710.01   Aliens may acquire lands.
710.02   Limitation on nonresident aliens and corporations.
710.03   Provision not retroactive.
710.05   Adverse claim to account.
710.07   Conveyances by life tenant.
710.09   Navigable stream does not divide parcel.
710.10   Removal of possessor of property.
710.11   Transfer of land where dam exists.
710.12   Disclosure regarding managed forest land.
710.13   Disclosures regarding real property wholesalers.
710.15   Manufactured and mobile home community regulations.
710.17   Right to display the flag of the United States.
710.18   Homeowners' associations; regulation.
710.20   Maintenance and repair of private roads.
710.25   Discriminatory restrictions prohibited.
710.01 710.01 Aliens may acquire lands. Subject to the limitations of s. 710.02 an alien may acquire and hold lands or any right thereto or interest therein by purchase, devise or descent, and the alien may convey, mortgage and devise the same; and if the alien shall die intestate the same shall descend to the alien's heirs; and in all cases such lands shall be held, conveyed, mortgaged or devised or shall descend in like manner and with like effect as if such alien were a native citizen of the state or of the United States.
710.01 History History: 1993 a. 486.
710.02 710.02 Limitation on nonresident aliens and corporations.
710.02(1)(1)Limitation. The following persons may not acquire, own or hold any interest, directly or indirectly, except an interest used to secure repayment of a debt incurred in good faith, in more than 640 acres of land in this state:
710.02(1)(a) (a) Aliens not residents of a state of the United States.
710.02(1)(b) (b) Corporations not created under the laws of the United States or a state of the United States.
710.02(1)(c)1.1. Corporations, limited liability companies, partnerships or associations having more than 20 percent of their stock, securities or other indicia of ownership held or owned by persons under par. (a) or (b).
710.02(1)(c)2. 2. Trusts having more than 20 percent of the value of their assets held for the benefit of persons under par. (a) or (b).
710.02(2) (2) Exceptions. Except as provided in sub. (3), sub. (1) does not apply to:
710.02(2)(a) (a) Subject to sub. (5), any person acquiring an interest in land by devise, inheritance or in the good faith collection of debts by due process of law.
710.02(2)(b) (b) Citizens, foreign governments or subjects of a foreign government whose rights to hold larger quantities of land are secured by treaty.
710.02(2)(c) (c) Railroad or pipeline corporations.
710.02(2)(d) (d) An exploration mining lease as defined in s. 107.001 (1) and land used for mining and associated activities under chs. 293 and 295.
710.02(2)(e) (e) Manufacturing activities specified under division D of the standard industrial classification manual published by the U.S. printing office, 1972 and later editions.
710.02(2)(f) (f) Mercantile activities specified under divisions C, E, F, G, H and I of the standard industrial classification manual published by the U.S. printing office, 1972 and later editions.
710.02(2)(g) (g) Leases for exploration or production of oil, gas, coal, shale and related hydrocarbons, including by-products of the production, and land used in connection with the exploration or production.
710.02(3) (3) Use of land restricted. Land in excess of 640 acres, acquired by a person listed under sub. (1) other than a person listed under sub. (2) (a), (b) or (c) for an activity listed under sub. (2) (d), (e), (f) or (g), may not be used directly or indirectly by that person for any activity not under sub. (2) (d), (e), (f) or (g). Pending the conversion and development of the land for a purpose permitted under sub. (2) (d), (e), (f) or (g), it may be used for agriculture or forestry purposes under a lease to a person not subject to sub. (1). Products of the land may be sold by the lessee to the owner of the land.
710.02(4) (4) Reporting requirements.
710.02(4)(a)(a) Any person filing a report required under 7 USC 3501 to 3508 shall file with the secretary of agriculture, trade and consumer protection a duplicate original of the report, together with both of the following:
710.02(4)(a)1. 1. The tax parcel number or full legal description of the lands acquired, owned or held.
710.02(4)(a)2. 2. If the interest in land is acquired, owned or held under an exception set forth in sub. (2), a statement which sets forth the specific exception and, if under sub. (2) (d), (e), (f) or (g), the timetable and plan for conversion and development to a purpose permitted under sub. (2) (d), (e), (f) or (g).
710.02(4)(b) (b) The secretary shall annually submit to the chief clerk of each house of the legislature, for distribution to the appropriate standing committees under s. 13.172 (3), a report summarizing information received under par. (a).
710.02(5) (5) Divestiture.
710.02(5)(a)(a) Interests exceeding 640 acres acquired by persons under sub. (1) shall be divested at the discretion of the holder to comply with sub. (1) within 4 years after:
710.02(5)(a)1. 1. Acquiring the interest, if the interest is described under sub. (2) (a) and the person is subject to sub. (1) (a) or (b).
710.02(5)(a)2. 2. Acquiring the interest or becoming subject to sub. (1) (c), whichever is later, if the person is subject to sub. (1) (c).
710.02(5)(b) (b) Land subject to divestiture under par. (a) may not be managed to cause undue levels of soil erosion or to injure the long-range productivity of the land. The attorney general may bring an action to enjoin these practices on the land.
710.02(6) (6) Forfeitures. Interests in lands in excess of 640 acres acquired or held in violation of this section are forfeited to the state. The holder of the interest shall determine which lands are to be forfeited to comply with sub. (1).
710.02(7) (7) Penalty for failure to report. Any person violating sub. (4) (a) shall forfeit not less than $500 nor more than $5,000.
710.02(8) (8) Enforcement. The attorney general shall enforce this section.
710.02(9) (9) Applicability. This section applies to interests in land acquired after July 1, 1982. No interest acquired before July 1, 1982, is subject to divestiture or forfeiture under this section.
710.02 Note NOTE: 1983 Wis. Act 335, which repealed and recreated this section, contains a “legislative declaration" of intent in section 1.
710.02 Annotation The rationale of former s. 710.02, 1973 stats., which limited nonresident alien ownership of land, was premised upon potential detriment to the welfare of the community and was not so arbitrary as to deny equal protection. Lehndorff Geneva, Inc. v. Warren, 74 Wis. 2d 369, 246 N.W.2d 815 (1976).
710.02 Annotation Sub. (1) is generally inapplicable to General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) members, their services, or their service suppliers to the extent they seek to acquire, own, or hold land for enumerated service-related uses enumerated in the U.S. Schedule for the agreement. To the extent they seek to enforce their rights under the GATS, GATS members and their service suppliers, including citizens of and corporations organized under GATS members, are covered by the treaty exception in sub. (2) (b) that exempts “citizens, foreign governments or subjects of a foreign government" from the acreage limitation. OAG 11-14
710.03 710.03 Provision not retroactive. The title to any lands conveyed before May 3, 1887, or any lands which nonresident aliens may hold under s. 710.02 conveyed since that date, shall not be questioned nor in any manner affected by reason of the alienage of any person from or through whom such title may have been derived.
710.05 710.05 Adverse claim to account.
710.05(1)(1)In this section:
710.05(1)(a) (a) “Account" means credit of a depositor with a financial institution, and includes a demand deposit or savings account, certificate of deposit, share account, time deposit, open account and other similar arrangements.
710.05(1)(b) (b) “Depositor" means a person who, by agreement with a financial institution or by written power of attorney, has the right to issue orders or instructions concerning an account.
710.05(1)(c) (c) “Financial institution" means a state or national bank, trust company, savings bank, building and loan association, savings and loan association or credit union doing business in this state.
710.05(2) (2)Except as provided in ch. 112 or subch. I of ch. 705, notice to a financial institution of a claim to all or part of an account by any person other than a depositor of the account or the financial institution has no effect upon the rights and duties of the depositor or financial institution with respect to the account, and notwithstanding such notice or claim the financial institution may honor the orders and instructions of its depositor regarding the account without liability to the claimant until otherwise ordered by a court or administrative agency of appropriate jurisdiction.
710.05 History History: 1977 c. 430; 1989 a. 331.
710.07 710.07 Conveyances by life tenant. A conveyance made by a tenant for life or years purporting to grant a greater estate than the tenant possessed or could lawfully convey shall not work a forfeiture of the tenant's estate, but shall pass to the grantee all the estate which such tenant could lawfully convey.
710.07 History History: 1993 a. 486.
710.09 710.09 Navigable stream does not divide parcel. Unless otherwise provided by local ordinance, a navigable stream running through a parcel of land does not, in and of itself, divide the parcel into 2 parcels if the parcel, on both sides of the stream, is owned by the same owner.
710.09 History History: 2013 a. 358.
710.10 710.10 Removal of possessor of property. In the following cases any person who holds possession of property, or the representatives or assigns of such person may be removed under ch. 799 or 843.
710.10(1) (1)A person holding in violation of s. 704.17 (4), or of s. 704.19 (8).
710.10(2) (2)A tenant at sufferance holding without permission.
710.10(3) (3)A possessor of property which has been sold upon foreclosure of a mortgage if the possessor's rights were extinguished by the foreclosure.
710.10(4) (4)A person who occupies or holds property under an agreement with the owner to occupy and cultivate it upon shares and the time fixed in the agreement for such occupancy has expired.
710.10 History History: 1971 c. 211; 1975 c. 198; 1979 c. 32 s. 92 (16); 1993 a. 486.
710.11 710.11 Transfer of land where dam exists. A person may not accept the transfer of the ownership of a specific piece of land on which a dam is physically located unless the person complies with s. 31.14 (4).
710.11 History History: 1981 c. 246.
710.11 AnnotationThis section does not apply to cranberry dams. Tenpas v. DNR, 148 Wis. 2d 579, 436 N.W.2d 297 (1989).
710.12 710.12 Disclosure regarding managed forest land. If real property, or any portion of the real property, that is being sold will, after the sale, continue to be subject to an order designating it as managed forest land under subch. VI of ch. 77, the owner of the property shall, no later than 10 days after the acceptance by the owner of the contract of sale or of the option contract, provide a written disclosure to the prospective buyer that the real property will continue to be subject to the order after the property is transferred. The disclosure shall explain that terms of orders designating managed forest land are for 25 or 50 years. The disclosure shall state that the division of forestry in the department of natural resources monitors management plan compliance under the managed forest land program, and shall provide information as to how to contact the division of forestry. The disclosure shall contain the following statement: “Changes you make to property that is subject to an order designating it as managed forest land, or to its use, may jeopardize your benefits under the program or may cause the property to be withdrawn from the program and may result in the assessment of penalties."
710.12 History History: 2009 a. 365.
710.13 710.13 Disclosures regarding real property wholesalers.
710.13(1)(a)(a) “Purchase agreement” means a contract for the sale, exchange, option, rental, or purchase of residential real property.
2021-22 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2023 Wis. Act 210 and through all Supreme Court and Controlled Substances Board Orders filed before and in effect on May 17, 2024. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after May 17, 2024, are designated by NOTES. (Published 5-17-24)