Bulletin: WI000002

Date:
May 17, 1994
To:
Wisconsin Stewart Agents
RE:
Recent Legislation Affecting Underwriting

Dear Associates:

Our Legislature has been busy enacting title related laws. A brief comment on several of these enactments follows.

Act 143 provides instances when a court may terminate a trust. Please note the substantial increase from $5,000 to $50,000 contained in the last sentence.

Act 145 requires, in most instances, that a document must contain the complete legal description to be filed or recorded. The description may either be included on the document or attached. Any document affecting an original mortgage or land contract must contain the volume and page of the original document.

Act 148 addresses the statutory power of attorney by amending and repealing language of the current statute. Section 1 of the Act alters what constitutes a legally sufficient statutory power of attorney. As the remaining provisions of the Act and subsequent Act 299 are in conflict, suffice it to say that when dealing with statutory powers of attorney you should conclusively determine that the power has not been revoked, otherwise do not rely on that power of attorney.

Act 167 by its creation of Section 30.133 states that an owner may not convey riparian rights by easement other than a right to cross the owner's land for access to the water. This section clarifies and/or overturns case law on this subject, and serves as a reminder that we must be wary on water rights and related issues.

Act 176 continues the current documents filing/recording fees, eliminating the sunset provisions in the current law.

Act 177 allows counties with less than 500,000 population to enact ordinances requiring the tax key number on documents. Please watch for such ordinances.

Act 214 in Section 15 amends our Uniform Federal Lien Registration Act by providing that the new federal tax lien remains a lien for eleven years and sixty days.

Act 391 creates Section 75.115 which precludes the loss of mineral rights based on the failure to pay taxes by the fee simple owner.

Act 453 dealing with environmental liens will be dealt with in a separate memo. As it is 16 pages long, copies will not be provided.

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:
11.10 Legislation
Exceptions Manual:
WI Descriptions
 
WI Minerals
 
WI Powers of Attorney
 
WI Trusts
 
WI Wetlands
Forms:
None