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Legislative Changes (California Assembly and State Bills)

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The items in the brief list below affect recorded documents as of January 1, 2008. Please contact us if you need more information about these changes.

SB 780: LOCAL GOVERNMENT OMNIBUS ACT OF 2019 (Government Release Recording Fee Increase)

This bill, in part, amended Government Code Section 27361.3 which provides for the recording fee to record a release of lien, judgment, notice, or encumbrance that is being released by the state, city, county, or other political subdivision to increase to "two times the fee charged to record the first page of a lien, encumbrance, or notice under subdivision (a) of Section 27361, on January 1 of the year the release is recorded  if the original lien, encumbrance, or notice was recorded without fee as provided by Section 27383."  This increase becomes effective January 1, 2020.  Please refer to the County Recorder Fee Schedule for applicable recording fees.


This bill additionally exempts from the $75.00 fee established under the Building Homes and Jobs Act (SB 2 – 2017) any real estate instrument, paper, or notice executed or recorded by the federal government pursuant to the Uniform Lien Registration Act, or by the state, or any county, municipality, or other political subdivision of the state.

Government Code Section 27388.1 can be found in its entirety here.


 SB 2 mandates that the County Recorder charge a $75 fee on every real estate instrument, paper, or notice submitted to be recorded in addition to any other recording fees to establish the Building Homes and Job Trust that will fund statewide affordable housing projects.  Documents that are statutorily exempt from paying recording fees would also be exempt from this fee.  Documents believed to be exempt from paying this fee must have a valid exemption on the face of the document, or on a cover sheet, prior to submitting with the County Recorder.  The following exemptions may apply:
·         A Documentary Transfer Tax (DTT) declaration stating that the transfer is subject to payment of the DTT including the amount of DTT to be paid at the time of recording; or
·         Exempt per GC 27388.1(a) (2): recorded concurrently “in connection with” a transfer subject to the imposition of DTT; or
·         Exempt per GC 27388.1(a) (2): recorded concurrently “in connection with” a transfer of real property that is a residential dwelling to an owner-occupier; or
·         Exempt per GC 27388.1(a) (1): fee cap of $225 reached; or
·         Exempt per GC 27388.1(a) (1): document is not related to real property (ex. Bonds)
 Failure to include an exemption will result in the imposition of the $75 fee.  Fees collected are to be deposited
in the State and may not be available for refund. For more information refer to Government Code section 27388.1.

In the event this fee was collected in error, a request for a refund must be submitted to the County Recorder.  Please complete the request form here and mail to:

Madera County Recorder

200 W. 4th Street

Madera, CA 93637

AB 1168: Change Affecting Social Security Numbers in Recorded Documents

A new law in Chapter 627 of the Statutes of 2007 prohibits the recording of a document that contains more than the last four digits of a social security number. This law states that unless otherwise required to do so by state or federal law, no person, entity, or government agency shall present for recording or filing with a county recorder a document that is required by any provision of law to be open to the public if that record displays more than the last four digits of a social security number. For more information, see Government Code Section 1 7 9 8 point .8 9.

AB 886: Change in Acknowledgment Format

Assembly Bill 8 86 Changes the format for a California Acknowledgment. This law in Chapter 399 of the Statutes of 2007 eliminates "personally known" as an element of identification on Certificates of Acknowledgment. For more information, see Section 1 1 8 9 of the Civil Code.