ALTA Accuracy Standards for ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys

Accuracy Standards for ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys


These Accuracy Standards address Relative Positional Accuracies for measurements that control land boundaries on ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys.

In order to meet these standards, the surveyor must assure and certify that the Relative Positional Accuracies resulting from the measurements made on the survey do not exceed that which is allowable.

If the size or configuration of the property to be surveyed or the relief, vegetation or improvements on the property will result in survey measurements for which the allowable Relative Positional Accuracies will be exceeded, the surveyor must alternatively certify as to the Relative Positional Accuracy that was otherwise achieved on the survey.


"Relative Positional Accuracy" means the value expressed in feet or meters that represents the uncertainty due to random errors in measurements in the location of any point on a survey relative to any other point on the same survey at the 95 percent confidence level.


The lines and corners on any property survey have uncertainty in location which is the result of: (1) availability and condition of reference monuments, (2) occupation or possession lines as they may differ from record lines, (3) clarity or ambiguity of the record descriptions or plats of the surveyed tracts and its adjoiners and (4) Relative Positional Accuracy.

The first three sources of uncertainty must be weighed as evidence in the determination of where, in the professional surveyor's opinion, the boundary lines and corners should be placed. Relative Positional Accuracy is related to how accurately the surveyor is able to monument or report those positions.

Of these four sources of uncertainty, only Relative Positional Accuracy is controllable, although due to the inherent error in any measurement, it cannot be eliminated. The first three can be estimated based on evidence; Relative Positional Accuracy can be estimated using statistical means.

The surveyor shall, to the extent necessary to achieve the standards contained herein, (1) compensate or correct for systematic errors, including those associated with instrument calibration, (2) select the appropriate equipment and methods, and use trained personnel; and (3) use appropriate error propagation and other measurement design theory to select the proper instruments, field procedures, geometric layouts, and computational procedures to control random errors.

If radial survey methods, GPS, or other acceptable technologies or procedures are used to locate or establish points on the survey, the surveyor shall apply appropriate procedures in order to assure that the allowable Relative Positional Accuracy of such points is not exceeded.

Computation of Relative Positional Accuracy

Relative Positional Accuracy may be tested by: (1) comparing the relative location of points in a survey as measured by an independent survey or higher accuracy or (2) the results of a minimally constrained, correctly weighted least square adjustment of the survey.

Allowable Relative Positional Accuracy for Measurements Controlling Land Boundaries on ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys 0.07 feet (or 20mm) + 50 ppm

No guidelines are available for this form at this time.