Curnin granted a Deed of Trust originally to Bank of America, but now held by MTGLQ, with a property description which included the property’s lot number and the phase of the development (“STAGE I”)but without any reference to the book and page numbers where a title searcher could find the map recorded in the Brunswick County. MTGLQ brought an action to quiet title and to reform the Deed of Trust to include the full reference.
The Court of Appeals held that an action for quiet title has two essential elements:
(1) the plaintiff must own or have some interest in the property at issue; and
(2) the defendant must have a claim adverse to the plaintiff’s title or interest in the property.
Further, looking at its entirety, in order to be valid, a deed or deed of trust must contain a legal description of the land “sufficient to identify it” or refer “to something extrinsic by which the land may be identified with certainty.” Overton v. Boyce, 289 N.C. 291, 293, 221 S.E.2d 347, 349 (1976).
Here, the specific and unique lot number, together with the correct street address and tax parcel number were sufficient to describe the property. Accordingly the quiet title action was justified. The reformation action, while barred by the statute of limitations, was unnecessary as there is no time limit for seeking to quiet title.
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