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I bought 8 acre out of said 44. Is this release of the restrictions covenant legal or I can't divide the land less than 4 acres?

Spartanburg, SC |

The original covenant date 1977 states that:"The following restrictions and protective covenants are hereby imposed by the undersigned on that certain forty-four acres containing three tracts. These covenants are to run with the land and shall be binding on all parties and persons claiming under them until July 1, 1984. After which time said covenants shall be automatically extended for successive periods of ten years unless, by a vote of the then owners of majority of said tracts, it is agreed to change said covenants in whole or in part. "
The previous owner told me that since they own 26 acre they managed to release the convent of their 26 acre without telling other owners. This is recorded at Spartanburg County. Is this legal? The 3 neighbors don't think so as they never had a vote.

Attorney Answers 2

Posted

Avvo is not a good forum for the type of question you seek guidance for. You're going to need to have a local NC property attorney review the Deed and all its restrictons, in conjunciton with the subsequent purchases, to determine the provision applicability to you now. Sounds like lawyer mumbo-jumbo I know, but that is the best way for you to proceed.

READ THIS BEFORE CALLING OR EMAILING ME: I am licensed to practice before the state and federal courts in Virginia. We have not established an attorney-client relationship unless we have a signed representation agreement and you have paid me. I am providing educational instruction only--not legal advice. You should speak with an attorney to whom you have provided all the facts, before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. I am not obligated to answer subsequent emails or phone calls unless you have hired me. I wish you the best of luck with your situation.

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Posted

You should review this with an attorney who can verify your existing title. It sounds plausible that the previous owners could have done as they said as they owned over a majority of the acres, but was this properly recorded and executed? Also does tracks of land necessarily correlate to acres in this case, or does it relate to platted lots which could be different.

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2 comments

Asker

Posted

An attorney is looking at this at the moment but the term is a bit ambiguous. I would like to get options of other attorneys. The acres are correct and the release was recorded properly at the Spatanburg County SC. However, the covenant says "by a vote of the then owners of majority of said tracts" but the owner is saying he did not need a vote because he owned "majority of said tracts". However, neighbors argue that even though the result might be obvious the result concerns every owners hence the intended change should have been informed to all owners prior to this "one-man" vote. Also if the previous owner is correct he could have changed the restriction on all the land (not just his land) without letting other owners know. This cannot be right.

Jed R Prest

Jed R Prest

Posted

Well, "by vote" is the requirement, but its a little vague what that legally requires. This would be SC specific issue and I would be speculating. If there was a "vote", then yes the previous owner could have removed the covenants from part of all the tracts. It may seem unfair, but that's the language of the covenant. Your attorney needs to verify the requirements of the vote. If it was simply a majority of the tracts and no notice to all tract holders, then it's legal and binding. If there is any notice requirement you and the previous owner (assuming he holds the remaining 18 acres can call the vote and force the issue.). You may also be a bono fide purchaser, if you bought without knowledge of the covenants, may not be bound by them since their removal was properly recorded. Good luck.

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