Rising Cost of Doing Business
I can more readily put together a projected cost estimate for a specific job by taking a quick look online to see how many of the nine section corners have been reported as found (with references) over the past 30 years or so. A trip to the courthouse to discover other surveys tied to the remaining corners can be very helpful. Plus, that is where the field notes and plats are stored along with railroad data, road data, etc. That leaves much less to chance. I am far more confident of doing the job correctly. When I stumble onto a section with only one or two corners online I know this one will be a bear and probably involve digging with a backhoe at several locations.
A secondary reason that I object to mandated recording concerns the rights of my clients to privacy. It doesn't happen often, but occasionally I will be hired by someone who thinks they are encroaching on their neighbor. They want the data generated by my survey so that they can make plans to address the problem. In one case, my client was "being secretive" because their neighbor was a total jack*** and was capable of buying much more justice than they could afford. They needed time to save up money to hopefully purchase the land.
In a mandatory recording state, I would either have to give them an unsigned copy of the plat or tell them, "Sorry folks, but the integrity of the cadastre demands that I immediately show this survey to everyone as it would be unconscionable to expect your neighbors to hire a surveyor and get the data for themselves. I assume ill intent whenever I see someone unwilling to share everything with everyone. After all, if you're not doing anything wrong then why would you need to be so private?"
The idea of private boundaries cheapens our work. We can't exercise our quasi-judicial functions under the cover of night.
Yea verily, brother. Well said.
Is my understanding correct that in a Recording State a paper Record of Survey is added to a file for each parcel whenever a surveyor does anything concerning property lines? These files are kept and maintained by the county? And keep growing forever? They must take up more space than the Registry of Deeds. There's no way the Virgin Islands Govt. could do this. They are seriously challenged by recording deeds and surveys. Occasionally I hear Torrens Registry suggested to prevent surveyors and lawyers from stealing land, but my experience back in Mass. tells me that that would be a disaster here.
When a new tract is created, it is time to file for sure or you can get spanked. Some of us file every survey we do because those before us did that and that is the only reason we have a clue on how to get started. Plus in PLSSia it is vital to report section corner data. You are messing around with many current and future tracts every time you establish a corner that has been obliterated or lost.