What is a certificate of compliance?

A Certificate of Compliance is a legal recorded document which certifies that a parcel of land complies with the Subdivision Map Act. In other words, it is a document that states Kern County accepts the fact that a particular parcel of real property has been legally created.

There are a number of different ways to subdivide real property. The most common way is by tract map, parcel map, or parcel map waiver. These three (3) processes are recognized by the State of California and Kern County as being legal means of subdividing. However, many parcels were created long before these three (3) processes became widely accepted. Generally, if a parcel was created without using one (1) of these processes, yet was created by recorded deed prior to March 4, 1972, then it is considered to have been legally created. A Certificate of Compliance is the tool used by the County to inform title companies, lenders, and the general public that such parcels comply with State and local subdivision laws.