2005 Regular Session
To: Business and Financial Institutions
By: Senator(s) Michel, Flowers
AN ACT TO CLARIFY THE DISCLOSURE OF NONMATERIAL FACTS OR SUSPICIONS ASSOCIATED WITH REAL PROPERTY IN REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS; TO AMEND SECTION 89-1-501, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, IN CONFORMITY; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. (1) The fact or suspicion that real property is or was:
(a) The site of a natural death, suicide, homicide or felony crime (except for illegal drug activity that affects the physical condition of the property, its physical environment or the improvements located thereon);
(b) The site of an act or occurrence that had no effect on the physical condition of the property, its physical environment or the improvements located thereon;
(c) Owned or occupied by a person affected or exposed to any disease not known to be transmitted through common occupancy of real estate including, but not limited to, the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS);
does not constitute a material fact that must be disclosed in a real estate transaction. A failure to disclose such nonmaterial facts or suspicions shall not give rise to a criminal, civil or administrative action against the owner of such real property, a licensed real estate broker or any affiliated licensee of the broker.
(2) A failure to disclose in any real estate transaction any information that is provided or maintained, or is required to be provided or maintained, in accordance with Section 45-33-21 through Section 45-33-57, shall not give rise to a cause of action against an owner of real property, a licensed real estate broker or any affiliated licensee of the broker. Likewise, no cause of action shall arise against any licensed real estate broker or affiliated licensee of the broker for revealing information to a seller or buyer of real estate in accordance with Section 45-33-21 through Section 45-33-57.
(3) Failure to disclose any of the facts or suspicions of facts described in subsections (1) and (2) shall not be grounds for the termination or rescission of any transaction in which real property has been or will be transferred or leased. This provision does not preclude an action against an owner of real estate who makes intentional or fraudulent misrepresentations in response to a direct inquiry from a purchaser or prospective purchaser regarding facts or suspicions that are not material to the physical condition of the property including, but not limited to, those factors listed in subsections (1) and (2).
SECTION 2. Section 89-1-501, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
89-1-501. (1) The provisions of Sections 89-1-501 through 89-1-523 apply only with respect to transfers by sale, exchange, installment land sale contract, lease with an option to purchase, any other option to purchase or ground lease coupled with improvements, of real property on which a dwelling unit is located, or residential stock cooperative improved with or consisting of not less than one (1) nor more than four (4) dwelling units, when the execution of such transfers is by, or with the aid of, a duly licensed real estate broker or salesperson.
(2) There are specifically excluded from the provisions of Sections 89-1-501 through 89-1-523:
(a) Transfers pursuant to court order, including, but not limited to, transfers ordered by a probate court in administration of an estate, transfers pursuant to a writ of execution, transfers by any foreclosure sale, transfers by a trustee in bankruptcy, transfers by eminent domain, and transfers resulting from a decree for specific performance.
(b) Transfers to a mortgagee by a mortgagor or successor in interest who is in default, transfers to a beneficiary of a deed of trust by a trustor or successor in interest who is in default, transfers by any foreclosure sale after default, in an obligation secured by a mortgage, transfers by a sale under a power of sale or any foreclosure sale under a decree of foreclosure after default in an obligation secured by a deed of trust or secured by any other instrument containing a power of sale, or transfers by a mortgagee or a beneficiary under a deed of trust who has acquired the real property at a sale conducted pursuant to a power of sale under a mortgage or deed of trust or a sale pursuant to a decree of foreclosure or has acquired the real property by a deed in lieu of foreclosure.
(c) Transfers by a fiduciary in the course of the administration of a decedent's estate, guardianship, conservatorship or trust.
(d) Transfers from one co-owner to one or more other co-owners.
(e) Transfers made to a spouse, or to a person or persons in the lineal line of consanguinity of one or more of the transferors.
(f) Transfers between spouses resulting from a decree of dissolution of marriage or a decree of legal separation or from a property settlement agreement incidental to such a decree.
(g) Transfers or exchanges to or from any governmental entity.
(h) Transfers of real property on which no dwelling is located.
(i) The provisions of Section 1 of Senate Bill
No. 2927, 2005 Regular Session.
SECTION 3. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2005.