Recording

Effective Immediately the County Clerk's office is closed to the walk- in public for recording in an effort to practice social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic and to protect our employees and the public we serve. We are still recording documents via e-recording and mail.  If you have any questions we can still be reached via phone or email. 

The County Clerk's office is prohibited from providing legal advice, advice on how to complete documents or on which forms to use, and from accepting illegible documents.

Recording of Death Certificates

With the passage of HB 2093, we are prohibited from recording a certified copy of a death certificate if it contains medical information stating the cause of death. This amends ORS 432.124. Additionally, if a certified copy of an Oregon death certificate is presented for recording and it contains medical information related to the cause of death, or if the certified copy has been altered, the document will be rejected and returned unrecorded. 

Notice of Recording Fee Increase

Effective Monday, June 4, 2018, most documents will be assessed an additional $40 recording fee.  This is the direct result of the passage of HB 4007, for the benefit of housing-related programs for the State of Oregon. A limited number of documents are exempt; these include:

     •    Instruments that are otherwise exempt from recording or filing fees under any provision of law.
     •    Any satisfaction of judgement or certificate of satisfaction of judgement.
     •    Internal county government instruments not otherwise charged a recording or filing fee.
     •    Affidavits of Annual Assessment (mining claims).
     •    Warrants issued by the Employment Department pursuant to ORS 657.396, 657.642, and 657.646.
     •    A certified copy of a judgement, a lien record abstract as described in ORS 18.170 or a satisfaction of judgement noticed by recordation of a lien record abstract.
     •    Instruments presented for recording by the Department of Revenue or County Tax Collector.

The $5 fee for additional pages will not be affected. Documents submitted with insufficient fees will be returned unrecorded.

E-Recording Services

The Columbia County Clerk’s office offers electronic document recording (E-Recording) .We currently contract with Simplifile.

Recording fees:

  • $91 for the first page
  • $5 for each additional page
  • each additional transaction embodied in one document is $5.00 extra
  • there is an additional $20.00 fee for a non-standard document
  • judgements involving property are $91.00 for the first page and $5.00 for each additional page.

Exceptions:

  • Satisfaction of Judgments - $5 per page
  • Military Discharge DD214 - no charge 
  • Documents labeled Liens
    • $76 for the first page
    • $5 for each additional page

First Page Requirements

The first page shall contain the following information (ORS 205.234).  If not on the first page, an additional fee of $20 will be charged (ORS 205.327). A cover page when properly prepared that reflects your transaction may be used to when presenting the document for recording (ORS 205.234(2) in order to avoid the non-conforming fee. See an example of a cover page. 

  • Name(s) of the transaction(s) clearly labeled. A document describing two or more transactions between the same parties and involving the same properties, recordable as separate documents, may be recorded when the document is labeled with the names of the transaction described therein (ORS 205.236). A fee of $5 shall be charged for recording each additional transaction.
  • Names of the parties. Names of all parties must be listed on the first page. (ORS 205.234).
  • Name and address of assignee. For instruments, assigning a mortgage or trust deed the name and address of assignee must be listed on the first page. (ORS 205.234).
  • Return To. The name and address of the person to whom the document will be returned (ORS 205.180).
  • Tax Statements. The name and address where tax statements would be sent (ORS 93.260). Required on documents conveying or contracting to convey fee title.
  • Consideration. The true and actual consideration paid (ORS 93.030). Required on documents conveying or contracting to convey fee title.
  • County Clerk Lien Records. Lien amount is shown on the first page (ORS 205.125(1) (c) and (e)
  • Mortgage Electronic Registration System. ???

Other Requirements (ORS 205.232)

  • The weight of the paper must be not less than 20-pound opaque paper.
  • The paper must not be larger than 14" long and 8 1/2" wide.
  • The printed or written text must be 8-point type or larger.

County Recording Label Preferences

  • Please leave a blank space on the upper right corner of the document, 4” wide by 2” high for placement of our recording label on the first page of your document. 
  • If a blank space is not available, our recording label will be placed on a certificate page and added to your document.  An additional $5.00 will be assessed for adding a certificate page. 
  • A recording label will not be placed in the body of the document (excluding the title of the transaction).
Clerk Quick Links
230 Strand St.
Columbia County Courthouse Annex
St. Helens,
OR
97051
Fax: 503-397-7266

Monday - Friday
Open to the public via Phone and Email only.
Recording of Documents
9 a.m. - 4 p.m., by Mail and E-recording only
Passports
Not Accepting at this time
Marriage Licenses
Not Accepting at this time
County Clerk
Elizabeth Huser
Elections
Donald Clack
Debbie Klug