Bulletin: NJ2020005

Date:
June 23, 2020
To:
All New Jersey Issuing Offices
RE:
UNDERWRITING - Water and Sewer Utility Payments/Liens

Dear Associates:

Please be advised that on June 22, 2020, the State of New Jersey has enacted the following bill, P.L. 2020 c. 39, which permits local units and authorities to waive interest and lien enforcement for certain delinquent water and sewer utility payments during the public health emergency. This bill shall take effect immediately and shall apply retroactively as of March 9, 2020.

The bill states that for the duration of the public health emergency, state of emergency, or both and for a period up to 90 days after the public health emergency, state of emergency, or both, are no longer in effect, the municipality or sewerage authority may, in its discretion, engage in any combination of the following: (1) not charge interest on the delinquent payment; (2) not place a lien on such parcel of real property for the unpaid balance for any service charge and all interest accruing thereon; or (3) not discontinue service of any property for the failure to pay any amount owing. A municipality or sewerage authority shall exercise the discretionary authority it is provided consistently to all properties, or to all properties of the same use type or other appropriate category.

Therefore, as long as this bill remains in effect, please confirm with the municipality or local sewerage authority that delinquent payments for water and sewer charges will not result in liens against the real property or if these charges have been waived by the local authority entirely. If the local authority has waived any delinquent payments or liens, you must receive written confirmation from the local authority confirming this information prior to closing. If you have any questions relating to this or other bulletins, please contact a Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter.

 If you have any questions relating to this or other bulletins, please contact a Stewart Title Guaranty Company underwriter.

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THIS BULLETIN IS FURNISHED TO INFORM YOU OF CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS. AS A REMINDER, YOU ARE CHARGED WITH KNOWLEDGE OF THE CONTENT ON VIRTUAL UNDERWRITER  AS IT EXISTS FROM TIME TO TIME AS IT APPLIES TO YOU, AS WELL AS ANY OTHER INSTRUCTIONS. OUR UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS DO NOT AUTHORIZE OUR ISSUING AGENTS TO ENGAGE IN SETTLEMENTS OR CLOSINGS ON BEHALF OF STEWART TITLE GUARANTY COMPANY. THIS BULLETIN IS NOT INTENDED TO DIRECT YOUR ESCROW OR SETTLEMENT PRACTICES OR TO CHANGE PROVISIONS OF APPLICABLE UNDERWRITING AGREEMENTS. CONFIDENTIAL, PROPRIETARY, OR NONPUBLIC PERSONAL INFORMATION SHOULD NEVER BE SHARED OR DISSEMINATED EXCEPT AS ALLOWED BY LAW. IF APPLICABLE STATE LAW OR REGULATION IMPOSES ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS, YOU SHOULD CONTINUE TO COMPLY WITH THOSE REQUIREMENTS.

References

Bulletins Replaced:
None
Related Bulletins:
None
Underwriting Manual:
None
Exceptions Manual:
None
Forms:
None