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Deed Glossary

Arkansas requires a deed to be ‘acknowledged’ (notarized) in order to be recorded in the county circuit clerk’s office. An acknowledgment is a formal declaration before authorized official, by person(s) who executed instrument, that it is his free act and deed. The ‘official’ is usually a notary who requires verification of identification from the persons signing before him.

Administrator (-trix)
A person appointed by the court to administer (i.e. manage or take charge of) the assets and liabilities of a decedent (the deceased).

An incidental right (as of a right-of-way) attached to a principal property right and passing in possession with it.

Caveat clause
Literally translated Caveat means “let him beware”. As this applies to instruments transferring property, you will often see a ‘caveat clause’ stating the preparer of the document did not perform certain activities that would normally be associated with the preparation of such a document. An example would be “the title was not checked or verified by the preparer (of this document). The information was furnished by realtor (or seller, etc)” Many attorney offices are now also adding the initials or name of the person who ‘keyboarded’ the document. NO ONE OTHER THAN AN LICENSED ARKANSAS ATTORNEY OR THE GRANTOR CAN PREPARE A DEED UNDER ARKANSAS LAW.

Consideration Clause
Consideration is the cause, motive, price, or impelling influence which induces a contracting party to enter into a contract or deed and is required by law. Consideration does not have to be money but must be ‘valid and lawful’ – it can be ‘love and affection’, a trade of property, or money. Arkansas is not a full disclosure state – the actual amount of consideration does NOT have to be stated in a deed, and, in fact, can even be inflated if the parties choose to do this.

Having, consisting of, or relating to physical material body (a person or persons)

Curtesy interest
The estate to which by common law a man is entitled, on the death of his wife, in the lands or tenements of which she was seised in possession in fee-sumple or in tail during her coverture, provided they have had lawful issue born alive which might have been capable of inheriting the estate. It is a freehold estate for the term of his natural life. In some jurisdictions, there is no requirement that issue be born of the union. This estate has gradually lost much of its former value and now in some jurisdictions it attaches only to the real estate which the wife owns at death, rather than to the real estate owned by the wife during the marriage. Most states have altered or abolished this.

Curtilage (regarding application of homestead credit)
A word derived from the Latin cohors (a place enclosed around a yard) and the old French Cortilliage or courtillage which today has been corrupted into court-yard. Originally, it referred to the land and outbuildings immediately adjacent to a castle that were in turn surrounded by a high stone wall; today, its meaning has been extended to include any land or building immediately adjacent to a dwelling, and usually enclosed some way by a fence or shrubs.

Dower Interest
A species of life-estate which a woman is, by law, entitled to claim on the death of her husband, in the lands and tenements of which he was seised in fee during the marriage, and which her issue, if any, might by possibility have inherited. Originally this interest was for 1/3 of the value of the property. Dower has been abolished in the majority of states and materially altered in most others.

Election – Law of Wills
An ‘election under the will’ means that a legatee or devisee under a will is put to the choice of accepting the beneficial interest offered by the donor in lieu of some estate which he is entitled to, but which is taken from him by the terms of the will.

To intrude unlawfully upon the lands - property of another. (for example, a storage building constructed by owner ‘A’ that is partially situated on neighbor B’s land.)

A claim, lien, charge, or liability attached to and binding real property such as a mortgage, judgment lien, mechanics’ lien, lease, security interest; easement or right of way, accrued and unpaid taxes.

(with regard to deeds) The degree, quantity, nature, and extent of interest which a person has in real and personal property.

Execution of Instrument
Completion of instrument, including signing and delivery. (instruments of conveyance of real estate must be signed by the grantor(s), unconditional delivery given by grantor, and acceptance by grantee. If a person executes a deed to grant, bargain, and sell a specific legal description of property to (for example) the City of Little Rock, but the city refuses to ‘accept delivery’ of the instrument, the instrument has no validity in law.

Executor (-trix)
A person appointed by a testator to carry out the directions and requests in his will, and to dispose of the property according to his testamentary provisions after his decease. (‘Personal Representative’ includes ‘executor’. This assignment can be limited by specific terms in the will.

A person having duties involving good faith, trust, special confidence, and candor towards another. A fiduciary includes such relationships as executor, administrator, trustee, and guardian.

General Warranty
The name of a covenant of warranty inserted in deeds, by which the grantor binds himself, his heirs, etc. to “warrant and forever defend” to the grantee, his heirs, etc. the title thereby conveyed, against the lawful claims of all persons whatsoever.

General Warranty Deed
A deed carrying a covenant of warranty by which the grantor binds himself, his heirs, etc. to “warrant and forever defend” to the grantee, his heirs, etc. the title thereby conveyed, against the lawful claims of all persons whatsoever.

One to whom a grant is made. (Think of this as the ‘buyer’ with regard to deeds)

Granting Clause
A conveyance: i.e. transfer of property real or personal by deed or writing. That portion of a deed or instrument of conveyance which contains the words of transfer of a present interest. A grant passes some estate or interest, corporeal or incorporal interest such as a reversion. For example, the clause in an oil and gas lease that spells out what rights are given by the lessor to the lessee. Typically, an oil and gas lease granting clause will specify kinds of uses permitted and substances covered by the least.

The person by whom a grant is made. A transferor of property. The creator of a trust is usually designated as the grantor of the trust. (Also see Settlor). (Think of this as the ‘seller’ with regard to deeds)

A person lawfully invested (by will or court proceeding) with the power and charged with the duty, of taking care of the person and managing the property and rights of another person, who, for defect of age, understanding, or self-control, is considered incapable of administering his own affairs.

Habendum Clause
Portion of deed beginning with the words “To have and to hold”. The clause usually following the granting part of the premises of a deed, which defines the extend of the ownership in the thing granted to be held and emjoyed by the grantee. The purpose of the ‘habendum’ is properly to determine what estate or interest is granted by the deed, though may be performed by the premises, in which case the habendum may lessen, enlarge, explain, or qualify, but not totally contraduct or be repugnant to, estate granted in the premises. Heir
One who inherits property.

Not consisting of physical material body (a corporation, partnership, etc)

Legal Description
A description of real property by government survey (NE NW for example), metes and bounds (beginning at the Northeast Corner of the SW SW of 23-10-10, thence South 23 degrees 30 minutes 20 seconds East 567 feet, thence North 40 degrees 10 minutes 00 seconds West…. For example), or lot numbers of a recorded plat that includes a description of any portion thereof subject to an easement or reservation (said recorded plat must show the unmistakable exact location of each lot usually by metes and bounds). The legal description must be complete enough that a particular parcel of land can be located and identified ‘exactly’. It should be noted the 911 address is NOT sufficient to qualify as a legal description, but may be included for information purposes.

• As it relates to conveyances That part of a deed or conveyance that precedes the habendum, in which are set forth the names of the parties with their titles and additions, and in which are recited such deeds, agreements, or matters of fact as are necessary to explain the reasons upon which the present transaction is founded; and it is here, also, the consideration on which it is made is set down and the certainty of the thing granted.
• As it relates to estates and property Land with its appurtenances and structures thereon
Quit Claim Deed
Deed of conveyance operating by way of ‘release’; that is, intended to pass any title, interest, or claim which the grantor ‘may’ have in the premises, but not professing that such title exists or is valid, nor containing any warranty or covenants for title.

The grantor or donor in a deed of settlement. Also, one who creates a trust.

Special Warranty
Where the warranty is only against the claims of persons claiming “by, through, or under” the grantor or his heirs is called a “special warranty”.

Special Warranty Deed
A deed in which the grantor only covenants to warrant and defend the title against claims and demands of the grantor and all persons claiming by, through and under (only) him.

Warranty Clause (Warranty of Title)
An implied promise exists that the seller owns the item offered for sale. The title conveyed shall be good, and its transfer rightful; and the goods shall be delivered free from any security interest or other lien or encumbrance of which the buyer at the time of contracting has no knowledge. A warranty should be excluded or modified only by specified language or by circumstances which give the buyer reason to know that the person selling does not claim title in himself or that he is purporting to sell only such right or title as he or a third person may have.

Warranty Deed
Same as ‘General warranty deed’

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deed_glossary.txt · Last modified: 2017/04/21 13:58 (external edit)