45-36.15. Affidavit of satisfaction: authorization to submit for recording.

(a) Subject to subsections (b) and (c) of this section, a satisfaction agent may sign and submit for recording an affidavit of satisfaction of a security instrument complying with G.S. 45-36.16 if the satisfaction agent has reasonable grounds to believe that the secured creditor has received full payment or performance of the secured obligation and one or more of the following apply:

(1) The secured creditor has not, to the knowledge of the satisfaction agent, submitted for recording a satisfaction of a security instrument or otherwise caused the security instrument to be satisfied of record pursuant to any of the methods provided in G.S. 45-37(a) within 30 days after the effective date of a notification complying with G.S. 45-36.14(a).

(2) The secured creditor has authorized the satisfaction agent to sign and submit for recording an affidavit of satisfaction.

(3) The satisfaction agent has in his or her possession the original security instrument and the original bond, note, or other instrument secured thereby, with an endorsement of payment and satisfaction appearing thereon made by one or more of the following: (i) the secured creditor; (ii) the trustee or substitute trustee, if the security instrument is a deed of trust; (iii) an assignee of the secured creditor; or (iv) any bank, savings and loan association, savings bank, or credit union chartered under the laws of North Carolina or any other state or the United States having an office or branch in North Carolina, when so endorsed in the name of the institution by an officer thereof.

(4) The satisfaction agent has in his or her possession the original security instrument intended to secure the payment of money or the performance of any other obligation, together with the original bond, note, or other instrument secured, or the original security instrument alone if the security instrument itself sets forth the obligation secured or other obligation to be performed and does not call for or recite any note, bond, or other instrument secured by it if, at the time the affidavit of satisfaction is to be signed and submitted, all such instruments are more than 10 years old counting from the maturity date of the last obligation secured. If the instrument or instruments secured by the security instrument have an endorsement of partial payment, satisfaction, performance, or discharge within the period of 10 years, the period of 10 years shall be counted from the date of the most recent endorsement.

(5) The satisfaction agent has in his or her possession the original security instrument given to secure the bearer or holder of any negotiable instruments transferable solely by delivery, together with all the evidences of indebtedness secured thereby, marked paid and satisfied in full and signed by the bearer or holder thereof.

(6) After diligent inquiry, the satisfaction agent has been unable to determine the identity of the secured creditor because, for example, the last known secured creditor no longer exists and the satisfaction agent has been unable to identify any successor-in-interest to the last known secured creditor.

(b) A satisfaction agent may not sign and submit for recording an affidavit of satisfaction of a security instrument if it has received a notification under G.S. 45-36.14(a)(5)b. stating that the secured obligation remains unsatisfied.

(c) Unless the satisfaction agent has in his or her possession the instruments described in subdivision (a)(3), (a)(4), or (a)(5) of this section or the satisfaction agent is unable to determine the identity of the secured creditor because, for example, the last known assignee of the security instrument no longer exists and the satisfaction agent has been unable to identify any successor-in-interest to the last known assignee, a satisfaction agent who receives a notification under G.S. 45-36.14(a)(5)c. stating that the security instrument has been assigned may not submit for recording an affidavit of satisfaction of the security instrument without first:

(1) Giving a notification of intent to submit for recording an affidavit of satisfaction to the identified assignee at the identified address; and

(2) Complying with G.S. 45-36.14 with respect to the identified assignee. (2005-123, s. 1; 2013-204, s. 2.3.)