Bulletin: NC2014002

Date:
December 11, 2014
To:
All North Carolina Issuing Offices
RE:
UNDERWRITING - Mecklenburg County 2011 Revaluation Review - Exceptions for Tax Pending Appeals, Re-Assessment, Re-Valuation, Interest, and/or Penalties

Dear Associates:

Beginning October 1, 2013, in accordance with Session law 2013-362, all real property in Mecklenburg County will be reviewed in order to correct property values from the 2011 Revaluation. Notices of value will be mailed to property owners reflecting the value determined by the review. Owners whose property value is lowered will be eligible for refunds with interest. In cases where a property value is raised, taxes will be assessed retroactively (back to 1/1/2011) with no penalty. Property owners not satisfied with their values will be able to appeal.

In light of the Revaluation Review and the potential for the retroactive assessment of additional property taxes, the Company requires that all residential owner’s, commercial owner’s and loan policies for property located in Mecklenburg County contain a specific Schedule B Exception for these matters. 

The Exception should, in substance, provide as follows: 

"Any additional taxes, interest, and/or penalties which may be assessed for prior tax years by virtue of adjustment, re-appraisal, re-assessment, re-valuation, appeal or other amendment to the tax records of Mecklenburg County."

Please contact your underwriter if you are asked to remove this exception for any loan or owner’s policy of title insurance. 

In addition, if the property is subject to re-assessment or a pending appeal at closing, the agent must fully disclose the fact to all parties and inform them that there will be no coverage for this matter. The disclosure should be in writing and executed by the parties acknowledging these facts. The disclosure should be incorporated into the closing documents and provide, in substance, as follows:

"Seller and Purchaser acknowledge that the subject property currently is, or, after closing, may be subject to re-assessment or pending appeal for property taxes by Mecklenburg County. Seller and Purchaser further acknowledge that the owner’s policy of title insurance to be issued by Stewart Title Guaranty Company shall not provide insurance coverage for any additional taxes, interest and/or penalties for prior tax years by virtue of adjustment, re-appraisal, re-assessment, re-valuation, appeal or other amendment to the tax records of Mecklenburg County. 

In a refinance transaction, the borrower should sign an indemnity that they will be responsible for any additional amounts that may become due.

Any pending appeal should be disclosed in the title commitment as follows: 

"Stewart Title Guaranty Company ("The Company") has information that the Mecklenburg County taxes are under appeal for Parcel ID ____________________. A possible lien for additional taxes may become due and payable by reason of rebill, increased or amended assessment. The Company does not provide any insurance as to any amounts due and payable under this appeal."

Exception should be taken for the tax year under appeal and any subsequent years. 

If you have any questions relating to this or other bulletins, please contact a Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter.

For on-line viewing of this and other bulletins, please log onto www.vuwriter.com.

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