Recording Information

The register of deeds and her staff are barred by law from the practice of law. Therefore, we are not allowed to assist in or advise citizens on how to prepare documents, or answer questions of a legal nature. The role of the register is to simply record and index the instruments presented to her after she has determined that all statutory and locally adopted applicable prerequisites to recording have been met.


Once a document is recorded in the real property books it becomes a public record. This means that it is available for public inspection and copies may be purchased by anyone. The purpose of making property records public records is to help insure property rights and avoid deceits and lawsuits. Anyone can research property records to identify the property owner and/or any possible liens against the property.


  • You may come to our office in Room #106 of the Duplin County Courthouse Annex located in downtown Kenansville during normal business hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday, except holidays.
  • You may also send documents to our office by mail or parcel carrier to be recorded as long as the proper fees are included. Our physical address is: Duplin County Register of Deeds, 118 Duplin Street , Room #106 Duplin County Courthouse Annex, Kenansville, NC 28349. Please call our office for more details or assistance.


  • The fee for recording Property Instruments in general is $26 for the first fifteen pages and $4 for each additional page over fifteen.
  • The fee for recording a Deed is $26 for the first fifteen pages and $4 for each additional page over fifteen.
  • The fee for recording a Deed of Trust and Mortgage is $64 for the first thirty-five pages and $4 for each additional page over thirty-five.

  • Multiple instruments presented as one require an additional $10 fee per additional instrument. A document contains multiple instruments if it contains two or more instruments each of which is separately executed and acknowledged and could be recorded alone.
  • Debit and credit card payments are not accepted for those fees associated with the recording of real property instruments and the payment of the North Carolina excise tax.


A few of the most common prerequisites to recording are:

  • Generally all instruments presented to the register of deeds for recording shall be the original document containing original signatures, and proof of acknowledgement or notarization.
  • All deeds and deeds of trust drawn within the state of North Carolina are required to have the name of the person or law firm who drafted the instrument on the first page of the instrument.
  • Recording fees must be paid to the register of deeds before any instrument is filed or registered unless the instrument offered for recording may, by statute, be recorded without charge.
  • If the instrument is a conveyance of real property (other than deeds of trust or mortgages) it must reflect the amount of Excise Tax to be paid by the Grantor at a rate of $2.00 per $1000.00 – except when the transfer is:
    • By operation of law
    • By lease for a term of years
    • By or pursuant to the provision of a will
    • By intestacy
    • By gift
    • By merger or consolidation
  • North Carolina law requires that all instruments presented on paper must conform to recording standards as set out in G.S. 25-9-521
  • In accordance with a Duplin County ordinance the register of deeds cannot record a property conveyance (other than a deed of trust or mortgage) unless it has a certification by the tax assessor/collector. The tax assessor/collector’s or his designee’s certification indicates that he has obtained adequate information concerning the location of the property, that the parcel identification number (PIN#) is affixed to the first page of the instrument and that there are no delinquent ad valorem or other taxes owed that may constitute a lien against the property described in the conveyance.

The above information is not meant to be construed as being totally inclusive. Any instrument presented for recording is judged on an individual basis and is subject to all applicable North Carolina laws and local ordinances.