Land Records Services

Taxes and Fees
Recording Requirements for Documents
Land Records Research
Deed Modifications, Title Changes
Paid-off Loans
Real Property Code Numbers
Judgments
Financing Statements
Land Record Forms
Plats & Surveys

Taxes and Fees

Recording Requirements for Documents

Documents submitted for recordation must comply with all mandatory recordation requirements set forth in the Code of Virginia. A deed conveying no more than four residential units must state on the first page of the document that it was prepared either by the owner of the real property or by an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The attorney statement must include both the attorney’s name and Virginia State Bar Number. The party preparing the document must include a contact phone number on the first page of the document.

Documents submitted for recordation do not require cover sheets.

Land Records Research

Documents involving real property located in Arlington County and the City of Falls Church are recorded in the Arlington County Circuit Court’s Land Records Division. Prior to 1988, documents involving real property located in the City of Falls Church were recorded in the Fairfax County Circuit Court and remain there. Arlington County Circuit Court does not have and cannot provide copies of documents involving property located in the City of Falls Church that were recorded prior to 1988.

On Site
You can perform a land records research at the Circuit Court Land Records Division (Mon.-Fri 8 a.m.-4 p.m.). Visitors to the the Division can make copies of all recorded documents at a rate of $0.50 per page (plus $2 per document for the document to be certified). Pay by cash or a check payable to the Clerk of the Circuit Court.

Land Records Division staff members provide general assistance and guidance on how to perform research, but they can’t perform research for you. For assistance with complex or extensive research, you may want to hire a local title company or real estate attorney.

Online
You can subscribe to the Circuit Court’s online records system, County Application Framework (CAF) by submitting an original signed and notarized CAF Registration Form with a subscription payment of $50 per month. The Court accepts payments for periods of one month to one year only by checks payable to the Clerk of the Circuit Court.

All online records site subscribers must comply with all laws governing secure remote access to land records, including, but not limited to, the requirements set forth in Code of Virginia §17.1-294(D). The Clerk’s Office reserves the right to require such information, as necessary, to determine whether a potential subscriber’s use of the online records site will comply with all applicable laws and to deny access to applicants who don’t adequately demonstrate an intended use that complies with such laws.

You can view certain land records, including recorded documents relating to judgments, financing statements and wills, at the CAF online records site without a subscription — just sign in as a “guest” to search for documents. However, as a nonsubscriber, you won’t have access to view any document images.

By Mail
You may submit a written request by mail for copies of up to five documents. The request must contain the deed book and page information of the requested documents, a self-addressed stamped envelope and a check payment for the total copy fee. Note whether you need certification in the written request for copies. To find out how many pages a document contains, call 703-228-4369.

Mail your completed CAF online registration form, along with payment, or your request for documents to:

Arlington County Circuit Court
Land Records Division
1425 N Courthouse Road, Suite 6200
Arlington, Virginia 22201

Deed Modifications, Title Changes

The names of individuals in a deed cannot be modified once the deed has been recorded.

To change the status of the title to your property, you should prepare and record a new deed that effectuates the desired change.

Individuals may prepare their own deeds or can use an attorney. The Land Records Division does not provide form deeds or legal advice. The Court recommends using an attorney. Call the Arlington County Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service at 703-228-3390 for more information about local real estate attorneys.

If preparing your own deed, you can access helpful resource materials at the law library located on the courthouse building’s first floor (Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.).

Once you pay off the loan on your home, the lender should record a Certificate of Satisfaction to show that the loan has been paid within 90 days of the final payment.

Lenders usually send the Certificate of Satisfaction directly to the Land Records Division, without any action required by you. If the lender instead sends the Certificate of Satisfaction to you, then you must provide the certificate to the Land Records Division for recordation, which costs $41.

Once the Land Records Division records a Certificate of Satisfaction, it returns the certificate to the address provided by the party that submitted it for recordation (usually the lender).

The Land Records Division will not notify you that it has recorded a Certificate of Satisfaction; however, you can call 703-228-4369 90 days after you paid off your loan to confirm if the Land Records Division recorded a Certificate of Satisfaction.

Real Property Code (RPC) Numbers

To determine the RPC number for property located in Arlington County, use the Arlington County Department of Real Estate Assessments’ Property Data Search.

To determine the RPC number for property located in the City of Falls Church, you can use the City of Falls Church Assessment Information Database.

Both sites provide instructions on how to locate specific property information, which includes the eight-digit RPC number.

Judgments

To file an in-state abstract of judgment, you must submit the following:

  • An original abstract of judgment or a certified copy of the judgment order
  • A $10 check payable to the Clerk of the Circuit Court
  • A self-addressed, stamped envelope

To file an amendment, assignment, attorney’s lien or an out-of-state foreign judgment, you must submit the following:

  • An authenticated or triple seal judgment
  • An affidavit of the last known address for the plaintiff(s) and defendant(s)
  • A $10 check (for an amendment, assignment or attorney’s lien) or a $25 check (for an out-of-state foreign judgment) payable to the Clerk of the Circuit Court.
  • A self-addressed, stamped envelope
  • To file release of judgment, you don’t need to submit anything, and there is no fee.

You can obtain a copy of a judgment from the Land Records Division in person or by mailing a request:

  • Specifically identify the judgment of which you want a copy
  • Include a $5 check (for an abstract of judgment) or a $7.50 check (for a triple seal abstract) payable to the Clerk of the Circuit Court. Include a self-addressed, stamped envelope
  • Mail to:

Arlington County Circuit Court
Land Records Division
Attn: Judgments Clerk
1425 N. Courthouse Road, Suite 6200
Arlington, VA 22201

Financing Statements

The Land Records Division files Financing Statements and Financing Statement Amendments (i.e., assignment, change, continuation or termination) for $20 per document.

You can access financing state forms at the Virginia State Corporation Commission website. Title § 8.9A-501(a) of the Code of Virginia governs the proper filing office for a financing statement, and the party submitting the financing statement must ensure the proper office files the financing statement.

For more information on the Land Records Division’s services, call 703-228-4369.

Plats/Surveys

For most Arlington properties, the plat recorded in the Land Records Division was recorded in the mid 1900s and just shows the lot boundary within a subdivision, not any physical improvements or landscaping/vegetation. If you are trying to determine whether a tree or fence is on your property, the Land Records Division will not be able to assist you. However, a house location survey is often given to the purchaser of a home at the time of settlement. If you cannot locate your survey, you could try contacting the surveyor that prepared the survey (if known), your settlement agent, attorney, or lender to inquire about whether they have one.