Township of Upper Moreland, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Adopted as Title 2, Ch. 7, Art. 4, of the 1977 Code[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This chapter was adopted 12-7-1977 and amended 10-6-1986 by Ord. No. 1112; 11-5-1986 by Ord. No. 1115; 9-6-1988 by Ord. No. 1165; and 5-7-2007 by Ord. No. 1541.
A. 
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ACCEPTANCE
The making, execution or final delivery of a document by all parties to a transaction.
ACQUIRED COMPANY
A real estate company where a change in the ownership interest in the company, however effected:
(1) 
Does not affect the continuity of the company; and
(2) 
Of itself or together with prior changes has the effect of transferring, directly or indirectly, 90% or more of the total ownership interest in the company within a period of three years.
ASSOCIATION
A partnership, limited partnership, or any other form of unincorporated enterprise, owned or conducted by two or more persons, other than a private trust or decedent's estate.
BOARD
The Board of Township Commissioners of the Township of Upper Moreland, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
CORPORATION
A corporation or joint-stock association, business trust, or banking institution which is organized under the laws of this commonwealth, the United States, or any other state, territory or foreign country or dependency.
DISTRICT
The Township of Upper Moreland, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
DOCUMENT
Any deed, instrument, or writing which conveys, transfers, demises, vests, confirms, or evidences any transfer or demise or title to real estate, but does not include wills, mortgages, deeds of trust, or other instruments of like character given as security for a debt and deeds of release thereof to the debtor, land contracts whereby the legal title does not pass to the grantee until the total consideration specified in the contract has been paid or any cancellation thereof unless the consideration is payable over a period of time exceeding 30 years or instruments which solely grant, vest, or confirm a public utility easement. "Document" shall also include a declaration of acquisition required to be presented for recording under § 310-66B of this article.
MEMBERS OF THE SAME FAMILY
Any individual, such individual's brothers and sisters, the brothers and sisters of such individual's parents and grandparents, the ancestors and lineal descendants of any of the foregoing, a spouse of any of the foregoing and the estate of any of the foregoing. Individuals related by the half blood or legal adoption shall be treated as if they were related by the whole blood.
PERSON
Every natural person, association, or corporation. Whenever used in any clause prescribing and imposing a fine or imprisonment, or both, the term "person," as applied to associations, shall include the responsible members or general partners thereof and, as applied to corporations, the officers thereof.
(1) 
Any lands, tenements, or hereditaments within this commonwealth, including, without limitation, buildings, structures, fixtures, mines, minerals, oil, gas, quarries, spaces with or without upper or lower boundaries, trees, and other improvements, immovables or interest which by custom, usage or law pass with a conveyance of land, but excluding permanently attached machinery and equipment in an industrial plant.
(2) 
A condominium unit.
(3) 
A tenant-stockholder's interest in a cooperative housing corporation, trust or association under a proprietary lease or occupancy agreement.
REAL ESTATE COMPANY
A corporation or association which is primarily engaged in the business of holding, selling or leasing real estate, 90% or more of the ownership interest in which is held by 35 or fewer persons and which: (1) derives 60% or more of its annual gross receipts from the ownership or disposition of real estate; or (2) holds real estate, the value of which comprises 90% or more of the value of its entire tangible asset holdings exclusive of tangible assets which are freely transferable and actively traded on an established market.
SECRETARY
The Secretary of the Board of Township Commissioners of the Township of Upper Moreland, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
TAX
The tax imposed, assessed, and levied by this article.
(1) 
Any interest in real estate which endures for a period of time, the termination of which is not fixed or ascertained by a specific number of years, including, without limitation, an estate in fee simple, life estate, or perpetual leasehold; or
(2) 
Any interest in real estate enduring for a fixed period of years but which, either by reason of the length of the term or the grant of a right to extend the term by renewal or otherwise, consists of a group of rights approximating those of an estate in fee simple, life estate, or perpetual leasehold, including, without limitation, a leasehold interest or possessory interest under a lease or occupancy agreement for a term of 30 years or more or a leasehold interest or possessory interest in real estate in which the lessee has equity. In determining the term of a lease, it shall be presumed that a right or option to renew or extend a lease will be exercised if the rental charge to the lessee is fixed or if a method for calculating the rental charge is established.
TRANSACTION
The making, executing, delivering, accepting, or presenting for recording of a document.
TREASURER
The duly elected and acting Treasurer of the Township of Upper Moreland, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
(1) 
In the case of any bona fide sale of real estate at arm's length for actual monetary worth, the amount of the actual consideration therefor, paid or to be paid, including liens or other encumbrances thereon existing before the transfer and not removed thereby, whether or not the underlying indebtedness is assumed, and ground rents or a commensurate part thereof, where such liens or other encumbrances and ground rents also encumber or are charged against other real estate;
(2) 
In the case of a gift, sale by execution upon a judgment or upon the foreclosure of a mortgage by a judicial officer, transactions without consideration or for consideration less than the actual monetary worth of the real estate, a taxable lease, an occupancy agreement, a leasehold or possessory interest, any exchange of properties, or the real estate of an acquired company, the actual monetary worth of the real estate determined by adjusting the assessed value of the real estate for local real estate tax purposes for the common level ratio of assessed values to market values of the taxing district as established by the State Tax Equalization Board, or a commensurate part of the assessment where the assessment includes other real estate;
(3) 
In the case of an easement or other interest in real estate, the value of which is not determinable under clause (1) or (2) above, the actual monetary worth of such interest; or
(4) 
The actual consideration for or actual monetary worth of any executory agreement for the construction of buildings, structures, or other permanent improvements to real estate between the grantor and other persons existing before the transfer and not removed thereby or between the grantor, the agent or principal of the grantor or a related corporation, association or partnership and the grantee existing before or effective with the transfer.
B. 
Throughout this article, the singular shall include the plural, and the masculine shall include the feminine and neuter.
A. 
Upper Moreland Township adopts the provisions of Article XI-D of the Tax Reform Code of 1971 and imposes a realty transfer tax as authorized under that article, subject to the rate limitations therein. Every person who makes, executes, delivers, accepts, or presents for recording any document or in whose behalf any document is made, executed, delivered, accepted or presented for recording, shall be subject to pay for and in respect to the transaction or any part thereof, or in respect of the vellum parchment or paper upon which such document is written or printed, a tax at the rate of 1/2 of 1% of the value of the real estate represented by such document, which tax shall be payable at the earlier of the time the document is presented for recording or within 30 days of acceptance of such document, or within 30 days of becoming an acquired company.
B. 
Within 30 days after becoming an acquired company, such company shall present a declaration of acquisition with the recorder of deeds of each county in which it holds real estate for the affixation of documentary stamps and recording. Such declaration shall set forth the value of real estate holdings of the acquired company in such county.
C. 
Except as otherwise provided in § 310-74, documents which make, confirm or evidence any transfer or demise of title to real estate between associations or corporations and the members, partners, shareholders, or stockholders thereof are fully taxable. For the purposes of this article, corporations and associations are entities separate from their members, partners, stockholders, or shareholders.
The tax hereby levied shall apply to or be imposed upon all transaction, transfers or privileges arising out of agreements or contracts to sell or any other arrangements made and entered into by the parties hereto prior to the date of the adoption of this article.
The tax hereby levied shall apply to or be imposed upon all transactions, transfers or privileges arising out of agreements or contracts to sell or any other arrangements made and entered into by the parties hereto after the date of the adoption of this article.
The tax hereby levied shall apply to or be imposed upon all transactions, transfers or privileges where there are no agreements made and entered into by the parties thereto.
Any tax imposed under § 310-66A that is not paid by the date the tax is due shall bear interest as prescribed for interest on delinquent municipal claims under the Act of 1923, P.L. 207, No. 153, 53 P.S. § 7101 et seq., as amended, known as "The Municipal Claims and Tax Liens Act." The interest rate shall be 10% per annum.
A penalty of 10% is hereby imposed upon all taxes which are unpaid at the time they are due and payable in accordance with the provisions of this article.
All taxes imposed by this article, together with interest from the due date and the penalty thereon, may be recovered as other debts of like character are now by law recovered.
The tax imposed by this article shall become a lien upon the lands, tenements, or hereditaments, or any interest therein, situate wholly or partly within the Township, which are described in or conveyed by the document which is the subject of tax imposed under § 310-66, the said lien to begin at the time when the tax is due and payable and continue until discharged by payment or in accordance with the law, the Township Solicitor is authorized to file a municipal or tax claim for said tax in the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, in accordance with the provisions of the Municipal Lien Act of 1923, the amendments and supplements thereto.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 7101 et seq.
A. 
Exempt parties. The United States, the commonwealth, or any of their instrumentalities, agencies, or political subdivisions shall be exempt from payment of the tax imposed by this article. The exemption of such governmental bodies shall not, however, relieve any other party to a transaction from liability for the tax.
B. 
Excluded transactions. The tax imposed by § 310-66 shall not apply to the following:
(1) 
A transfer to the commonwealth or to any of its instrumentalities, agencies, or political subdivisions by gift, dedication, or deed in lieu of condemnation or deed of confirmation in connection with condemnation proceedings, or a reconveyance by the condemning body of the property condemned to the owner of record at the time of condemnation, which reconveyance may include property line adjustments, provided said reconveyance is made within one year from the date of condemnation.
(2) 
A document which the commonwealth is prohibited from taxing under the Constitution or statutes of the United States.
(3) 
A conveyance to a municipality, township, school district, or county pursuant to acquisition by the municipality, township, school district, or county of a tax delinquent property at sheriff sale or tax claim bureau sale.
(4) 
A transfer for no or nominal actual consideration which corrects or confirms a transfer previously recorded, but which does not extend or limit existing record legal title of interest.
(5) 
A transfer or division in kind for no or nominal actual consideration of property passed by testate or intestate succession and held by cotenants; however, if any of the parties take shares greater in value than their undivided interest, tax is due on the excess.
(6) 
A transfer between husband and wife, between persons who were previously husband and wife who have since been divorced, provided the property or interest therein subject to such transfer was acquired by the husband and wife or husband or wife prior to the granting of the final decree in divorce, between parent and child or the spouse of such child, between brother or sister or spouse of a brother or sister and brother or sister of the spouse of a brother or sister and between a grandparent and grandchild or the spouse of such grandchild, except that a subsequent transfer by the grantee within one year shall be subject to tax as if the grantor were making such transfer.
(7) 
A transfer for no or nominal actual consideration of property passing by testate or intestate succession from a personal representative of a decedent to the decedent's devisee or heir.
(8) 
A transfer for no or nominal actual consideration to a trustee of an ordinary trust where the transfer of the same property would be exempt if the transfer was made directly from the grantor to all of the possible beneficiaries, whether or not such beneficiaries are contingent or specifically named. No such exemption shall be granted unless the recorder of deeds is presented with a copy of the trust instrument that clearly identifies the grantor and all possible beneficiaries.
(9) 
A transfer for no or nominal actual consideration from a trustee to a beneficiary of an ordinary trust.
(10) 
A transfer for no or nominal actual consideration from trustee to successor trustee.
(11) 
A transfer: a) for no or nominal actual consideration between principal and agent for straw party; or b) from or to an agent or straw party where, if the agent or straw party were his principal, no tax would be imposed under this article. Where the document by which title is acquired by a grantee or statement of value fails to set forth that the property was acquired by the grantee from, or for the benefit of, his principal, there is a rebuttable presumption that the property is the property of the grantee in his capacity if the grantee claims an exemption from taxation under this clause.
(12) 
A transfer made pursuant to the statutory division of a nonprofit corporation, except where it is reasonably determined that the primary intent for such merger, consolidation or division is avoidance of the tax imposed by this article.
(13) 
A transfer from a corporation or association of real estate held of record in the name of the corporation or association where the grantee owns stock of the corporation of an interest in the association in the same proportion as his interest in or ownership of the real estate being conveyed and where the stock of the corporation or the interest in the association has been held by the grantee for more than two years.
(14) 
A transfer from a nonprofit industrial development agency or authority to a grantee of property conveyed by the grantee to that agency or authority as security for a debt of the grantee or a transfer to a nonprofit industrial development agency or authority.
(15) 
A transfer from a nonprofit industrial development agency or authority to a grantee purchasing directly from it, but only if: a) the grantee shall directly use such real estate for the primary purpose of manufacturing, fabricating, compounding, processing, publishing, research and development, transportation, energy conversion, energy production, pollution control, warehousing, or agriculture; and n) the agency or authority has the full ownership interest in the real estate transferred.
(16) 
A transfer by a mortgagor to the holder of a bona fide mortgage in default in lieu of a foreclosure, or a transfer pursuant to a judicial sale in which the successful bidder is the bona fide holder of a mortgage, unless the holder assigns the bid to another person.
(17) 
Any transfer between religious organizations or other bodies or persons holding title for a religious organization if such real estate is not being or has not been used by such transferor for commercial purposes.
(18) 
A transfer to a conservancy which possesses a tax-exempt status pursuant to Section 5.01(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 [68A Stat. 3, 26 U.S.C. § 501(c)(3)] and which has as its primary purpose preservation of land for historic, recreational, scenic, agricultural, or open-space opportunities.
(19) 
A transfer of real estate devoted to the business of agriculture to a family farm corporation by a member of the same family which directly owns at least 75% of each class of the stock thereof.
(20) 
A transfer between members of the same family of an ownership interest in a real estate company or family farm corporation.
(21) 
A transaction wherein the tax due is $1 or less.
(22) 
Leases for the production or extraction of coal, oil, natural gas, or minerals and assignments thereof.
C. 
In order to exercise any exclusion provided in this section, the true, full, and complete value of the transfer shall be shown on the statement of value. For leases of coal, oil, natural gas, or minerals, the statement of value may be limited to an explanation of the reason such document is not subject to tax under this article.
A. 
Where there is a transfer of a residential property by a licensed real estate broker which property was transferred to him within the preceding year as consideration for the purchase of other residential property, a credit for the amount of the tax paid at the time of the transfer to him shall be given to him toward the amount of the tax due upon the transfer.
B. 
Where there is a transfer by a builder of residential property which was transferred to the builder within the preceding year as consideration for the purchase of new, previously unoccupied residential property, a credit for the amount of the tax paid at the time of the transfer to the builder shall be given to the builder toward the amount of the tax due upon the transfer.
C. 
Where there is a transfer of real estate which is demised by the grantor, a credit for the amount of tax paid at the time of the demise shall be given the grantor toward the tax due upon the transfer.
D. 
Where there is a conveyance by deed of real estate which was previously sold under a land contract by the grantor, a credit for the amount of tax paid at the time of the sale shall be given the grantor toward the tax due upon the deed.
E. 
If the tax due upon the transfer is greater than the credit given under this section, the difference shall be paid. If the credit allowed is greater than the amount of tax due, no refund or carryover credit shall be allowed.
The tax herein imposed shall be fully paid and have priority out of the proceeds of any judicial sale of real estate before any other obligation, claim, lien, judgment, estate, or costs of the sale and of the writ upon which the sale is made, and the sheriff or other officer conducting said sale shall pay the tax herein imposed out of the first monies paid to him in connection therewith. If the proceeds of the sale are insufficient to pay the entire tax herein imposed, the purchaser shall be liable for the remaining tax.
Administration and collection:
A. 
The tax imposed under § 310-66 and all applicable interest and penalties shall be administered, collected and enforced under the Act of December 31, 1965, P.L. 1257, No. 511, as amended, known as "The Local Tax Enabling Act,"[1] provided that, if the correct amount of the tax is not paid by the last date prescribed for timely payment, Upper Moreland Township, pursuant to § 1102-D of the Tax Reform Code of 1971, 72 P.S. § 8102-D, authorizes and directs the Department of Revenue of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to determine, collect and enforce the tax, interest and penalties.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 6901 et seq., and 53 P.S. §§ 6924.101 to 6924.312.
B. 
The Recorder of Deeds of Montgomery County is hereby authorized and empowered, pursuant to § 1105-D of the Tax Reform Code of 1971, 72 P.S. § 8105-D, to act as collection agent for the collection of the taxes imposed by § 310-66 above and to remit such taxes to the Treasurer of the Township on a monthly basis.
Any person who shall make, execute, issue, deliver or accept, or cause to be made, executed, issued, delivered or accepted, any document without the full amount of tax thereon being duly paid or any person violating any of the provisions of this article shall be liable to a penalty not less than $50 nor more than $600 for each and every offense and, further, shall be required to pay the amount of tax, together with interest as is otherwise provided for herein, which should have been paid upon the document or documents and, upon default in the payment of the same for 10 days, shall be subject to 30 days' imprisonment.