Senate Bill No. 1006

Special Act No. 99-7

An Act Validating Acts and Deeds, Valid Except for Certain Irregularities and Omissions.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. ASSESSMENTS AND TAXATION. (a) No assessment list in any town, city or borough completed prior to the effective date of this act shall be deemed invalid because the assessor:

(1) Neglected to give legal notice requiring all persons therein liable to pay taxes to bring in written or printed lists of the taxable property belonging to them, as required by law;

(2) Received from any person, before the first day of November in any given year, a list that is either not sworn to or not signed by the person giving that list;

(3) Received from any person after the first day of November in any given year, a list that is duly sworn to, but said assessor neglected to fill out a list of the property of any such person and to add thereto twenty-five per cent of the valuation thereof;

(4) Added to the list of any person or corporation making a sworn list of any property owned by such person or corporation and liable to taxation without legally notifying such person or corporation of such addition;

(5) Made out such a list for any person or corporation and increased the valuation of such person's or corporation's property above the valuation in the last-preceding grand list, and added twenty-five per cent thereto, but failed to give such person or corporation notice of such increase, where said person or corporation liable to pay taxes in any town, city or borough as a resident thereof has failed, in any year, to give in a list for such person or corporation as required by law;

(6) Did not assess and set in lists, separately, as land, house lots;

(7) Did not sign any assessment list or did not sign the assessment list of such town, city or borough collectively, but signed the same individually for districts or societies in such town, city or borough;

(8) Omitted to arrange the assessment lists in alphabetical order, or to lodge the same in the required office on or before the day designated by law, or at all;

(9) Decreased valuations after the day on which the assessment list was lodged or was required by law to be lodged in the required office, but before the date on which the abstract of such list was transmitted or was required by law to be transmitted to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management;

(10) Omitted to fill out a list for any person or corporation that failed to return a list as provided by law;

(11) Made an incorrect abstract of the assessment lists;

(12) Omitted to compare, sign, return, date or make oath to an abstract of the assessment lists of his or her town, as required by law, or omitted from such abstract any part of the list of any person;

(13) Did not take the oath required by law;

(14) Failed to return to the school or the district clerk the assessment lists of such district assessment; or

(15) Omitted from the assessment list the taxable property of any person or corporation liable to pay taxes.

(b) No assessment list in any town, city or borough completed prior to the effective date of this act shall be deemed invalid because the board of assessment appeals or the members or any member thereof:

(1) Did not take the oath required by law;

(2) Failed to give notice of the times and places of its meetings as required by law;

(3) Held its first meeting on some day other than the day provided by law for such meeting;

(4) Added to the list of any person or corporation any item of taxable property actually owned by said person or corporation without giving the notice required by law;

(5) Increased the list of any person or corporation, and added to the assessment list the name of any person or corporation without giving such person or corporation notice thereof, and the amount of such list is not excessive or unjust;

(6) Omitted to sign any assessment list or abstract thereof after the same has been examined and corrected by said board; or

(7) Failed to return the assessment list or abstract thereof to the town clerk on or before the fourth Monday of March in any year.

(c) No tax laid and imposed prior to the effective date of this act in any town, city, borough, school district or fire district shall be deemed invalid because:

(1) The assessor or board of assessors failed to transmit to the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management, when required, an abstract of the assessment lists of any town, city or borough, on or before the first day of May in each year;

(2) The proper authorities voted to levy a tax, but omitted to fix the time when such tax should become due, and the tax collector has given notice that the taxes were to become due at a certain time;

(3) A rate bill or a bill for taxes heretofore made for the collection of any tax was not made under the hands of the proper authority according to law;

(4) The selectmen of any town made their rate bill from the assessment list made and corrected by the assessor and board of assessment appeals and lodged in the town clerk's office and disregarded any illegal alteration in such list made after such list and abstract were completed and lodged in the town clerk's office as aforesaid;

(5) The warrant for the collection of any tax was not signed and attached to any rate bill as provided by law; and

(6) A mistake, irregularity or omission occurred in any of the steps preparatory to the issuance of a rate bill or bill for taxes for any tax, or in the preparation or issuance of such a rate bill or bill for taxes, or in the warrant for collection thereof, provided such mistake, irregularity or omission is not shown by the taxpayer to have made his or her tax materially greater and that notice of such bill has been given to the taxpayer.

(d) No tax lien of which a certificate to continue has been recorded prior to the effective date of this act in accordance with the procedures and within the time provided by law in the book of tax liens in the office of the clerk of the town, city or borough in which the land upon which such lien is claimed is situated, shall be deemed invalid where:

(1) The assessors failed to set a separate valuation upon separate parcels of real estate upon which such lien is claimed to exist;

(2) The time when a tax lien continued thereby became payable to the tax collector was not correctly stated in such certificate;

(3) The amount of the tax secured by such lien was or is incorrectly stated therein;

(4) The amount of the tax stated in such lien included property not liable to taxation in the town in which such lien is filed;

(5) Such certificate covers several parcels in one item;

(6) Such certificate does not specify the portion of the tax that is due from the owner of such real estate accrued upon each of such separate parcels;

(7) The property assessed for taxation was listed in the name of an agent or co-owner instead of the name of the owner or owners of the property according to the land records of the town in which such property lies;

(8) Such certificate was filed in the name of an agent of the owner or in the name of a co-owner of such land;

(9) Such certificate purports to continue, upon all real estate of any person, a lien for the entire tax that was assessed against any person or his property;

(10) The tax collector failed to make demand or levy upon goods and chattels, or failed to file a lien, until after the expiration of his or her term of office; and

(11) Such liens have been signed by a selectman instead of by the tax collector.

(e) No vote or action of any town, city or borough, or of any board or subdivision thereof, that fixes the tax rate for any given year upon the grand list wherein it is provided a discount in any amount of such tax shall be allowed the taxpayer in the event such tax is paid on or before a given date shall be deemed invalid, and no proceedings or activity thereunder or actions undertaken by the collector of taxes with reference thereto, including all obligations and securities given by him or her for the collection and payment of such taxes or for the faithful performance of his or her duties shall be deemed invalid.

(f) All obligations and securities given by any collector of taxes for the faithful performance of his or her duties shall be legal and binding.

(g) The provisions of this section shall not be construed as validating any omission to lay any tax.

(h) All assessment lists in which any clerical omission or mistake has been made may be corrected by the assessor or the board of assessment appeals provided:

(1) If the correction would result in an increase in the amount of tax due, the correction may not be made until the owner of the property is given notice of the omission or mistake and is given an opportunity to contest the omission or mistake before the board of assessment appeals;

(2) Where the clerical omission or mistake is corrected after the board of assessment appeals has completed by law its duties for any given year, no tax may be levied and collected as a result of such correction.

(i) All taxes that have been laid and imposed according to the assessment lists specified in this section may be levied and collected.

(j) Notwithstanding the foregoing, no choate or inchoate tax lien shall be validated against a purchaser for value without actual or constructive notice of such tax lien.

Sec. 2. CONDOMINIUMS. (a) No declaration submitting property under the provisions of chapter 825 of the general statutes or any amendments thereto, and no instrument by which the provisions of said chapter may be waived, shall be deemed invalid because:

(1) Said declaration or instrument was attested by one witness only or by no witnesses;

(2) Said declaration or instrument was executed only by the owners of the fee and not by the owners of other interests in the land;

(3) Said declaration or instrument was executed only by the buyer under an executory purchase or option contract with the owner of the fee and the buyer subsequently obtained title to the fee;

(4) Said declaration or instrument fails to contain a reference to a survey;

(5) A survey was not recorded simultaneously with the declaration or was not certified substantially correct by a licensed surveyor or engineer;

(6) Said declaration or instrument does not contain the name of the building;

(7) Said declaration or instrument does not contain a reference to the file number of the floor plans of the building affected thereby;

(8) The floor plans filed in the office of the town clerk do not contain a reference to the original declaration or the verified statement of a registered architect or licensed professional engineer.

(b) No deed or other instrument, including any power of attorney made for the conveyancing, mortgaging or leasing of a condominium unit in property under chapter 825 of the general statutes which deed or instrument contains a description sufficient to identify the particular unit as well as the building and land or other property in which the same is located, but which fails to include any one or more of the particulars required by statute with respect to the description of a condominium unit shall be deemed invalid because of the failure to include any one or more of such particulars required by statute.

(c) No declaration submitting the property to the provisions of chapter 828 of the general statutes, or any amendments thereto, shall be deemed invalid because:

(1) The declaration or amendment thereto shall fail to contain any provision, statement or information required by statute to be included in such declaration or amendment;

(2) The declaration or amendment shall fail to state the formula or formulas used to establish allocation of interests among units, provided such declaration or amendment shall set forth an allocation of such interests among all units declared in the declaration and all amendments thereto;

(3) The allocation of interests among units set forth in the declaration or amendment shall not in the aggregate equal one hundred per cent of all such interests, provided the aggregate of such allocations of interest shall equal at least ninety-nine per cent of all such interests;

(4) Any survey or plans required to be recorded or filed as part of the declaration or amendment were not recorded or filed simultaneously with the declaration or amendment, provided such survey or plans were filed or recorded subsequent to the recording of such declaration or amendment thereto and before the effective date of this act and were indexed in a manner which would lead to their discovery.

(d) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (c) of section 47-246 of the general statutes, title (1) to special declarant rights in a common interest community created pursuant to chapter 828 of the general statutes owned by a person or the person's successor purporting to have succeeded to special declarant rights by means of a foreclosure or deed in lieu of foreclosure prior to the effective date of this act and (2) to units created by such person or such person's successor, is validated notwithstanding the failure or inadvertence of such person to have requested the same in accordance with said subsection (c) of section 47-246.

Sec. 3. CONVEYANCES. (a) No deed, mortgage, lease, power of attorney, release, assignment or other instrument made for the purpose of conveying, leasing, mortgaging or affecting any interest in real property in this state and recorded prior to the effective date of this act in the land records of the town in which such real property is located shall be deemed invalid, because any such deed, mortgage, lease, power of attorney, release, assignment or other instrument:

(1) Was not acknowledged or was improperly acknowledged, or the person taking the acknowledgement did not have the authority to do so, or the authority of the person taking such acknowledgement was not properly stated or authenticated, or the date or place of such acknowledgment is not stated;

(2) Omits a statement of any consideration;

(3) Was attested by one witness only or by no witnesses;

(4) Omits or incorrectly states the execution date;

(5) Was not signed by the grantor but was acknowledged and delivered by the grantor;

(6) Fails to disclose the date when received for recording or when the recording fails to disclose such date;

(7) Contains a date or date of record which is earlier than the stated date of execution or acknowledgement, or both;

(8) Does not disclose that the town clerk appended his or her signature thereto, either on the deed or in the record book;

(9) Was made to any grantee not recognized by law to have the capacity to take or hold an interest in real property, such conveyances to any such grantee, and subsequent transfers of same by such grantee, being by this act confirmed as to such grantee and subsequent transferees, their heirs, successors and assigns;

(10) In the case of a conveyance or authorization of such conveyance by a committee of any society, organization or corporation or by a committee acting under the authority of any court, was signed or acknowledged by such committee as an individual or individuals;

(11) Was made to or by any alien not authorized by law to hold real estate, such conveyances to any such alien, and subsequent transfers of same by such alien, being by this act confirmed as to such alien and transferee, and their respective heirs, successors and assigns, and made effective to all intents and purposes as though the same had been made to and by a United States citizen;

(12) Was executed by an attorney-in-fact pursuant to a power of attorney, but such instrument was signed or acknowledged by the attorney-in-fact in his individual capacity;

(13) Was executed by an attorney-in-fact pursuant to a power of attorney but such instrument does not reference the power of attorney;

(14) Was executed by an attorney-in-fact pursuant to a power of attorney that was effective prior to the execution of the instrument but was not at the time of or prior to the recordation of such instrument recorded on the land records but is recorded as of the effective date of this act;

(15) In the case of a conveyance to or by a corporation:

(A) Was signed or acknowledged by only one or more officers of the corporation individually, but the corporation is designated in the instrument;

(B) Fails to disclose the official capacities of the persons executing such instrument;

(C) Was signed or acknowledged by an officer who had ceased to be such at the time of the execution or acknowledgement;

(D) Was executed or recorded when the corporation was not formed or chartered, had not yet received its corporate franchise, or its corporate existence had not begun;

(16) In the case of a conveyance by an executor, administrator, guardian, trustee or conservator or any other fiduciary:

(A) Was made by a fiduciary authorized or ordered by a court of probate to sell and convey the real estate, and the fiduciary sold and conveyed the same in accordance with such authority and received the consideration therefor, but failed to recite in such conveyance the nature and extent of the power under which he or she acted;

(B) Was made by a fiduciary who sold and conveyed the real estate under an order of the court of probate and received the consideration therefor but failed in any manner to comply with such order of such court of probate;

(C) Was made by a fiduciary who sold and conveyed the real estate by authority of an order of a probate court without having filed a bond covering the faithful administration and distribution of the avails of such sale;

(D) Was made by a fiduciary, who sold and conveyed the real estate without an order of the probate court having jurisdiction and received the consideration therefor and without having authority to make such sale, provided the same was made six years or more prior to the effective date of this act;

(E) Was made to a purchaser for value, at a time when no publication of the notice of the probate court of the hearing on the application for an order of sale was made;

(F) Was executed and delivered by one purporting to be a fiduciary but no record of whose actual appointment was contained in the probate records, provided the conveyance was given by one who did in fact act as a fiduciary and whose acts as such were approved by the probate court having jurisdiction;

(G) Was signed or acknowledged by such fiduciary individually, rather than in a fiduciary capacity;

(H) Was executed by the executor under the will or by the administrator of the estate of or by the trustee of a trust created by any deceased nonresident, in the case of a release or assignment of any mortgage, and a certificate of the appointment and qualification of such executor, administrator or trustee issued by the court having jurisdiction of the estate or trust of such deceased was not attached thereto;

(17) In the case of conveyance to or by a partnership or voluntary association:

(A) Was executed in favor of a grantee that was a voluntary association or a partnership not created under the Uniform Partnership Act or Uniform Limited Partnership Act;

(B) Was executed by less than all of the members of a voluntary association and the immediate grantor to said voluntary association but not the voluntary association itself, or by the voluntary association when execution should otherwise have been by the members thereof; or

(C) Was executed in the partnership name although title was in the individual partners;

(18) Was executed to or by a business trust or a foreign limited partnership in its own name, whether or not the business trust or foreign limited partnership had filed a copy of its declaration of trust or limited partnership agreement in the Secretary of the State's office prior to said delivery or execution;

(19) In the case of a notice of lease, because the same failed to state the term of the lease, or whether or not the lease was renewable, or to state whether or not said lease contained an option to purchase the leased premises or to extend the term of the lease, or where a copy of the lease is on file;

(20) Fails to state the town and state in which the real property described in the instrument is located;

(21) Contains more than one of the defects enumerated in this act.

(b) In the case of a real estate mortgage owned by a ward of any guardian or conservator foreclosed by such guardian or conservator in an action brought in the name of the guardian or conservator of such ward, instead of in the name of the ward, or judgment was in the name of such guardian or conservator, or a certificate of title under foreclosure was recorded in the office of the clerk of the town in which the property is located showing title to be in the name of such guardian or conservator, such judgment shall not be deemed invalid and title to such foreclosed property shall be vested in the ward.

(c) No committee deed ordered by the court in a foreclosure action, recorded prior to the effective date of this act in the land records in the town in which such real property is located, shall be deemed invalid because the approval of the judge omits or incorrectly states the date of such approval.

Sec. 4. FIDUCIARY RELATIONSHIP WITH CREDITORS. No order of limitation of time for creditors to present claims against an estate to the executor or administrator of such estate shall be deemed not to have complied with the terms of such order of the court of probate because:

(1) The executor or administrator of any estate, the settlement of which has been commenced six years or more prior to the effective date of this act, failed to give notice of the order of limitation of time for creditors to present their several claims against such estate according to the order of the court of probate issuing such order;

(2) The executor or administrator of any estate, a settlement of which has been commenced six years or more prior to the effective date of this act, failed to make a sworn return to the court of probate of the order of such court limiting the time for creditors to present any such claims against such estate.

Sec. 5. MAPS OR PLANS. No deed, mortgage, lease or other instrument recorded prior to the effective date of this act transferring any interest in a lot or lots shown on a filed map or plan of subdivision shall be deemed invalid to convey the title to the lot or lots or interest therein because:

(1) The map or plan was not sealed or certified by a surveyor or was not prepared by the owner of the land;

(2) The map or plan was not filed within the time limitations of any general or special law, ordinance or regulation;

(3) The map or plan does not have endorsed thereon the approval of the commission, body or official required by a general or special law, ordinance or regulation;

(4) The map or plan fails in any way to comply with any requirement or requirements of any special or general law, municipal ordinance or regulation.

Sec. 6. PLANNING AND ZONING. (a) No conveyance, mortgage, lease or other transfer of any interest in land comprising part of a subdivision shall be deemed invalid to convey the title to the land or interest described therein because such land comprises part of a subdivision that was not submitted for approval to the municipal planning commission or other municipal agency charged with the duty of approving subdivisions.

(b) No use or occupancy of or the presence of any building or other structure erected on a lot or lots either shown on a filed or recorded map or plan of subdivision or located in a subdivision created by the physical division of land into three or more parcels shall be deemed illegal or invalid because the lot or lots on which any such building or other structure is located is not shown on an approved plan of subdivision or because the filed or recorded map or plan of subdivision fails in any manner to comply with any requirement or requirements of any general or special law, ordinance or regulation.

(c) Any and all actions taken by any planning commission, zoning commission, planning and zoning commission, zoning board of appeals, building code board of appeals, inland-wetland agency or any other commission, board, agency or municipal official, including a legislative body, exercising the powers of any such commissions, otherwise valid except that said planning commission, zoning commission, planning and zoning commission, zoning board of appeals, building code board of appeals, inland-wetland agency or other commission, board, agency or municipal official, including a legislative body, failed to comply with the requirement or requirements of any general or special law, ordinance or regulation governing the contents, giving, mailing, publishing, filing or recording of any notice, either of the hearing or of the action taken, is validated, provided no such action shall be validated if an appeal from such action is pending in any court or the time for taking such appeal has not expired as of the effective date of this act.

(d) Nothing contained in this act shall permit or validate the use of land in violation of the planning, zoning or inland-wetland regulations of a municipality.

Sec. 7. PROBATE COURT. The following actions of any probate court are hereby validated:

(1) The actions of, or pursuant to authorization by, any probate court having, under the provisions of the general statutes, jurisdiction of the estate of any nonresident decedent, in accepting jurisdiction and ordering on record a duly authenticated and exemplified copy of the will of such decedent, with a copy of the proceedings proving and establishing the same in another state, and the appointment by such probate court of an administrator with the will annexed of such estate, after proceedings concerning the same had been commenced in another probate court, which may or may not have jurisdiction, provided the probate court in which such proceedings were first commenced shall have made a finding that it has no jurisdiction and ordered the proceedings vacated;

(2) All orders of sale of real estate by any court of probate that are otherwise valid except that such court made an alternative order of sale by either public or private sale, instead of directing the method of such sale as required under the provisions of the general statutes;

(3) All orders for the limitation of time for presenting claims against the estate of deceased persons heretofore made by any court of probate otherwise valid except that a notice to that effect was not properly given as required under the provisions of the general statutes;

(4) The sale and conveyance of any real estate, or interest therein, pursuant to any valid order issued by a probate court having jurisdiction, which sale and conveyance was valid except for the failure to consummate the same for a period of ten years or more from the date of the death of the person owning such real estate, provided any grantee of any heir or devisee of the decedent having purchased any interest of such heir or devisee shall be entitled to the share of such heir or devisee in the proceeds of such sale, and further provided if the name or address of any person entitled to any share in the proceeds of any such sale shall not be ascertainable by the probate court, such court shall appoint a trustee for the share of such person, who shall give a probate bond and shall hold such share until demanded by the person or persons entitled thereto.

Sec. 8. FINANCING STATEMENTS. No financing statement or assignment or release of a security interest filed prior to the effective date of this act with the Secretary of the State pursuant to article 9 of title 42a of the general statutes shall be deemed invalid because such financing statement, assignment or release omits or incorrectly states the execution date.

Sec. 9. APPLICABILITY. No defects, omissions or irregularities enumerated in this act shall be validated if any action, suit or proceeding has been commenced, or notice of pendency thereof has been duly recorded on or before the effective date of this act.

Sec. 10. This act shall take effect from its passage and shall apply to any defect, omission or irregularity enumerated in this act which occurred on or before January 1, 1999.

Approved June 3, 1999

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