Licensed State Land Surveyor (LSLS)

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Application Process LSLS General Exam Information Continuing Education Renewals Late Renewal

A Licensed State Land Surveyor is a surveyor licensed by the Board to survey land in which the state or the permanent school fund has an interest or perform other original surveys for the purpose of filing field notes in the General Land Office.

All documents must be submitted in hard-copy and electronic format (you can mail in your electronic submission in the form of a CD or flash drive, or, you are welcome to mail in your hard copies but email your electronic submission (licensing@pels.texas.gov). Each document has instructions on how to complete it.

Applications must be complete by January 15th to be considered for the April examination and by July 15th to be considered for the October examination. Only after all documents required are completed and submitted to the Board can an applicant be reviewed for approval. Once a decision has been reached by the Board in regard to an application, the applicant will be emailed the results of the review. If the applicant is rejected, the applicant will be told what they must supply to the Board in order for their application to become approved. Incomplete applications, miscellaneous application materials that have been sent to the Board and rejected applications will be held for a period of one year at the Board office before being discarded.  Please contact licensing at the Board office if you should need any assistance.

Application Process

The following documents/items are required to take the LSLS Exam:

Licensed State Land Surveyor (LSLS) Application

All questions must be answered. A Failure to complete any portion of the application form will disqualify your application for the Board review. This application must be accompanied by a check or money order (unless application is a military service member – see section 3).

LSLS Application Form

Application Payment

The application fee of $125.00 must be submitted with the application. This payment must be in the form of a cashier’s check or money order.  No personal checks are accepted.

References

References must be completed and sent to the board office by a professional land surveyor in a sealed envelope with their seal stamped on the back of the envelope.  The Board prefers that one of your references be a LSLS.

Reference Form (3 minimum)

Working Sketch/Preliminary Report of Findings

An applicant must create a working sketch of an area of the applicant’s choice (through the Board prefers the applicant chose an area within their own county). The sketch must embrace several surveys including the work of at least three original locating surveyors. Also, the sketch must show the complete results of all of the record investigation you make (not only at the GLO but other sources as well) and be accompanied by a preliminary report of your findings. This submission must show the source of all of the information you would assemble prior to going to the field to make a survey for vacancy or excess.

LSLS General Exam Information

An Applicant for a license as a Licensed State Land Surveyor may expect to be questioned about any or all of the following subjects on the written examination. However, the examination will not necessarily be limited to the items covered here.
Every applicant for license as a Licensed State Land Surveyor is furnished with The Professional Land Surveying Practices Act, Article 5282c, V.A.C.S. You should review current land laws found in Volume 15A Vernon’s Annotated Civil Statutes and the 2-volume set of the Texas Natural Resources Code. Your attention is specifically directed to the Articles repealed and those expressly saved from repeal in Volume 15A and to the recodified statutes as found in the Natural Resources Code. You should also review the purpose of the Professional Land Surveying Practices Act and the authority, duties, obligations, etc. of a Licensed State Land Surveyor.
It is imperative that you know the history, functions and contents of the General Land Office and their importance to a surveyor. With your application you will be required to submit a working sketch, prepared by you, of an area of your choice, preferably in your own county, embracing several surveys and including the work of at least three original locating surveyors. This sketch must show the complete results of all of the record investigation you make, not only at the General Land Office but at other sources also. The sketch must be accompanied by a preliminary report of your findings. The sketch and report (and supporting papers if necessary) must show the source of all of the information you would assemble prior to going to the field to make a survey for vacancy or excess. YOUR SKETCH WILL NOT CONSTITUTE A PART OF YOUR EXAMINATION BUT MUST BE COMPLETED TO THE BOARD’S SATISFACTION PRIOR TO YOUR BEING ADMITTED TO THE EXAM.
The following is a suggested short list of land boundary suits you should read. There are many, many others (some attorneys will tell you where the “Reporters” can be found in your community). Their cases deal with the relative dignity of field note call and other surveying matters.


30 Texas Reporter, Page 257
51 Texas Reporter, Page 331
57 Texas Reporter, Page 621
62 Texas Reporter, Page 582
Turner v. Smith 61 S.W. (2d) 792
State v. Post 169 S.W. 401
State v. Sullivan 92 S.W. (2d) 228

70 Texas Reporter, Page 704
70 Texas Reporter, Page 279
80 Texas Reporter, Page 627
99 S.W. Reporter, Page 1040
Standefer v. Vaughn 219 S.W. 484
Miller v. Yates 61 S.W. (2) 767
Holmes v. Yates 61 S.W. (2) 771


Additional recommended study material includes the 4-volume set of Lange on Texas Land Titles and the first 3 bound volumes of the Texas Surveyors Association Short Course reports with special emphasis on papers presented by GLO officials and land title attorneys.
You should make an appointment with the Director of Surveying of the General Land Office for a study session at that office prior to commencing your working sketch. At least one member of the LSLS Committee will be present. These sessions are designed to orient the examinee with the history, function and contents of the General Land Office and to answer questions regarding the duties and functions of a Licensed State Land Surveyor.

The examination will also cover the theory of surveying, practical surveying, theory and use of surveyor’s instruments, necessary calculation (including state plane coordinates) preparation of field notes, and the precedents set up by the courts for surveyors to follow in retracing or re-establishing the lines of surveys.
The morning part of the exam is closed book, the afternoon part of the exam is open book. You should bring pencils, paper, a calculator and at least two small triangles.

Continuing Education

In order to renew licensure, a surveyor must have 12 continuing education credits/hours by December 31. These must include a minimum of 3 credits/hours over the Act/Rules and/or Ethics that must be taken every year and cannot be carried over. You may, however, carry over up to eight units of other approved CE from the previous year.

Renewal

The yearly renewal period is open from November 1st to December 31st.

Late Renewals

Online

Currently unavailable. Online renewals will reopen November 1st.

Via Mail

Please use the Late Renewal and Affidavit Form (below) to renew an expired license.  Proof of Continuing Education (certificates) must also be submitted.

2020 LATE RPLS/LSLS Renewal Form and Affidavit