Recording Checklist



GENERALLY documents which do not meet the following requirements must not be recorded:

Beaufort County S.C. Document - Property must be within the legal limits of Beaufort County, SC.


Documents must be fully legible, and should not be of such poor quality or condition that they cannot be read or copied legibly after scanning. Blurred or stained/disfigured documents may be brought to the attention of the filing party to replace those unreadable portions, or will be returned unFiled.

Any grommets, ribbons, seals, or other material that may inhibit the scanning process will be removed from the documents prior to scanning.

Original Signatures of Executing Party(ies) & Date of Execution

Although document may be a copy or a FAX, all required signatures must be originals.  We encourage use of BLUE INK for Signatures.  Indexing of Executing Parties are taken from the signature, rather than from the typed name on the face of the document.  If these names are totally different, the document may be returned unFiled. The exact name spelling should be typed or printed beneath each signature. The Date of Execution must also be clearly noted on the document.

Subscribing Witnesses

Most documents require 2 witnesses' original signatures.  One of these witnesses may sign the "Affidavit of Probate" and the other may be the Notary Public.  The individuals who execute the document may not be any of these. Powers of Attorney may be Witnessed as provided for in the jurisdiction in which executed, but if less than two Witnesses, an Affidavit is required from a licensed Attorney in that jurisdiction which cites the applicable Law related to such execution.

Affidavits of Probate and Acknowledgements

Documents must have either this "Affidavit" or an Acknowledgement following the Execution and Witness Signatures.  The Probate provides for one of the two Witnesses to confirm to either the other witness or Notary, that he/she saw the Grantor(s) execute the document. The Acknowledgement provides for the Executing party to make oath to the Notary that he/she executed the document.

Notary Public

Documents presented for filing, except as otherwise provided by law, must be "Notarized", by a licensed Notary Public, with the appropriate "Notary" statement, signature, expiration date and Seal.

Description & Derivation Clause

Most documents must contain some legal description of the property involved and/or reference to an attached Plat which provides such description (see Plat Recording Guidelines). Deeds and Mortgages must include a Derivation Clause, preferably at the end of the legal description, that gives recording information for the Deed which established the Grantor's (seller's) ownership, and provides an important link in the "Chain of Title".  This clause shall include the Name of the original Grantor, and the Recording Date AND/OR Book and Page number of the Deed which originally conveyed the property to the Grantor. Quit Claim Deeds are the exception from the SC statute concerning a derivation clause.

NOTE: An effort may be made at State level, to standardize Legal Description - generally along the following lines: Legal "meets & bounds" narratives and/or Plat required - anchored by legal survey with at least one corner monumented. No Non-Plat graphics; No "Bounded By" references; No unstable or obscure boundary references; and, No references to other documents except recorded Plats. Comments to this office welcome..


Grantee's/Mortagee's Address

The address of the Buyer (Grantee) on Deeds, and the Secured Party (Mortgagee) on Mortgages, must be clearly noted, usually on the face of those documents.

Preparation Clause

Deeds must have a clause, preferably at the end of the legal description, that tells the name, and the address, of who prepared the document.

District, Map & Parcel No.

This information must be clearly noted somewhere on all Deeds and all Plats (preferably on the first page).  The Assessor's office will determine later if that number is correct, and if incorrect, the Filer may be required to re-record a corrected document at the Filer's cost. Also, see "Attached PLATS", below.  This DMP information is an important link between a number of shared data-bases for County staff and public access to information related to Real Property. The information may be obtained off of the old Deed, or a Tax Notice, or by contacting the Beaufort County Assessor at 843/255-2400 (last resort please).

Affidavit of True Consideration

Any conveyance of property that meets State and Local laws requiring payment of Recording Fees, Transfer Fees, etc., must indicate the "True Consideration" or value in money's worth for that conveyance (see S.C. Code Sect 12-24 as amended).  Thus, for example, if a Deed does not indicate on its face the amount paid, or if the words "and other consideration" are used, or if a trade of property is involved, there must be attached an "Affidavit of True Consideration" that reflects the actual value of the transaction.  That value is used to calculate Fees (including State & County Recording Fees, and Town of Hilton Head Island Transfer Fees) due for the recording.


Affidavit of Authority

Deeds that are submitted for rerecording in order to correct property description or Grantee Name errors must be reexecuted by the Grantor, or the preparing Attorney must file an Affidavit which indicates the reason for the correction and affirming his authority to make such correction on behalf of the Grantor.

NOTE:  If the Filer claims an "Exemption" from any Fees established by State or Local
laws, an Affidavit must also be attached which cites the specific section of the law
under which such Exemption is claimed. (See S.C. Code 4-5-80;  also, see Hilton Head Island Ordinance #95-2 & 95-4 in re their Transfer Fees).

Missing Attachments Referenced on Document

If a document is missing a specifically referenced Plat or other attachment/exhibit, it will be returned to the attention of the Filer for completion or to have the reference removed.


See "Plat Recording Information" for guidelines concerning the attachment of any graphics to other recordable documents.

Fees Paid

All required Fees must be paid in full.  We may accept over-payments as a courtesy, but will not accept a document for which all Fees have not been fully satisfied.  We generally accept Checks and/or Cash, but do not take credit cards of any type.  Checks must be reviewed to ensure that they are properly filled out and executed (by two parties in some cases).


Effective 1/1/2009: ‘A person preparing or filing a document for recordation or filing in the official records may not include a social security, driver’s license, state identification, passport, checking account, savings account, credit card, or debit card number, or PIN code, or passwords in the document, unless expressly required by law. An individual has a right to request a register of deeds or clerk of court to remove from an image or copy of an official record placed on a publicly available Internet web site used by a register of deeds or clerk of court to display public records, any social security, driver’s license, state identification, passport, checking account, savings account, credit card, or debit card number, or PIN, or passwords contained in an official record.  The request must be in writing and delivered by mail, facsimile, or electronic transmission or in person, to the register of deeds or clerk of court. The request must specify the identification page number that contains the social security, driver’s license, state identification, passport, checking account, savings account, credit card, debit card number, or PIN code, or passwords to be redacted. There is no fee for the redaction pursuant to request.’

Mortgage Satisfactions:

Satisfaction by Original Mortgage - Mortgages may be satisfied by a statement typed or stamped upon, or attached to, the original document, which states that the debt has been "paid in full" or some similar wording.  This statement must be signed by an officer of the Mortgagee or secured party, with a signature of one or more witnesses, and must state the Date of the Satisfaction.

Note:  In that Mortgages are frequently "Assigned" to other Banks or Mortgage Companies, the satisfying party may be other than that of the original Mortgagee on the face of the document.  In such case, it is recommended that the recording Book & Page #s of all Assignments be referenced somewhere with the derivation information referencing the original Mortgage.

Attorney Affidavit of Satisfaction - An Attorney licensed to practice in the State of S.C., who can provide proof of payment, may record an Affidavit, duly executed in the presence of two witnesses and probated or acknowledged, which states that full payment has been made, and that evidence of such payment exists. (See S.C. Code 29-3-330 as amended 6/11/99.)

Mortgage Assignments, Transfers, Partial Releases, & Subordinations

These documents must meet the same recording requirements as the original Mortgage they affect, and must also indicate the Date, Book and Page Number of the affected Mortgage.

Tax Liens

Typically filed by either U.S. Internal Revenue Service (843/524-9774) or S.C. Department of Revenue (843/524-2852) against a delinquent Taxpayer's real property of whatever nature.  Can be withdrawn, expunged, partially released, or fully satisfied only by the filing agency or Court order.  Questions about such Liens filed in this office, and related reports in Credit Bureau files,  must be directed to the filing agency.  Incorrect or non-current data on Credit Reports must be referred to the Credit Agency from which the report was obtained.  All Tax Liens are public record except Expunged Liens.

Mechanics Liens

Mechanics Liens submitted for recording must conform to S.C. Code of Laws, Title 29 as amended, et seq.  

Mechanics Liens may be Released or Satisfied, partially or wholly by the Plaintiff or his
legal agent, or by Court Order, or may be substituted by a Cash or Surety Bond at 1.333% the value of the original lien.

Cash Bonds must accompanied by a certified check, made out to the Beaufort County Register of Deeds, in the amount of one and one third the amount of the original Lien.  Surety and Cash Bonds are typically satisfied by a notarized filing from the Plaintiff or by Court Order.

UNIFORM COMMERCIAL CODE (UCC) - Financing Statement:
(See Sect. 36-9, S.C. Code of Laws) -

Effective 7/1/2001 there were extensive changes in the UCC Code. Only UCCs secured by Real Estate may be filed with County ROD. UCCs secured by Personal Property are to be filed with the Secretary of State's Office, ATTN: UCCs, at 1205 Pendleton Street, Columbia, SC, 29211.

Standard Forms for submission of UCCs have changed. Forms, Fees, records searches, and answers to questions about somewhat extensive new filing regulations, may be obtained from the Secretary of State's Office at the above address or on-line at "".