HB 442, the private transfer fee prohibition bill, was signed into law by Governor Corbett on June 24, 2011. It is Act 8 of 2011. Its short title:
An Act amending Title 68 (Real and Personal Property) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, prohibiting private transfer fee obligations; and providing for notice and disclosure of existing private transfer fee obligations.
Conservation easement-related private transfer fees are not subject to the Act’s general prohibition on private transfer fees if the conservation easement was prepared in conformance with the Conservation and Preservation Easements Act or the Agricultural Area Security Law and the holder has been in existence for at least two years. (Anything defined as a private transfer fee by the Act is prohibited. The Act provides 10 specific exclusions from the definition of private transfer fee. Conservation easement-related fees are one of these 10 exclusions.)
A private transfer fee existing prior to today in association with a conservation easement that was NOT prepared in conformance with the Conservation and Preservation Easements Act (many easements prior to 6/22/2001) or the Agricultural Area Security Law will be presumed valid and enforceable only if it complies with various provisions of Act 8 including the filing of a notice in the public records within 6 months of today.
The Pennsylvania Land Trust Association has invested heavily in developing resources to enable land trusts to effectively use transfer fees to support easement stewardship. Ensuring that land trusts have access to this important tool was a high priority for PALTA.
Related technical resources: