CHAPTER 706
CONVEYANCES OF REAL PROPERTY; RECORDING; TITLES
706.001   Scope and construction.
706.01   Definitions.
706.02   Formal requisites.
706.03   Agents, officers and guardians.
706.04   Equitable relief.
706.05   Formal requisites for record.
706.055   Conveyances of mineral rights.
706.057   Lapse and reversion of interests in minerals.
706.06   Authentication.
706.07   Uniform law on notarial acts.
706.08   Nonrecording, effect.
706.085   Correction instruments.
706.09   Notice of conveyance from the record.
706.095   Interspousal remedies.
706.10   Forms, construction.
706.105   Applicability of general transfers at death provisions.
706.11   Priority of certain mortgages, trust funds.
706.12   Uniform vendor and purchaser risk act.
706.13   Slander of title.
706.14   Transitional and curative provisions.
706.15   Liens against public officials or employees.
706.20   Disclosure duty; immunity for providing notice about the sex offender registry.
706.25   Uniform real property electronic recording act.
706.001 706.001 Scope and construction.
706.001(1) (1) Subject to the exclusions in sub. (2), this chapter shall govern every transaction by which any interest in land is created, aliened, mortgaged, assigned or may be otherwise affected in law or in equity.
706.001(2) (2) Excluded from the operation of this chapter are transactions which an interest in land is affected:
706.001(2)(a) (a) By act or operation of law; or
706.001(2)(b) (b) By will; or
706.001(2)(bm) (bm) By nonprobate transfer on death under s. 705.15; or
706.001(2)(c) (c) By lease for a term limited to one year or less; or by contract or option to lease for such period which postpones the commencement of the agreed lease to a time not later than 60 days after the date of the contract or option; or by assignment, modification or termination of lease when, at the time such assignment, modification or termination is made, the unexpired term is limited to one year or less, and remains so limited under the lease as modified; except that instruments relating to such excluded transactions, if in recordable form, shall be entitled to record.
706.001(3) (3) This chapter shall be liberally construed, in cases of conflict or ambiguity, so as to effectuate the intentions of parties who have acted in good faith.
706.001 History History: 1999 a. 85 ss. 135, 138; 2005 a. 206.
706.001 Annotation The doctrine of part performance is not an "operation of law" under sub. (2) (a) that excludes the application of ch. 706 to a transaction. Wyss v. Albee, 183 Wis. 2d 245, 515 N.W.2d 517 (Ct. App. 1994).
706.001 Annotation Transactions in which an interest in land is affected by act or operation of law are excluded from operation of this chapter under sub. (2). Dow Family, LLC v. PHH Mortgage Corporation, 2014 WI 56, ___ Wis. 2d ___, 848 N.W.2d 728, 13-0221.
706.01 706.01 Definitions. In this chapter:
706.01(4) (4) "Conveyance" means a written instrument, evidencing a transaction governed by this chapter, that satisfies the requirements of s. 706.02, subject to s. 706.25.
706.01(5) (5) "Conveyance of mineral interests" means any transaction under s. 706.001 (1) entered into for the purpose of determining the presence, location, quality or quantity of metalliferous minerals or for the purpose of mining, developing or extracting metalliferous minerals, or both. Any transaction under s. 706.001 (1) entered into by a mining company is rebuttably presumed to be a conveyance of mineral interests.
706.01(6) (6) "Grantor" means the person from whom an interest in lands passes by conveyance, including, without limitation, lessors, vendors, mortgagors, optionors, releasors, assignors and trust settlors of interest in lands, and "grantee" means the person to whom the interest in land passes. Whenever consistent with the context, reference to the interest of a party includes the interest of the party's heirs, successors, personal representatives and assigns.
706.01(7) (7) "Homestead", as used in this chapter, means the dwelling, and so much of the land surrounding it as is reasonably necessary for use of the dwelling as a home, but not less than one-fourth acre, if available, and not exceeding 40 acres.
706.01(7m) (7m) "Interest in minerals" means any fee simple interest in minerals beneath the surface of land that is:
706.01(7m)(a) (a) Separate from the fee simple interest in the surface of the land; and
706.01(7m)(b) (b) Created by an instrument transferring, granting, assigning or reserving the minerals.
706.01(7r) (7r) "Legal description" means a description of a specific parcel of real estate that is described in one of the following ways, whichever is appropriate:
706.01(7r)(a) (a) By one of the ways under s. 66.0217 (1) (c).
706.01(7r)(b) (b) By condominium name, unit number, and appurtenance number in a platted condominium development.
706.01(8) (8) "Metalliferous minerals" means naturally occurring minerals containing metal.
706.01(8m) (8m) "Mineral" means a naturally occurring substance recognized by standard authorities as mineral, whether metalliferous or nonmetalliferous.
706.01(9) (9) "Mining company" means any person or agent of a person who has a prospecting permit under s. 293.45 or a mining permit under s. 293.49 or 295.58.
706.01(10) (10) "Signed" includes any handwritten signature or symbol on a conveyance intended by the person affixing or adopting the signature or symbol to constitute an execution of the conveyance.
706.01 Annotation A necessary implication under sub. (3) is one that is so clear as to be express; it is a required implication. The words "heirs and assigns," or any similar language, are unnecessary under sub. (3) to indicate a transferable interest. As a matter of law, "Grantee" has the exact same meaning as "Grantee and his heirs and assigns" unless another meaning is expressly stated or implied. Therefore, "heirs and assigns" need not be construed as having any legal effect and the use of the term in a grant of water flowage rights and not in a grant of sand removal rights in the same deed did not create a necessary implication that the sand rights were non-transferable. Borek Cranberry Marsh v. Jackson County, 2010 WI 95, 328 Wis. 2d 613, 785 N.W.2d 615, 08-1144.
706.02 706.02 Formal requisites.
706.02(1)(1) Transactions under s. 706.001 (1) shall not be valid unless evidenced by a conveyance that satisfies all of the following:
706.02(1)(a) (a) Identifies the parties; and
706.02(1)(b) (b) Identifies the land; and
706.02(1)(c) (c) Identifies the interest conveyed, and any material term, condition, reservation, exception or contingency upon which the interest is to arise, continue or be extinguished, limited or encumbered; and
706.02(1)(d) (d) Is signed by or on behalf of each of the grantors; and
706.02(1)(e) (e) Is signed by or on behalf of all parties, if a lease or contract to convey; and
706.02(1)(f) (f) Is signed, or joined in by separate conveyance, by or on behalf of each spouse, if the conveyance alienates any interest of a married person in a homestead under s. 706.01 (7) except conveyances between spouses, but on a purchase money mortgage pledging that property as security only the purchaser need sign the mortgage; and
706.02(1)(g) (g) Is delivered. Except under s. 706.09, a conveyance delivered upon a parol limitation or condition shall be subject thereto only if the issue arises in an action or proceeding commenced within 5 years following the date of such conditional delivery; however, when death or survival of a grantor is made such a limiting or conditioning circumstance, the conveyance shall be subject thereto only if the issue arises in an action or proceeding commenced within such 5-year period and commenced prior to such death.
706.02(2) (2) A conveyance may satisfy any of the foregoing requirements of this section:
706.02(2)(a) (a) By specific reference, in a writing signed as required, to extrinsic writings in existence when the conveyance is executed; or
706.02(2)(b) (b) By physical annexation of several writings to one another, with the mutual consent of the parties; or
706.02(2)(c) (c) By several writings which show expressly on their faces that they refer to the same transaction, and which the parties have mutually acknowledged by conduct or agreement as evidences of the transaction.
706.02 History History: 1971 c. 211 s. 126; 1977 c. 177; 1999 a. 85.
706.02 Annotation There can be no waiver of the necessity of a spouse's joining in a deed of a homestead and no finding of agency will sustain the deed. Wangen v. Leum, 46 Wis. 2d 60, 174 N.W.2d 266 (1970).
706.02 Annotation In pleading a contract that is subject to the statute of frauds, it is not necessary to allege facts to establish that the contract complies with the statute or is within its exceptions. Ritterbusch v. Ritterbusch, 50 Wis. 2d 633, 184 N.W.2d 865 (1971).
706.02 Annotation An option to purchase land must be in writing and cannot be modified orally, but a seller may orally agree to accept payment in full rather than in installments. Kubnick v. Bohne, 56 Wis. 2d 527, 202 N.W.2d 400 (1972).
706.02 Annotation The test of undue influence to set aside a will is also applicable in order to void an inter vivos transfer due to undue influence. Ward v. Ward, 62 Wis. 2d 543, 215 N.W.2d 3 (1976).
706.02 Annotation Standing alone, an added provision in a 30-day option agreement to purchase real estate did not comply with the statute of frauds. Edlebeck v. Barnes, 63 Wis. 2d 240, 216 N.W.2d 551 (1974).
706.02 Annotation An oral contract for the conveyance of an interest in land is void unless there is a memorandum that conforms to the statute of frauds. Trimble v. Wis. Builders, Inc. 72 Wis. 2d 435, 241 N.W.2d 409 (1976).
706.02 Annotation When a contract for the sale of land with an indefinite description is taken out of the statute of frauds by part performance, extrinsic evidence admissible but for the statute of frauds may be introduced to provide the description. Clay v. Bradley, 74 Wis. 2d 153, 246 N.W.2d 142 (1976).
706.02 Annotation The question under sub. (1) (b) of whether property boundaries are identified to a reasonable certainty is for the jury to determine with the aid of all competent extrinsic evidence. Zapuchlak v. Hucal, 82 Wis. 2d 184, 262 N.W.2d 514 (1978).
706.02 Annotation The homestead defense under sub. (1) (f) is not defeated by s. 706.04, but a tort claim may exist against a signing spouse who misrepresents the non-signing spouse's acquiescence. Glinski v. Sheldon, 88 Wis. 2d 509, 276 N.W.2d 815 (1979).
706.02 Annotation The defense of the statute of frauds is waived if not raised in the trial court. Hine v. Vilter, 88 Wis. 2d 645, 277 N.W.2d 772 (1979).
706.02 Annotation A mortgage fraudulently executed by the use of a forged signature of one grantor was wholly void. State Bank of Drummond v. Christophersen, 93 Wis. 2d 148, 286 N.W.2d 547 (1980).
706.02 Annotation When a contract for the sale of land and personalty is not divisible, the contract is entirely void if this section is not satisfied. Spensley Feed v. Livingston Feed, 128 Wis. 2d 279, 381 N.W.2d 601 (Ct. App. 1985).
706.02 Annotation The homestead signature requirement of sub. (1) (f) must be waived affirmatively by actual signing of the mortgage. A failure to plead the statute of frauds as an affirmative defense did not constitute a waiver. Weber v. Weber, 176 Wis. 2d 1085, 501 N.W.2d 413 (1993).
706.02 Annotation A quitclaim deed of a married couple's homestead from one spouse to the other is not valid to alienate the grantor's interest in the property in any way that would eliminate either spouse's contractual obligations under a mortgage containing a valid dragnet clause. Schmidt v. Waukesha State Bank, 204 Wis. 2d 426, 555 N.W.2d 655 (Ct. App. 1996), 95-1850.
706.02 Annotation An in-court oral stipulation could create a mortgage interest in property, but a homestead conveyance must bear the conveyor's signatures. Because the stipulation lacked signatures, it was not a mortgage that could defeat the homestead exemption under s. 815.20. Equitable Bank, S.S.B. v. Chabron, 2000 WI App 210, 238 Wis. 2d 708, 618 N.W.2d 262, 99-2639.
706.02 Annotation If the language within the four corners of a deed is unambiguous, the court need look no further for the parties' intent. Eckendorf v. Austin, 2000 WI App 219, 239 Wis. 2d 69, 619 N.W.2d 129, 00-0713.
706.02 Annotation Spouses may affirmatively waive the homestead protection in sub. (1) (f) in a premarital agreement. Jones v. Estate of Jones, 2002 WI 61, 253 Wis. 2d 158, 646 N.W.2d 280, 01-1025.
706.02 Annotation A conveyance that "identifies the land" as required by sub. (1) means the conveyance must identify the property with "reasonable certainty." "Reasonable certainty" means that by the aid of the facts and circumstances surrounding the parties at the time the court can with reasonable certainty determine the land which is to be conveyed. It does not, however, necessarily require a legal description. Anderson v. Quinn, 2007 WI App 260, 306 Wis. 2d 686, 743 N.W.2d 492, 06-2462.
706.02 Annotation Parol evidence in the context of the statute of frauds does not operate to supply fatal omissions of a writing but rather to render the writing intelligible. A clear distinction must be drawn between the proper admission of extrinsic evidence for the purpose of applying the description to identified property versus the improper supplying of a description or adding to a description that on its face is insufficient. As the description "remaining acreage" was, on its face, insufficient to identify the specific property, parol evidence would not be admissible under the statute of frauds. 303, LLC v. Born, 2012 WI App 115, 344 Wis. 2d 364, 823 N.W.2d 269, 11-2368.
706.02 Annotation The mortgage in this case was equitably assigned to the holder of the original note by operation of law upon transfer of the note. Therefore, equitable assignment of the mortgage was not barred by the statute of frauds under this section. Dow Family, LLC v. PHH Mortgage Corporation, 2014 WI 56, ___ Wis. 2d ___, 848 N.W.2d 728, 13-0221.
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2013-14 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2015 Wis. Act 20 and all Supreme Court Orders entered before May 22, 2015. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after May 22, 2015 are designated by NOTES. (Published 5-22-15)