Guide to filing a mechanics lien in Santa Cruz County

Where is the Santa Cruz County Recorder's Office that files mechanic liens?

You can file your mechanic liens in person or by mail.

In Person

You can visit the Santa Cruz County Recorder’s Office in person located at:

701 Ocean St, Room 230
Santa Cruz, CA 95060.
Tel: (831) 454-2800
Fax: (831) 454-3169


M-F 8:00AM – 12:00PM
1:00PM – 4:00PM


M-F 8:00PM – 12:00PM
1:00PM – 3:00PM

By Mail:

You can mail your document to:

Santa Cruz County Recorder
701 Ocean St, Room 230
Santa Cruz, CA 95060.

What is Santa Cruz County's Recording Backlog?

The Santa Cruz County Recorder does not publicly disclose information on recording backlog. Your request is processed upon receipt, however note that you can expect to receive your original recorded document back in the mail within 6-8 weeks. If you’d like to know how long processing your lien might take, you can give the County office a call at (530) 225-5671.

Should my mechanics lien be filed in Santa Cruz County, or some other county?

If the property is located in Santa Cruz County, then yes, you will want to record your lien with the Santa Cruz County Recorder’s office.

What are Santa Cruz County's requirements for recording a mechanics lien?

All documents presented for recording must include or comply with the Santa Cruz County Recorder’s general recording requirements. They are as follows:

1. The property must be located in Santa Cruz County. (CC1169)
2. The document must be authorized or required by law to be recorded. (GC 29201)
3. The document must be submitted with the proper fees and taxes. (GC 6301, 27201, 27261)
4. The document must be in compliance with state and local laws.
5. The document should Name the person requesting recording. (GC 27361.6)
6. The document should state the Name and address to whom the document should be returned, fill in “Recording Requested By and Mail To”. (GC 27361.6) ·
7. The document must be legible enough to produce a readable photographic record. (GC 27201, 27361.6, 27361.7) See legibility requirements below.
8. Signatures must be original unless the document is a certified copy issued by the appropriate custodian of the public record. (GC 27201b, GC 28288, Evid Code 1530)
9. The document must be properly acknowledged, unless exempt. California requires an all-purpose acknowledgement. (GC 27201, 27289, 27285, 27287, 27288, CC 1189)
10. The Assessor’s Parcel Number is required on deeds by local Ordinance. (R&T 11911.1)
11. The notary seal must be legible for a microfilm reproduction . (GC 8207)

Note that the the Santa Cruz County Recorder does provide any legal forms or notarial services. Various types of forms may be purchased at office supply or stationary stores. Once you have the appropriate form, you may prepare it yourself, consult legal counsel or contact a local title company or escrow company.

What are the margin & page size requirements to file a lien in Santa Cruz County?

All documents must comply with the standard 8 1/2″ by 11″ paper size and must not exceed 8 1/2″ by 14″. Any document including any sheet not exactly 8 1/2″ by 11″ incurs additional recording fee.

Attached exhibits should be on a separate page and properly marked.

The first page should have a return address space on the top left that is 2 1/2″ down and 3 1/2″ across.

On the top right, allow a blank space 2 1/2″ down and 5″ across for the recording. If there is not enough space for the Recorders Stamp on the first page, an additional $3.00 will be charged for a COVER PAGE. This document is in Acrobat PDF format which is placed on top of the document to provide the necessary space to accommodate the Recording Stamp.

How can I make payment to the Santa Cruz County Recorder?

The Santa Cruz County Recorder accepts most major forms of payment including cash, check, money order, and most credit cards. You can make payment to the Santa Cruz County recorder in person at the time of filing. All applicable fees must be paid at the time of recording.

What are the filing fees to record a mechanics lien in Santa Cruz County?

The Santa Cruz County Recorder’s regular recording fee is $17.00 for the first page and $3.00 for each additional page.

Additional Recording Fees

Non-conforming page size: $3.00 for each page other than 8 1/2 x 11

Penalty print fee (9 lines per vertical inch or 22 characters per
Horizontal inch): $1.00 per page

Indexing fees: $1.00 for each additional reference indexed

$1.00 for each additional name indexed (each group of 10 names after 1st)

How do I get a recorded copy of my lien from Santa Cruz County's Recorders Office?

You may request a recorded copy of your lien in person or by mail after paying a copy fee.

Copy Fees

Official Copy: $1.00 for each page
Certification under Seal: $3.00 per document
Conformed Copy: $1.00 per page

Do I have the right to file a mechanics lien in Santa Cruz County, California?

Determining whether you do or do not have a mechanics lien right can be tricky. Generally speaking, every state gives those who have furnished labor and/or materials to a construction project the right to file a mechanics lien if unpaid for the furnishing. The same is true in California. However, there are some state-specific limitations as to who is qualified to file a mechanics lien that is important when considering whether you have the right to file a mechanics lien in Santa Cruz County, California.

Great and detailed information about this is available on our California Mechanics Lien Resources Page.

What is the fee to file a California Preliminary Notice in Santa Cruz County?

The fee to file a California Preliminary Notice in Santa Cruz County is $37.00.