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HISTORY - The Register of Deeds is a constitutional office whose duties are prescribed by State law. In 1835, the first Constitution of the State of Michigan was adopted by the Congress of the United States which established the office of Register of Deeds. There have been 14 Registers of Deeds in Leelanau County since 1863.
The REGISTER OF DEEDS office is the official office for recording all legal instruments pertaining to the transfer and encumbrances of properties in the county. Documents are recorded in the county's official records to publicly declare their existence and enactment. Anyone can research these records to identify property ownership and liens placed against property. Leelanau County records date back to 1863.
Only documents that meet the recording requirements set by the State of Michigan Legislature are recorded. This office cannot determine legal sufficiency or intent of any document offered for recording.
Michigan has a "race-notice" statute; recording a deed places subsequent purchasers on constructive notice. Thus, it is important that documents are recorded in the exact order in which they are first presented for recording at the Register of Deeds office. First in time is first in line. An error in recording might cost a property owner a hefty sum if the owner is forced to prove title, or ownership, of their property. The Register must constantly study and be aware of the laws which govern the office.
The REGISTER OF DEEDS office assists the public, lending institutions, title companies, realtors and attorneys who are among the many people who check the records and filings of instruments in the office.
We provide copies of all real estate conveyances to all assessing offices in the county for use in preparation of tax rolls.
Other supportive services provided for residents include notarial services, document certifying and record copying.
Our records are available online or in the office and can be printed for a fee. There are two public work stations in the office for searching the documents on the computer and the vault is available for record searching prior to January, 1972. Certified copies can be made from the records upon request.
The REGISTER OF DEEDS is also the Chairman of the Leelanau County Plat Board which reviews and approves all new subdivisions within the County.
The REGISTER OF DEEDS is also the office that handles Passport acceptance and submission.
Disclaimer: The Leelanau County Register of Deeds web pages are created by the Leelanau County Register of Deeds Office as a public service. All information on these pages is intended to be accurate, complete and timely; however, Leelanau County and the Leelanau County Register of Deeds do not warrant the accuracy of the information contained herein nor is it responsible for any errors or omissions and assumes no liability for its use. While the information on these pages may be about legal issues, it is not legal advice. The Leelanau County Register of Deeds does not endorse any linked sites nor do they assume any responsibility for the content or availability of those sites.