In Oregon, as in most states, only a court of law can decide questions of property ownership. Your land surveyor locates the boundaries of the property on the ground as described in your deed, marking the property corners with physical monuments if none exist, provides a map and documents survey results. This map will be recorded with the County Surveyor in the county in which the property is located. If conflicts exist, your land surveyor will explain why and advise on proper remedies. Only the courts can settle disputes over ownership.

Typically yes, your land surveyor will know of the existence of encroachments as a result of research. Encroachments may not have to be shown on the map submitted for filing with the county surveyor. A separate map may be necessary.

If the purpose of the project were a complete boundary survey, the answer would normally be yes. In the case of a survey for one boundary line to check the location of an improvement or fence line, possibly not. The owner should make it clear to the land surveyor what additional information should be disclosed by the survey. Practically speaking, the research necessary to survey one boundary is generally the same as surveying entire parcel. If the property has not been surveyed in a long time or boundary monuments have disappeared, a complete boundary survey is the most cost-effective.

Your land surveyor will perform the survey in accordance with the scope of work mutually agreed upon. If the scope of work calls for monumentation, property corners will be marked with steel rods or other permanent monuments with the license number of the land surveyor or the registered business name stamped on it. The property corners should be shown to the owner. A survey map will be filed whenever property corners are set indicating dimensions of property lines and other relative data as required by state law.

Prior to beginning a survey, the owner should clearly define the scope of work with the land surveyor by clarifying goals and expectations for the finished product. The more the land surveyor knows the owner’s needs, the better he/she can recommend the type of survey work needed.

Boundary and easement line disputes, gaps, and overlaps are sometimes a result of faulty legal descriptions that were originally written and recorded by persons lacking proper qualifications. It is critical to have property lines clearly described and surveyed when boundaries or easement lines are created or changed. Under current law, any newly created and most adjusted boundary lines require a survey and processing through governmental agencies. A proper survey may reduce potential boundary and easement conflicts or resolve outstanding issues. The creation or modification of boundaries or easements should only be attempted using the expertise of a professional land surveyor.