Frequently Asked Questions

What is your mailing address?
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Shelby County Register of Deeds

1075 Mullins Station Road, Suite W165

Memphis, TN 38134

What are your hours of operation?
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The office hours are from 8:00AM to 4:30PM, Monday through Friday

What methods of payment does the Register accept?
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The Register's office will accept cash, cashier's check, money order, business check, and most major credit cards.

Does the Register’s Office have my deed?
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Yes, your deed was recorded, scanned, and microfilmed in our office as a permanent record and returned to you with the recording information. You may find your original deed in your closing papers. If not, you may find a copy on our website register.shelby.tn.us or we can provide a certified copy of your deed.

How do I get a copy of my deed?
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Many documents recorded may be viewed and copied from this website at no charge as a courtesy from the Register.  Documents that are not available may be obtained by visiting the Register's Office in person, by e-mail request to register@shelbycountytn.gov, or a written request by mail.  Requests received by mail will require sufficient information for staff to retrieve, such as any names of known buyers and sellers, date, and/or the address of the property.  Copies made at the Register's Office will be $0.50 a page, excluding plats, which are $1.50 a page.

How long does it take to record a deed?
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From the time we receive your deed, it takes approximately one business day for us to record and return it in the mail. A digital copy is available on our website register.shelby.tn.us.

How much will it cost to register my deed?
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See the “Filing Tools” section of our website to calculate the correct fees and for more information on other document types.

Can I record documents online?
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The Register’s Office does not have an option for individual e-filings. Because of the setup process, it can take 48 hours or longer before customers can file online. We strongly recommend that individuals use a local real estate professional who already has an e-file account with the Register’s Office.

Is there someone in the Register’s Office who can help me fill out a Quit Claim deed and how much will it cost?
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The Register’s Office is a recording office only. We cannot provide legal advice and therefore cannot advise you on the preparation of documents. We strongly recommend that you seek the services of a real estate professional to ensure that forms are filled out and filed correctly. A Quit Claim typically costs $12 to file. A filing calculator is provided on our website register.shelby.tn.us.

Can you notarize my document?
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The Register’s Office does not have a notary public. In most cases your bank provides this service free of charge. It is a potential conflict of interest for Register employees to notarize documents filed in our office.

The forms your office provides need additional instructions on how to complete. Why can’t the Register’s staff help fill out the forms?
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The Register’s Office is a recording office only. We are not allowed to provide legal advice and therefore cannot advise you on the preparation of documents. The forms are not meant to be used without the advice of a professional.  Because incorrectly prepared documents may affect your property rights, we strongly recommend that you seek the services of a real estate professional to ensure that forms are filled out and filed correctly.

How do I add (or remove) someone from my deed?
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To add, change, or remove a name on a property you will need to have a new document prepared and have it recorded in our office. A Quit Claim Deed or Warranty Deed will need to be completed. This document will replace your previous deed. Our office cannot advise you on the preparation of this document or how you would hold title as there are several ways (right of survivorship, joint tenants, tenancy in common, husband and wife, etc.). We strongly recommend that you seek the services of a real estate professional to ensure that forms are filled out and filed correctly. However, you may act on your own behalf and prepare this document. We have blank Quit Claim and Warranty Deed forms on our website register.shelby.tn.us.

I recently paid my home off and need my deed. The bank told me to call you. How do I get a copy of the deed to my home?
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You should have received the original deed to your home when you purchased it, but may really be looking for a Trust Deed Release. Our office will be more than happy to locate a copy for you.

How do I find out if I have any liens on my property?
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Not all liens are filed with our office; sometimes they are filed with courts. Some liens/judgments are filed against the property owners’ name and attached to any real estate they may own. To determine what liens, if any, have been filed against the property you are searching, you would need to contact a real estate professional in order to receive accurate, up to date information about any liens.  However, the records of the Register's Office are open to the public and are accessible via this website or by visiting our office at one of our convenient locations.

If a property owner has died, what do I do next? How do I get the property into the heirs’ names?
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You have our deepest sympathies on the passing of your loved one. We suggest contacting the Shelby County Probate Court Clerk, 901-222-3750, to see if a will was probated. If so, the will should state who is to receive the property, and if it does, this document will serve as your deed to the property. If no will is probated, Tennessee requires one Affidavit of Heirship filed in the Register’s Office. Later, when selling your property, most title companies prefer three Affidavits of Heirship to be filled out by three different people (witnesses) that know the history of the family, one witness per form. All three documents should be filled out exactly the same, except the signature of the person executing the document. Two of the people cannot be related to you; the third person can be a family member. We strongly recommend that you seek the services of a real estate professional to ensure that forms are filled out and filed correctly. However, you may act on your own behalf and prepare this document. You may obtain these blank forms from our website register.shelby.tn.us.

What is the difference between a Quit Claim and a Warranty Deed?
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A Quit Claim Deed is a deed that conveys only the grantor's rights or interest in real estate without stating the nature of the rights and with no warranties of ownership. A Warranty Deed contains a covenant (a promise written into deeds and other instruments agreeing to performance or non-performance of certain acts, or requiring or preventing certain uses of the property) that the grantor will protect the grantee against any and all claims. In order to be certain that the correct deed is used for your situation, we strongly recommend that you seek the services of a real estate professional to ensure that forms are filled out and filed correctly.

How do I find the boundaries/survey of my property?
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Generally speaking, surveys are not recorded with government offices. The Register's Office does record plats of subdivisions showing all lots in a development, however, you would need to contact a private surveyor to perform an accurate survey of the property to determine your boundary/property lines. Tax maps and parcel boundaries are provided on our website register.shelby.tn.us, but they do not reflect accurate survey information or exact legal ownership boundaries. They are provided for general information purposes only.

Can someone help me search/find information on a property or property owner?
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Yes, however, the Register’s Office does not determine ownership of property. We only record documents that meet the requirements issued by the State of Tennessee for recording purposes. It is strongly recommended that you seek the services of a real estate professional in order to receive accurate, up to date information about ownership.

Can I find bankruptcies, divorces, or other court documents in the Register's Office?
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Bankruptcies, divorces, and other court documents are recorded and indexes as court decrees.  However, not all court documents are filed with the Register's Office.  This will vary according to requirements within a court decree or an individual's personal choice.  Therefore, to find any and all court documents related to property, we strongly recommend that you seek the services of a real estate professional.
How to I obtain a refund for overpayment of Realty Transfer and Mortgage Tax?
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The Tennessee Department of Revenue is the only authorized agency which can refund an overpayment of taxes.  To request a refund you will need the following items:

  1. Copies of the instruments filed
  2. Receipt's showing taxes paid on the instruments filed
  3. A brief statement as to the basis for the refund
  4. A completed Claim of Refund Form
  5. If the refund is in excess of $200, a completed Report of Debt form is required

The request should be mailed to:

Tennessee Department of Revenue
12th Floor Audit Division
500 Deaderick Street
Nashville, TN 37242

Additional information may be found at https://www.tn.gov/revenue.html.  You may find the Claim for Refund and Report of Debts forms in the forms section of our website.

What is the Register's Public Records Policy?
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Public Records Policy for Register of Deeds of Shelby County, Tennessee.

Can the Register of Deeds speak to my civic group or church organization?
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Yes. Please visit our contact information link at this website or call the Register of Deeds at 222-8100.