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ALTA Record Description Revision per Attorney

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ARMichael
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Working on an ALTA for a deeded property. The record description provided in the title commitment is sufficient other than excluding a portion of land deeded to the county for a road widening.

I noted on the survey that the description does not take into account said widening deeds.

Attorney wants me to put a saving and accepting note underneath the record description. They are not updating the title commitment. This doesn’t sit well with me. Any thoughts? 

Minimum standards require the current record description or a new description with a statement of why it was prepared, and in this case, how the description differs from that of record.

If I create a new description, in my mind, it needs to comply with Maryland minimum standards of practice. Otherwise, I’m not seeing a good disclaimer note to put. “Description Provided by Attorney. Does not describe same property as record description?” Then nobody’s problem is solved. 

My initial thoughts are to provide a completely new description if they want me to stick my neck out. Like to hear what you all think, see if I’m over (or likely under) thinking.

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PLS9196
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Posted by: @armichael

Working on an ALTA for a deeded property. The record description provided in the title commitment is sufficient other than excluding a portion of land deeded to the county for a road widening.

I noted on the survey that the description does not take into account said widening deeds.

Attorney wants me to put a saving and accepting note underneath the record description. They are not updating the title commitment. This doesn’t sit well with me. Any thoughts? 

Minimum standards require the current record description or a new description with a statement of why it was prepared, and in this case, how the description differs from that of record.

If I create a new description, in my mind, it needs to comply with Maryland minimum standards of practice. Otherwise, I’m not seeing a good disclaimer note to put. “Description Provided by Attorney. Does not describe same property as record description?” Then nobody’s problem is solved. 

My initial thoughts are to provide a completely new description if they want me to stick my neck out. Like to hear what you all think, see if I’m over (or likely under) thinking.

My first question is why are we not on a conference call with the Title Company discussing why the proposed deed language (PTR description) does not exclude (except) the road widening. Your state laws may vary. 

 

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Brad Ott
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What harm would be done in complying with the request and creating the new slightly different legal description under a new heading not called Record Legal Description, not called Survey Legal Description, but called Attorney Requested Legal Description?

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ARMichael
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@brad-ott probably none, and that is certainly an option. My worry was that I’ll still need to note that the record description does not accurately describe the surveyed property. I was wondering if that would meet resistance, since they want me to remove my note. Thanks Brad

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Jitterboogie
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@brad-ott 

Nothing at all wrong, except the attorney will probably complain that you included them into the direct line of fire for liability. Which is why they want the Surveyor to take the point.

 

My $0.02

And IANAL and IANAS

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ARMichael
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@jitterboogie yes i like Brads idea, I was toying with the general idea, but Im hoping to ward off any expected resistance

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LA Stevens
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Remember you are the professional and if it is under your purview/licensing requirements, I don't believe it would relieve you of liability to follow the attorney's request. 

In fact, squirrel notes can prove that you were negligent in doing your job.  Be careful and good luck.

If he wants you to fix the description, do it correctly based upon senior deeds.

 

 

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dmyhill
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@la-stevens 

2021 Minimum Standards:

4. Records Research -

...In order to complete an ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey, the surveyor must be provided with the following:

A. The current record description of the real property to be surveyed or, in the case of an original survey prepared for purposes of locating and describing real property that has not been previously separately described in documents conveying an interest in the real property, the current record description of the parent parcel that contains the property to be surveyed;

6. Plat or Map

B. Boundary, Descriptions, Dimensions, and Closures
i. (a) The current record description of the surveyed property, or
(b) In the case of an original survey, the current record document number of the parent tract that contains the surveyed property.
ii. Any new description of the surveyed property that was prepared in conjunction with the survey, including a statement explaining why the new description was prepared. Except in the case of an original survey, preparation of a new description should be avoided unless deemed necessary or appropriate by the surveyor and insurer. Preparation of a new description should also generally be avoided when the record description is a lot or block in a platted, recorded subdivision. Except in the case of an original survey, if a new description is prepared, a note must be provided stating (a) that the new description describes the same real estate as the record description or, (b) if it does not, how the new description differs from the record description.

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Lurker
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If there are deeds to the county, shouldn't they be of record somewhere? The title company would need to provide those deeds and then in those deeds I presume you would find a legal description of the property they came from and thus you would then be able to use an accurate and of record description of the property. Which should be the same description the attorney wants. If there are no deeds of record to the county then I would tell the attorney to go pound sand. Or you could word it "blah blah blah Your legal description blah blah blah minus any land that may have been deeded to the county, said deeds were not provided by the title company for this survey."

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ARMichael
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@lurker I may have been unclear in my original post. I have the deeds that conveyed the road widening, the record deed (and it’s description) predates them. So the title commitment listed an outdated property description. Because of that, I noted on the survey that the record description is outdated and it doesn’t account for the area conveyed to county. Their response was for me to add a saving and excepting note under the description. My issue and question is “how could this be safely and easily handled on my end?” I’m not just adding a line to the record description. I like the above idea by Brad to just note that the attorney provided it. If the attorney balks then they need to pony up for me to write a new description that complies with my local minimum standards

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Chris Bouffard
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@armichael Why not just write a new description excepting out the conveyed land and note that the original description predated the conveyances?

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John Putnam
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@armichael 

Okay, this is a pretty common situation.  When additional right-of-way is dedicated, it is unusual that new deeds for the grantor's property are recorded.  Only when some action requires a new recording would the description be revised to include the exception.

You are not adding a line to the end of the 'recorded description', you are adding a line in the legal description for a future recorded document that describes the current configuration of the property.

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holy cow
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@john-putnam 

We run across this a lot as the owner's deed description is pulled from when they acquired the property.  Later conveyances of small tracts, quite naturally, will not be shown on the parent deed unless re-recorded for some reason to show those cutouts.  Sometimes the parent deed description has been used in a later conveyance and no one really notices that the grantee isn't really getting what it says.

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John Putnam
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@holy-cow 

I'm currently working on 2 miles of rail and street right-of-way in an industrial area for the DOT and UPR.  Of the four roads intersection on the project, two properties have apparently have transferred additional R/w which does not show up on the vesting deeds.

This job has a nice little bonus that the frontage road falls entirely within the railroads right-of-way and the current valuation map does not show any agreements between the local jurisdiction and the UPR.  It will be fun to find that. 

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holy cow
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Read every word in that so-called deed to the county.  It may actually only be an easement despite some of the wording.  This has been discussed previously.

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ARMichael
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@holy-cow Fee simple conveyance in this case

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