Wisconsin Society of Land Surveyors

Providing Support and Professional Development for Land Surveyors since 1952


Registers of Deeds and WSLS discuss CSM requirements

16 Jun 2022 1:51 PM | Joseph Tew (Administrator)



Four WSLS members served as part of a panel discussion at the Wisconsin Register of Deeds Association (WRDA) summer conference at the Ingleside Hotel in Pewaukee, Wisconsin on June 7, 2022. John Casucci, Jim Selhoff, Jeff De Muth and WSLS President Bryan Meyer were all a part of the 90-minute session. The panelists were from different parts of the state. Nearly 50 Registers were in attendance. 

The session came about due to some concerns expressed by WSLS member and past President John Casucci in an October 2021 letter to Executive Director Frank Thousand. Casucci expressed concerns over a lack of standard requirements for Certified Survey Maps statewide. Thousand shared Casucci’s concerns with the WSLS Board of Directors. President Meyer made contact with WRDA members Tiffany Ringer (Wood County), Sharon Martin (Washington County) and Staci Hoffman (Jefferson County), and plans were made for this session to take place.

Several Registers submitted questions in advance of the session to serve as talking points and to give the four panelists time to research and be ready with answers. The panelists also interacted with the RODs with questions from a land surveying perspective. 

The questions/topics discussed:

The weight of the paper used for Certified Survey Maps: While many RODs require a minimum of 24-pound paper, many RODs do not. 

Keeping the original CSM: Many Counties still do keep the original map. Some Counties do not. The Counties that do not, often return the CSM to the surveyor or the client. Some counties have an agreement with the surveyor to destroy the original CSM once it has been scanned into the ROD system. 

3” x 3” square for recording information: This topic brought some conversation since it is not necessarily listed as a requirement of Chapter 236. Other portions of statute do list the 3” x 3” square as a requirement for recorded documents. Depending on the recording system used in a particular County determines if the area is needed (often in the upper right-hand corner of the CSM).

E-Recording of Certified Survey maps: It was agreed that things are trending in the direction of e-recording but not every County is set up for that yet. It was agreed that this topic would be a good session at the WSLS Annual Institute. 

Allowing electronic signatures: Some Counties are able to accommodate electronic signatures, and some are not. Most Counties still require a “wet” signature. 

Other topics: Who enforces Chapter 236? Why does scale on a map matter? What is the biggest “pain in the …….” when we reject or refuse to record a CSM?  Cost to Surveyor? Cost to customer?  Delays?  Hurt feelings? 

One eye opening topic near the end of the session was brought to light - the fact that many young people are unable to read cursive. Both WRDA and WSLS agreed that this is a requirement of both professions in order to read older recorded documents. 

The session was remarkably focused, purposeful, and respectful. One panelist indicated that it all went very well and he believed we made inroads to some solutions in areas of mutual concern. Both WRDA and WSLS agreed that we should keep communicating. 

The end result of this session was that the RODs (led by Staci Hoffman) will formulate a spreadsheet which lists the various CSM requirements for each of the 72 counties. A document like this can go a long way toward helping surveyors know the requirements as they work in a new/different County. 

Bryan Meyer
President of Wisconsin Society of Land Surveyors

Presentation Link

posted June 16 2022 jtew

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