Register of Deeds
Lynette Murphy - Register of Deeds
Karla Kerr - Deputy
PO Box 265
Onida, SD 57564-0265
Tele: (605) 258-2331
Fax: (605) 258-2884

Local Archives
Your county register of deeds office can most appropriately be thought of as a library of local records. This office is a storage facility for a host of local documents. From land title transfers to birth, marriage and death records, this office has a wealth of information about the local population. Although these are only a few of the documents recorded in this office, they remain some of the most widely requested by the general public. One reason the public may visit this office is to access documents for research known as genealogy. Genealogy is the study of one’s ancestry, or more simply, tracing one’s family heritage. The register of deeds office is a vital resource for people trying to discover their family tree. Please visit our Links of Interest page for more helpful information.

Recording Documents
Documents brought to the register of deeds office are recorded, which is an official method for documenting the time and the date a legal instrument is placed in the public record. This is necessary because not only does this office record all instruments brought to them including property deeds, but everything else that affects that property. Instruments affecting property deeds such as a lein on a house or a mortgage, must be recorded with date, hour and minute of the recording so as to give notice to the public that another party has an interest in that property. This vital function helps maintain an orderly transfer of title to property. In addition to recording deeds, the register of deeds also records each mortgage, plat and lease which provides a record when doing a thorough title search. Without this local central office to record and maintain these records, society as well as real estate professionals would face an unreliable system for buying and selling property. In this function, the register of deeds office is essential to bankers, abstract companies, real estate agents, land developers and the public in providing an orderly method for documenting changes in property. This offices also records such documents as marriage licenses, birth and death certificates and burial permits. Other documents include mining claims, county poor liens, mechanics liens, federal and state tax liens (until 2009), hospital liens, fictitious names and military discharges.

Recording Fees

Fees charged by the county register of deeds are generally set by the state legislature, and the monies collected are deposited into the county general fund. These fees are used to offset the costs of providing services to customers that use this office. Since the primary funding source for providing services to county citizens comes from property taxes, it is necessary to charge these “user fees”. This is one of the few county government offices that has the ability to alleviate some of the costs associated with providing vital services, from the property taxpayer to the actual user of that office.

Recording deeds, mortgages and all other instruments not specifically named
  • $30.00 first 50 pages
  • $2.00 each additional page
Certified copy of any instrument of record, including certificate and official seal
  • $5.00 first pages
  • $1.00 each additional page
Uncertified copy
  • $1.00 per page 
Birth, Death and Marriage Certificates
  • $15.00
Filing and indexing a bill of sale, seed grain lien, or thresher’s lien
  • $30.00 first 50 pages
  • $2.00 each additional page
Oil, gas and mineral leases, and other documents relating to these areas
  • $30.00 first 50 pages
  • $2.00 each additional page
Military Discharges
  • No fee to file or for certified copies

Fees paid by licensed abstracter are set by the board of county commissioners and my not exceed the actual cost to the county for providing such copies.

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