Requesting a Written Acknowledgment of Compliance
I’ve been told that in order to properly retire a “title” to a manufactured or mobile home to the real property to which it is permanently attached, a three-step “retirement process” must be completed.
- File a duly executed and verified “affidavit of affixation” in the land records where the land and attached home are located.
- File a complete “application to retire,” with the Mississippi Department of Revenue through the local tax collector/assessor’s office, which includes (a) a copy of the deed evidencing ownership, (b) a certified copy of the recorded affidavit of affixation, and (c) either the certificate of title, certificate of origin, or other due proof of ownership.
- File the DOR’s written acknowledgment of compliance in the land records where the land and attached home are located.
It seems like a pretty straightforward process. However, there’s a number of questions that are often raised. Here’s one of the more recent ones:
Do I really need to record the “written acknowledgment of compliance” issued by the Mississippi Department of Revenue when I retire the title to a manufactured or mobile home?Diligent Title Agent
The answer to this question is both YES and NO.
Let’s start with the NO first.
NO. Recordation of the DOR’s written acknowledgment of compliance isn’t absolutely necessary to complete the retirement process. The retirement process is deemed completed once the DOR accepts “application to retire,” and actually notates in their system that the title has been retired. In this case, “accept” doesn’t refer to them physically accepting the paper application to retire. It means, they’ve received the application to retire and they have reviewed and confirmed that it satisfies the statute and their requirements and accepts it for the purpose of actually retiring title.
YES. While recordation of the DOR’s written acknowledgment of compliance isn’t necessary to complete the retirement process, it is necessary in order to satisfy the “underwriting requirements” associated with issuing an ALTA 7 series endorsement for most underwriters.
First, there is no way for the title agent nor title insurer to confirm that the “retirement process” has in fact been completed, without the DOR’s written acknowledgment of compliance. In order to obtain written confirmation (where none has been recorded), the title agent, title insurer, or other party wanting confirmation must submit a public records request, along with a check for $8.00 to obtain a copy of the written acknowledgment of compliance.
Second, when the process was being discussed by the stakeholders when the law was being written, utility companies indicated that they would require a copy of the written acknowledgment of compliance before they would turn on utilities to a newly installed home.
Finally, filing the written acknowledgment of compliance in the land records where the land and attached home are located clearly indicates to the person examining title after you, that the process has been completed and absent the recordation of an affidavit of severance or destruction, title to the manufactured or mobile home as been permanently retired to the subject real property.
Please make sure that you fill in your firm’s contact information in the section of the application titled “Party Requesting Written Acknowledgment of Surrender.” This will ensure that you receive a copy of the DOR’s written acknowledgment of compliance once they have completed the retirement process on their books. Once you receive the acknowledgment, you should attach a cover sheet and then record the written acknowledgment of compliance in the subject property’s chain of title in the land records.