TITLE 3. PUBLIC RECORDS
CHAPTER 11. PROVISIONS GENERALLY APPLICABLE TO PUBLIC RECORDS
Sec. 11.001. PLACE OF RECORDING. (a) To be effectively recorded, an instrument relating to real property must be eligible for recording and must be recorded in the county in which a part of the property is located. However, if such an instrument grants a security interest by a utility as defined in Section 261.001, Business & Commerce Code, the instrument may be recorded as required by Sections 261.004 and 261.006 of that code, and if such instrument is so recorded, the lien and the secured interest created by such instrument shall be deemed perfected for all purposes.
(b) If an instrument has been recorded in a proper county, the subsequent creation of a new county containing property conveyed or encumbered by the instrument does not affect the recording's validity or effect as notice. The county court of the new county shall at its own expense:
(1) obtain a certified transcript of the record of all instruments conveying or encumbering property in the new county;
(2) deposit the transcript for public inspection in the recorder's office of the new county; and
(3) make an index of the transcript.
Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 3486, ch. 576, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 999, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.
Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 885 (H.B. 2278), Sec. 2.32, eff. April 1, 2009.
Sec. 11.002. ENGLISH LANGUAGE. (a) An instrument relating to real or personal property may not be recorded unless it is in English or complies with this section.
(b) An authenticated instrument not in English that was executed before August 22, 1897, may be recorded and operate as constructive notice from the date of filing if:
(1) a correct English translation is recorded with the original instrument; and
(2) the accuracy of the translation is sworn to before an officer authorized to administer oaths.
(c) An instrument acknowledged outside the United States or its territories in accordance with Section 121.001(c)(3), Civil Practice and Remedies Code, that contains a certificate, stamp, or seal of a notary public or other official before whom the acknowledgment was taken or an apostille relating to the acknowledgment, any portion of which is not in English, may be recorded and operate as constructive notice from the date of filing if:
(1) a correct English translation of any non-English portion of the certificate, stamp, seal, or apostille is recorded with the original instrument;
(2) the accuracy of the translation is sworn to before an officer authorized to administer oaths; and
(3) any apostille relating to the acknowledgment complies with the Hague Convention dated October 5, 1961, titled Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents.
Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 3486, ch. 576, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984. Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 891, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.
Sec. 11.003. GRANTEE'S ADDRESS. (a) An instrument executed after December 31, 1981, conveying an interest in real property may not be recorded unless:
(1) a mailing address of each grantee appears in the instrument or in a separate writing signed by the grantor or grantee and attached to the instrument; or
(2) a penalty filing fee equal to the greater of $25 or twice the statutory recording fee for the instrument is paid.
(b) The validity of a conveyance as between the parties is not affected by a failure to include an address of each grantee in the instrument or an attached writing.
(c) Payment of a filing fee and acceptance of the instrument by the county clerk for recording creates a conclusive presumption that the requirements of this section have been met.
Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 3487, ch. 576, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.
Sec. 11.004. DUTY OF RECORDER. (a) A county clerk shall:
(1) correctly record, as required by law, within a reasonable time after delivery, any instrument authorized or required to be recorded in that clerk's office that is proved, acknowledged, or sworn to according to law;
(2) give a receipt, as required by law, for an instrument delivered for recording;
(3) record instruments relating to the same property in the order the instruments are filed; and
(4) provide and keep in the clerk's office the indexes required by law.
(b) A county clerk who violates a provision of this section and the sureties on the clerk's bond are liable for damages and, on motion in district court and after three days' notice to the clerk, for a civil penalty of not more than $500, half of which is payable to the county and half to the person who files the motion.
Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 3487, ch. 576, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 162, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.
Sec. 11.0041. REVIEW OF CERTAIN INSTRUMENTS IN CERTAIN COUNTIES. (a) This section applies only to the county clerk of a county:
(A) is located on the international border; and
(B) has a population of less than 15,000;
(2) in which a colonia self-help center established under Section 2306.582, Government Code, is located; or
(3) that is served by a colonia self-help center described by Subdivision (2) in another county.
(b) Before accepting an instrument conveying real property for filing, the county clerk may send the instrument to the county attorney for review under this section. Not later than five business days after the date the county attorney receives an instrument under this subsection, the county attorney shall:
(1) review the instrument to determine whether the platting requirements prescribed by Sections 232.023, 232.025, and 232.031, Local Government Code, have been satisfied; and
(2) return the instrument to the county clerk with a statement of the county attorney's determination under Subdivision (1).
(c) Notwithstanding Section 11.004(a), the county clerk shall immediately notify the party that presented the instrument for recording that:
(1) the clerk is referring the instrument to the county attorney for review;
(2) the instrument will not be immediately recorded; and
(3) the clerk is not required to file an instrument the county attorney determines the clerk is not required to file.
Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1176 (H.B. 3479), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.
Sec. 11.005. JUDGMENT PROVING AN INSTRUMENT OR CORRECTING A CERTIFICATE. (a) A person interested under an instrument that may be proved for record may bring an action in district court for a judgment proving the instrument.
(b) A person interested under a defectively certified instrument for which acknowledgement or proof of execution has been properly made may bring an action in district court for a judgment correcting the certificate.
(c) If a certified copy of a judgment in a suit under this section that shows proof of an instrument is attached to the instrument, the instrument may be recorded with the same effect as if it were acknowledged.
Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 3488, ch. 576, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.
Sec. 11.006. INSTRUMENT AFFECTING TITLE TO LAND IN ARCHER COUNTY. An instrument that in any manner affects title to land in Archer County, Texas, but was recorded in Jack County on or after August 10, 1866, but no later than August 10, 1870, and was made under the hand and seal of the county clerk of Shackelford County, is admissible in evidence in any suit in which secondary evidence is admissible.
Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 3488, ch. 576, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.
Sec. 11.007. EFFECT OF CITATION TO REAL PROPERTY RECORDS. A reference in an instrument to the volume and page number, film code number, or county clerk file number of the "real property records" (or other words of similar import) for a particular county is equivalent to a reference to the deed records, deed of trust records, or other specific records, for the purpose of providing effective notice to all persons of the existence of the referenced instrument.
Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 161, Sec. 1, eff. May 25, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 205, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 26, 1991.
Sec. 11.008. PERSONAL INFORMATION IN REAL PROPERTY RECORDS. (a) In this section, "instrument" means a deed, deed of trust, or any other record recorded by a county clerk related to real property, including a mineral lease, a mechanic's lien, and the release of a mechanic's lien.
(b) An instrument submitted for recording is not required to contain an individual's social security number, and the social security number of an individual is not obtained or maintained by the clerk under this section. The preparer of a document may not include an individual's social security number in a document that is presented for recording in the office of the county clerk.
(c) Notwithstanding Section 191.007(c), Local Government Code, an instrument transferring an interest in real property to or from an individual must include a notice that appears on the top of the first page of the instrument in 12-point boldfaced type or 12-point uppercase letters and reads substantially as follows:
NOTICE OF CONFIDENTIALITY RIGHTS: IF YOU ARE A NATURAL PERSON, YOU MAY REMOVE OR STRIKE ANY OR ALL OF THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION FROM ANY INSTRUMENT THAT TRANSFERS AN INTEREST IN REAL PROPERTY BEFORE IT IS FILED FOR RECORD IN THE PUBLIC RECORDS: YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER OR YOUR DRIVER'S LICENSE NUMBER.
(d) The validity of an instrument as between the parties to the instrument and the notice provided by the instrument are not affected by a party's failure to include the notice required under Subsection (c).
(e) The county clerk may not under any circumstance reject an instrument presented for recording solely because the instrument fails to comply with this section. Other than the duty to redact an individual's social security number as required by Section 552.147, Government Code, the county clerk has no duty to ensure that an instrument presented for recording does not contain an individual's social security number.
(f) The county clerk shall post a notice in the county clerk's office stating that instruments recorded in the real property or official public records or the equivalent of the real property or official public records of the county:
(1) are not required to contain a social security number or driver's license number; and
(2) are public records available for review by the public.
(g) All instruments described by this section are subject to inspection by the public. The county clerk is not criminally or civilly liable for disclosing an instrument or information in an instrument in compliance with the public information law (Chapter 552, Government Code) or another law.
(h) Unless this section is cited in a law enacted after September 1, 2003, this section is the exclusive law governing the confidentiality of personal information contained in the real property or official public records or the equivalent of the real property or official public records of a county.
(i) To the extent that federal law conflicts with this section, an instrument must contain the information required by and must be filed in a manner that complies with federal law.
(j) On receipt of a written request from a federal judge, including a federal bankruptcy judge, a marshal of the United States Marshals Service, a United States attorney, a state judge as defined by Section 572.002, Government Code, or a family member as defined by Section 31.006, Finance Code, of a federal judge, marshal, attorney, or state judge, the county clerk shall omit or redact from an instrument described by this section that is available in an online database made public by the county clerk, or by a provider with which the county commissioners court contracts to provide the online database, social security number, driver's license number, and residence address of the federal judge, marshal, attorney, state judge, or family member of the federal judge, marshal, attorney, or state judge.
Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 715, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 960, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.
Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 45 (S.B. 461), Sec. 1, eff. May 13, 2005.
Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 3 (H.B. 2061), Sec. 2, eff. March 28, 2007.
Acts 2017, 85th Leg., R.S., Ch. 190 (S.B. 42), Sec. 25, eff. September 1, 2017.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 415 (S.B. 73), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2019.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 518 (S.B. 489), Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2019.
Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 383 (S.B. 1134), Sec. 13, eff. September 1, 2021.