original and stating where the original document may be found.

HIST: 1955 c 324 s 2

386.53 Fees.

The county recorder shall be paid a fee of $2 for each instrument recorded under the provisions of sections 386.51 to 386.53, which instrument shall be kept in a separate book.

HIST: 1955 c 324 s 3; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.61 Definitions.

Subdivision 1. Application. For the purpose of sections 386.61 to 386.76, unless a different meaning is indicated by the context, the terms defined in this section shall have the meanings ascribed to them.

Subd. 2. Licensed abstracter. "Licensed abstracter" means any official, person, firm or corporation obtaining licenses pursuant to the terms of sections 386.61 to 386.76; and includes (1) present duly qualified and acting county recorders not now prohibited by law from making abstracts; (2) any person, firm or corporation engaged in the business of making abstracts of title and issuing certificates showing ownership of, or interest in, or liens upon any lands in the state of Minnesota, whether registered or not.

Subd. 3. Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146

Subd. 4. Commissioner. "Commissioner" means the commissioner of commerce.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 1; 1975 c 271 s 6; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1976 c 222 s 188; 1994 c 465 art 1 s 49

386.62 License.

No official, person, firm, association or corporation shall engage in the business of making abstracts of title and issuing certificates showing ownership of, or interest in, or liens upon any lands in the state of Minnesota, whether registered or not, without first obtaining a license pursuant to the provisions of sections 386.61 to 386.76.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 2; 1975 c 419 s 1; 1976 c 222 s 189

386.63 Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146

386.64 Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146

386.65 Examination of applicants for license.

Subdivision 1. Procedure; conditions. Applications for a license shall be made to the commissioner and shall be upon a form to be prepared by the commissioner and contain such information as may be required by it. Each applicant must pass an examination approved for use by the commissioner. The examination must be of sufficient scope to establish the applicant as capable of performing the duties of an abstracter whose work will be for the use and protection of the public. If application is made by a firm or corporation, one of the members or managing officials thereof shall take such examination. If the applicant successfully passes the examination and complies with all the provisions of sections 386.61 to 386.76, the commissioner shall issue a license to the applicant.

Subd. 2. Repealed, 1976 c 222 s 209

Subd. 3. Repealed, 1991 c 100 s 3

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 4; 1976 c 222 s 194; 1978 c 674 s 60; 1986 c 444; 1993 c 369 s 129; 1995 c 68 s 9

386.66 Bond or abstracter's liability insurance policy.

Before a license shall be issued, the applicant shall file with the commissioner an annual bond or abstracter's liability insurance policy for each license year, to be approved by the commissioner, running to the state of Minnesota in the penal sum of at least $100,000 conditioned for the payment by such abstracter of any damages that may be sustained by or accrue to any person by reason of or on account of any error, deficiency or mistake arising wrongfully or negligently in any abstract, or continuation thereof, or in any certificate showing ownership of, or interest in, or liens upon any lands in the state of Minnesota, whether registered or not, made by and issued by such abstracter, provided however, that the aggregate liability of the surety to all persons under such bond shall in no event exceed the amount of such bond. If the applicant intends to engage in the business of abstracting in any county having more than 200,000 inhabitants, the bond or insurance policy required herein shall be in the penal sum of at least $250,000. Applicants that are title insurance companies regulated by chapter 68A and licensed pursuant to sections 60A.02 and 60A.06, subdivision 1, clause (7), and their employees or those having cash or securities on deposit with the state of Minnesota in an amount equal to the said bond or insurance policy shall be exempt from furnishing the bond or an insurance policy herein required but shall be liable to the same extent as if a bond or insurance policy has been given and filed. The bond or insurance policy required hereunder shall be written by some surety or other company authorized to do business in this state issuing bonds or abstracter's liability insurance policies and shall be issued for a period of one or more years, and renewed for one year at the date of expiration as principal continues in business.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 5; 1975 c 419 s 2; 1976 c 222 s 195; 1986 c 444; 1991 c 100 s 1; 1993 c 77 s 1; 1993 c 369 s 130; 1994 c 465 art 1 s 50; 1995 c 68 s 10; 1996 c 439 art 3 s 12

386.67 Licensed abstracter, seal.

A licensed abstracter furnishing abstracts of title to real property under the provisions hereof shall provide a seal, which seal shall show the name of such licensed abstracter, and shall file with the commissioner the signatures of persons authorized to sign certificates on abstracts and continuations of abstracts and certificates showing ownership of, or interest in, or liens upon any lands in the state of Minnesota, whether registered or not, issued by such licensed abstracter.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 6; 1976 c 222 s 196; 1991 c 100 s 2; 1993 c 369 s 131; 1995 c 68 s 11

386.68 Fees.

The following fees must be paid to the commissioner: an initial licensing fee of $50; and a license renewal fee of $40.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 9; 1975 c 419 s 3; 1976 c 222 s 197; 1993 c 369 s 132; 1995 c 68 s 12

386.69 Licenses.

Licenses issued by the commissioner under the provisions hereof shall recite that such bond or insurance policy has been duly filed and approved, and the license shall authorize the official, person, firm or corporation named in it to engage in and carry on the business of an abstracter of real estate titles in the state of Minnesota. The license shall be issued for a period as determined by the commissioner, and shall thereafter be renewed upon conditions prescribed by the commissioner.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 7; 1976 c 222 s 198; 1993 c 369 s 133; 1995 c 68 s 13

386.695 Repealed, 1976 c 222 s 209

386.696 Repealed, 1976 c 222 s 209

386.70 Repealed, 1993 c 369 s 146

386.705 Administrative actions and penalties.

An abstracter licensed under sections 386.61 to 386.76 is subject to the penalties imposed pursuant to section 45.027. The commissioner has all the powers provided in section 45.027 and shall proceed in the manner provided by that section in actions against abstracters.

HIST: 1993 c 369 s 134

386.706 Rules.

The commissioner may adopt rules necessary for the administration of sections 386.61 to 386.76.

HIST: 1993 c 369 s 135

386.71 Licensed abstracters, access to public records.

Licensed abstracters shall have access during ordinary office hours to the public records in the office of the county recorder in the county in which such abstracter is authorized to function, to make such memoranda, microfilm, photostats, photographs, or notations from the records thereof as may be necessary for the purpose of making or compiling abstracts, continuations thereof, or issuing certificates showing ownership of, or interest in, or liens upon any lands in the state, whether registered or not, and the compiling, posting, copying and keeping up their abstract books, indices, or other records necessary to carry on or perform the duties and functions of a licensed abstracter, provided that such access during ordinary office hours shall in no manner hinder or interfere with the public officer in the performance of official duties.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 8; 1975 c 419 s 7; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1976 c 222 s 200; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 384 art 2 s 88

386.72 Abstracter's certificate as prima facie evidence.

Any abstract of title, continuation thereof or certificate showing ownership of, or interest in, or liens upon any lands in the state of Minnesota, whether registered or not, certified to be true and correct by any licensed abstracter under the signature and seal of such abstracter, shall be received by the courts of this state as prima facie evidence of the existence or nonexistence of records, the content and filing indicated on such abstract, continuation thereof or certificate hereinbefore described.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 11; 1976 c 222 s 201

386.73 County recorders, may employ licensed abstracters.

Nothing herein shall prohibit any county recorder who does not hold a certificate of authority pursuant to the provisions hereof from employing a licensed abstracter and issuing abstracts pursuant to sections 386.61 to 386.76.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 15; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1976 c 222 s 202

386.74 Rights of county recorders not abridged.

Sections 386.61 to 386.76 shall not apply to nor abridge the rights of county recorders, as set forth in section 386.37.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 16; 1976 c 181 s 2

386.75 Practice of attorneys not abridged.

Nothing herein shall limit or abridge the rights of a duly licensed attorney at law in the attorney's practice in the state of Minnesota.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 13; 1986 c 444

386.76 Violation a misdemeanor.

Any person who violates any of the provisions of sections 386.61 to 386.76 shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

HIST: 1957 c 871 s 12

386.77 Filing fee for state, city, town item may be billed.

An instrument of conveyance, assignment or release, a judgment or other document, which is entitled to recording or filing, and which by its terms is for the benefit of the state or any county, city or town, shall be recorded or filed by any county recorder or registrar of titles without the payment of fees when offered for filing or recording by the state or any of its agencies, or by the benefited subdivision. The fee for the recording or filing shall be paid by the state, its agency, or by the benefited subdivision, but not by another department or agency of that county, upon submission of a statement of charges by the county recorder or registrar of titles.

HIST: 1967 c 124 s 1; 1973 c 123 art 5 s 7; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1985 c 281 s 9; 1986 c 399 art 1 s 28; 1986 c 416 s 10

386.78 Security deposits.

The county recorder in each county may accept security deposits to guarantee payment of charges. The county recorder shall deposit any accepted security deposit in a security fund with the county treasurer. The county treasurer may invest said funds and the income therefrom shall be deposited in the general fund of the county.

The county recorder shall extend credit to any person who has made such deposit up to the amount of the deposit.

Any person may withdraw any such deposit provided that any unpaid items shall first be deducted therefrom, except that the county recorder may require a reasonable minimum deposit be maintained based on anticipated monthly charges of the depositor.

HIST: 1969 c 802 s 1; 1976 c 181 s 2; 1999 c 69 s 1; 2004 c 274 s 2