Bulletin: CA2015001

Date:
August 24, 2015
To:
All California Issuing Offices
RE:
UNDERWRITING - Insuring After a Tax Deed

This bulletin has been partially replaced by MU2016005.

Dear Associates:

This Bulletin modifies and updates Bulletin CA000039.

Per CA000039, we generally do not insure title to property acquired by tax deed, unless:

  1. The tax deed holder obtains quitclaim deeds from the original owner and releases/waivers from all foreclosed lienholders (e.g. lenders), or
  2. The tax deed holder successfully concludes a quiet title action, and the applicable appeal period has elapsed with no appeal being filed; or
  3. The agent or affiliate undertakes an inquiry into all aspects of the proceeding and confirms that all required procedures were satisfied.  

With the advent of Title Tax Services, we do not undertake the inquiry referenced in #3 above. That is replaced by receipt of a valid Title Tax Services “Foreclosure Due Process Certification”. Information about and procedures for dealing with Title Tax Services is found in CA000039.

When insuring title in reliance on the Certificate, the following procedures and guidelines apply.

A.   You may only insure a bona fide purchaser from the tax deed holder, and the purchase moneylender in that transaction. 

B.   You may only issue your title insurance policy after the expiration of one year following the recordation of the tax deed; however, you must issue your title insurance policy within 6 months of the date of the Certificate, or require a reissued, updated Certificate.

C.   You must confirm that the property is vacant, and if not, that the tenant is not the original owner or someone claiming possessory rights under the original owner.

Any issuance of insurance above the amount of $300,000 with a Tax Title Certificate requires the approval of an STG Underwriter.

When insuring title without quitclaim deeds (#1 above), and without a final quiet title judgment (#2 above), and without a Tax Title Certificate, the following procedures and guidelines apply:

You may issue title insurance 4 years after the recordation of the tax deed when: 

  1. You have confirmed that the property is vacant, and if not, that the tenant is not the original owner or someone claiming possessory rights under the original owner.
  2. You have confirmed that no appeal to the Board of Supervisors has been made, and if it has, that the resolution of that appeal was to uphold the validity of the tax deed.
  3. You have confirmed that there is no bankruptcy filed by the original owner, which may serve to extend the appeal period.
  4. You have confirmed that there is no notice of litigation pending relating to the validity of the tax deed.
  5. You have obtained the approval of an STG Underwriter.

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:
CA000039 Insuring Tax Deeds (Non-Judicial Foreclosure)
Underwriting Manual:
None
Exceptions Manual:
None
Forms:
None