Property II


There are three types of notice.

For the recording system to provide notice effectively, deeds must be recorded accurately so searchers can find them. Defects in a deed can affect its validity or its recordability.

Idem Sonans

The doctrine of idem sonans states that where a name's sound is substantially preserve, bad spelling will not invalidate its effect.

Some jurisdictions do not apply the doctrine of idem sonans and simply hold that any misspelling will invalidate inquiry notice.


Gaps in the chain of title due to inheritance or devise do not invalidate inquiry notice, even if the heirs or devisees do not record their interests.

Forgery invalidates a deed.

Invalid delivery invalidates inquiry notice, but courts generally hold that the recording of a deed creates a rebuttable presumption of valid delivery.

States are split whether a deed with defective acknowledgment provides defective notice, but some states have "curative" statutes deeming the deed valid after a certain number of years.

Chain of Title Problems
  • Wild Deed

    A wild deed is one that is not properly connected to the chain of title because a predecessor a failed to record his deed.

    Courts have uniformly ruled that a wild deed does not provide constructive notice to subsequent purchasers.

    A subsequent purchaser should ensure that the seller has properly recorded his title before purchasing and thus that he does not record a wild deed.

  • Deeds recorded too early or late
  • Multiple chains of title from a common owner

The traditional rule is that a deed provides constructive notice to subsequent purchasers even if the recorder misindexes it, but some courts have held that a misindexed deed does not.