This section is from the book "The Law Of Real Property and Other Interests In Land", by Herbert Thorn Dike Tiffany. Also available from Amazon: A Treatise on the Modern Law of Real Property and Other Interests in Land .
983; Mcbee v. O'connell, 19 N. M. 565, 145 Pac. 123; Edwards v. Thompson, 71 N. C. 177; Randall v. Lingewall, 43 Ore. 383, 73 Pac. 1; Hood v. Fahnestock, 1 Pa. 470; Hottenstein v. Lerch, 104 Pa. 454; Glendenning v. Bell, 70 Tex. 632, 8 S. W. 324.
12. Barnhart v. Greenshields, 9 Moore, P. C. C. 34; Hunt v. Luck (1902), 1 Ch. 428; Flagg v. Mann, Fed. Cas. No. 4,847, 2 Sumn. 486; Beattie v. Beattie, 21 Mo. 313, 64 Am. Dec. 234. For a criticism of the English view, see editorial note 12 Columbia Law Rev. 549.
Whether, adopting the ordinary American rule, the purchaser would be relieved from further inquiry in case the tenant informs him that he holds under a lease, but refuses to inform him as to the identity of the landlord, appears not to have been decided. He would, presumably, in such case, have no right to assume that the person in possession holds as tenant under the vendor.17
13. Fitzgerald v. Williamson, 85 Ala. 585, 5 So. 309; King v. Paulk, 85 Ala. 186, 4 So. 825; Griffin v. Hall, 111 Ala. 601, 20 So. 48; Wahrenberger v. Waid, 8 Colo. App. 200, 45 Pac. 518; Stockton v. National Bank of Jacksonville, 45 Fla. 590, 34 So. 897; Veasie v. Parker, 23 Me. 170. Loughridge v. Bowland, 52 Miss. 546; Conlee v. Mcdowell, 15 Neb. 189, 18 N. W. 60. See Mccormick v. Mocorrcick Harvesting Mach. Co., 122 Iowa, 393, 95 N. W. 181.
14. See Phelan v. Brady, 119 N. Y. 587, 8 L. R. A. 211, 23 N. E. 1109.
15. See Mainwaring v. Tem-pleman, 51 Tex. 212.
16. Haworth V. Taylor, 108 111. 275; Mallett v. Kaehler, 141 111. 70, 30 N. E. 549; Hannan v. Seidentopf, 113 Iowa, 659, 86 N. W. 44; Penrose v. Cooper, 86 Kan. 597, 121 Pac. 1103; Duff v. Mcdonough, 155 Pa. 10, 25 A11. 608; Mainwaring v. Templeman, 51 Tox. 212; Duncan v. Matula, (Tex. Civ. App.) 26 S. W. 638.
There are occasional decisions that, if the person in possession held originally as tenant under the vendor, the fact that the vendor transferred his reversionary interest to another does not of itself, without any attornment by the tenant to the transferee, make the latter the landlord, so as to charge a subsequent purchaser with notice of the latter's rights by reason of the tenant's possession.18 This requirement of attornment, which is, in connection with the transfer of a reversion, for most purposes obsolete,19 is presumably to be regarded as based on the theory that until the tenant has in some way recognized his new landlord, an inquiry of him would usually not result in the discovery of the transfer of the reversion.
It has been decided in a number of states that, by the possession of a tenant under a lease, a purchaser is chargeable with notice, not only of the tenant's rights under the lease, but also of any right which he may have not under the lease, as, for instance, under an agreement by the lessor to sell the property to him.20
17. There is a decision that, although a purchaser, upon inquiring of the tenant in possession, is told by him that he is holding as tenant of the vendor, he is nevertheless charged with notice of the rights of another, under whom the tenant is actually holding as tenant. Clarke v. Beck, 72 Ga. 127. This decision is based on the (mistaken) theory that a tenant can never deny his landlord's title. See 1 Tiffany, Landlord & Tenant pp. 448-450. The hardship on the purchaser seems obvious.
18. Mccormick v. Mccormick Harvesting Mach. Co., 122 Iowa, 393, 95 N. W. 181; Wilkins v. Bevier, 43 Minn. 213, 19 Am. St.
Rep. 288, 45 N. W. 157; Ferguson v. Mccrary, 20 Tex. Civ. App. 529, 50 S. W. 472.
19. Ante. Sec. 53(a).
20. Brewer v. Brewer, 19 Ala. 481; Mcrae v. Mcminn, 17 Fla. 876; Coari v. Olson, 91 111. 273; Crooks v. Jenkins, 124 Iowa, 317, 104 Am. St. Rep. 326, 100 N. W. 82; Russell v. Moore, 3 Mete. (Ky.) 476; Hull v. Noble, 40 Me. 481; Dengler v. Fowler, 94 Neb. 021, 143 N. W. 944; Havens v. Bliss, 26 N. J. Eq. 363; Wood v. Price, 79 N. J. Eq. 620, 28 L. R. A. (N. S.) 772, Ann. Cas. 1913A 1210, 81 Atl. 983; Chester-man v. Gardner, 5 Johns. Ch. (N. Y.) 29; Kerr v. Day, 14 Pa. 112, 53 Am. Dec. 526; Anderson v.
These decisions are based on English decisions, to the same effect,21 and involve merely an application of the general rule, as recognized in England, that a purchaser is under a primary duty to inquire of the person or persons in possession as to the character and extent of his rights. They do not consider the effect of the possible record of the lease, but presumably, if the lease were recorded, since the tenant would then have a record title to explain the possession, the purchaser would, in some states,22 be relieved from any duty of inquiry as to the rights of the tenant apart from the lease.23
It has been intimated that if the tenant under n lease acquired the fee simple title immediately before the purchase of the land by another, the purchaser, knowing that such tenant has been in possession as tenant under a lease, may presume that his possession is still under the lease, and is under no obligation to make inquiry as to his rights.24 But such a view cannot well be harmonized with the decisions, above referred to,25 that by the possession of a tenant under a lease a
Brinsner, 129 Pa. 376, 6 L. R. A. 205, 11 Atl. 809, Is Atl. 520. In Texas a contrary rule appears to prevail. Smith v. Miller, 63 Tex. 72; Brown v. Roland, 11 Tex. Civ. App. 648, 33 S. W. 373; Hamilton v. Ingram, 13 Tex. Civ. App. 604, 35 S. W. 748. But see Jackson v. Walls, - Tex. Civ. App. -. 187 S. W. 676.
21. Allen v. Anthony, 1 Meriv. 282; Barnhart v. Greenshields, 9 Moore P. C. 18; Daniels v. Davison, 16 Ves. 249
22. Ante, Sec. 571(c)..
23. It was so decided In Red River Valley Land & Investment Co. v. Smith, 7 N. D. 236, 74 N. W. 194; Hamilton v. Ingram, 13 Tex. Civ. App. 604, 35 S. W. 748. Contra. Dengler v. Fowler,