Bulletin: WA000050

Date:
December 20, 2000
To:
All Issuing Offices in Washington
RE:
Tenants Right of First Refusal - Mobile Home Parks

Dear Associates:

In 1993, the Washington State Legislature, concerned with the availability of mobile home park housing, adopted chapter 59.23 Revised Code of Washington (RCW), the Act. RCW 59.23.005. This Act gives mobile home park tenants a right of first refusal when the park owner decides to sell a mobile home park. RCW 59.23.025.

To exercise a right of first refusal, the tenants must organize into "qualified tenant organization" and give the park owner written notice of "a present and continuing desire to purchase the mobile home park." RCW 59.23.015. Once the park owner has received such notice, the park owner must notify the tenants of any agreement to sell the park to a third party, as well as disclose the agreement's terms. If the park owner fails to properly notify the qualified tenant organization, a pending third party sale is voidable. RCW 59.23.030.

The Supreme Court of the State of Washington invalidated RCW 59.23 as unconstitutional on 11/9/2000. Manufactured Housing Communities v. State, 90 Wn. App. 257, 259, 951 P.2d 1142 (1998). A copy of the opinion is available from Chuck Gillespie in the Washington District Office. In view of the foregoing it is no longer necessary to raise the right of first refusal in all commitments for title insurance for the sale of mobile home parks.

THIS BULLETIN IS FURNISHED TO INFORM YOU OF CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS. AS A REMINDER, YOU ARE CHARGED WITH KNOWLEDGE OF THE CONTENT ON VIRTUAL UNDERWRITER  AS IT EXISTS FROM TIME TO TIME AS IT APPLIES TO YOU, AS WELL AS ANY OTHER INSTRUCTIONS. OUR UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS DO NOT AUTHORIZE OUR ISSUING AGENTS TO ENGAGE IN SETTLEMENTS OR CLOSINGS ON BEHALF OF STEWART TITLE GUARANTY COMPANY. THIS BULLETIN IS NOT INTENDED TO DIRECT YOUR ESCROW OR SETTLEMENT PRACTICES OR TO CHANGE PROVISIONS OF APPLICABLE UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS. CONFIDENTIAL, PROPRIETARY, OR NONPUBLIC PERSONAL INFORMATION SHOULD NEVER BE SHARED OR DISSEMINATED EXCEPT AS ALLOWED BY LAW. IF APPLICABLE STATE LAW OR REGULATION IMPOSES ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS, YOU SHOULD CONTINUE TO COMPLY WITH THOSE REQUIREMENTS.

References

Bulletins Replaced:
None
Related Bulletins:
None
Underwriting Manual:
None
Exceptions Manual:
None
Forms:
None