Homeownership continues to be the dream of many citizens of San Bernardino County. Years of work and sacrifice often precede the biggest financial commitment of a person’s life. Sadly, homeownership dreams turn into nightmares when fraudsters, opportunists, and unscrupulous real estate practitioners commit crimes and inflict serious financial harm upon victims.

The San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office maintains a real estate fraud unit (REF) dedicated to investigating and criminally prosecuting individuals and businesses for fraudulent activity surrounding real estate.

The unit consists of peace officer investigators, deputy district attorneys, and a professional staff.


If you believe you are the victim of real estate fraud, please download our complaint form and instructions (below). You may also contact our unit at or call (909) 382-7700.



NOTE: If you are in danger of foreclosure, you must take individual action to protect your property. The district attorney can not represent you in foreclosure or loan modification lawsuits or negotiations.


Whenever a transaction occurs relating to real property, documents may be filed and recorded with the County’s Assessor-Recorder-Clerk. This is normal. Sometimes, however, a person can wrongfully request that a document be recorded to change the status of a property without the property owner’s knowledge or approval. The property owner might become a victim of fraud.

We believe that notifying property owners of recently recorded documents is the best way to prevent them from becoming victims of fraud. To assist property owners in identifying possible fraud, Informational Letters are mailed when certain documents are recorded against their property, such as Deeds. Included with the letter are the first two pages of the document that were recorded. 


Purchase or sale of a houseGrant Deed
Changing or correcting who owns the property by correcting an existing owner or adding or deleting names on the property title.Grant Deed or Corrected Grant Deed
Quit Claim Deed
Interspousal Transfer Deed
Mortgage, “Second Mortgage,” or Equity Line of CreditDeed of Trust
Refinance of an existing home loanDeed of Trust
Placing a property into a trustDeed of Trust
Beginning of a foreclosureNotice of Default


If you don’t see your question below, please email

If you knew about and agreed to the transaction mentioned in the Informational Letter, you do not need to take any action. The Informational Letter is a service provided by the county to keep people informed.

The vast majority of documents filed and recorded with the Assessor-Recorder-Clerk are lawful. We have tried to identify the types of documents that most likely would be filed and recorded without the owner’s knowledge or consent. When those documents are recorded, Informational Letters are mailed. Again, the vast majority of these are lawfully filed and recorded.

Please download, complete and send a complaint form to our office:

San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office
Workers’ Compensation Fraud Unit
303 West 3rd Street
4th floor
San Bernardino, CA 92415

The Informational Letter is sent to the person who owned the property just before the document was recorded. For example, if a house is sold, a Deed document is filed and recorded to change ownership to the buyer. The Informational Letter is then sent to the seller, who is the person that owned the property just before the Deed was recorded. If you do not have any relationship to the property, it is possible that the Informational Letter was sent to you by mistake. Please contact the Assessor-Recorder-Clerk at (909) 387-8306 to report the mistake.

Please call the Assessor-Recorder-Clerk at (909) 387-8306 to find out how to make corrections. The information contained in the Informational Letter or recorded document (property owner, property address, Assessor Parcel Number, and Recorded Document number) is obtained from the records kept by the Assessor-Recorder-Clerk.

The Informational Letter program only sends the first two pages of the document that was filed and recorded. You may obtain copies of documents from the Assessor-Recorder-Clerk. Please visit their website for possible fees. Their website is