ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey Standards: What Real Estate Counsel Need to Know

Survey Exceptions and Endorsements in Title Insurance Policies

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Monday, April 6, 2020

Recorded event now available

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Program Materials

This CLE webinar will explain the ALTA/NSPS Standards and identify the recent, significant modifications, including changes to Table A. The panel will also discuss how title insurers typically address various survey matters in title policies and the utility of survey endorsements.


Land surveys are primary due diligence tools in real estate transactions or development deals. They depict location, boundary, and topography, with a description of improvements, encumbrances, and other observations.

The Minimum Standard Detail Requirements for ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys, revised in 2016, are now called the ALTA/NSPS Standards. Practitioners must understand the revised Standards (including Table A) to ensure surveys are correctly prepared.

Surveys can reveal significant title matters which may appear as exceptions to title coverage. Counsel must be able to address survey issues with the title company (and purchasers and lenders) and know which survey or other endorsements can resolve survey matters.

Listen as our authoritative panel reviews the revised ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey Standards. The panel will look at changes from the 2011 Standards, including the revised Table A, with an emphasis on reviewing surveys from the perspective of title insurers.



  1. ALTA/NSPS land survey overview
    1. Purpose of survey
    2. Components of survey
  2. Section 4 New considerations related to records research
  3. Section 5.B. Changes to subsections relating to rights of way and access
  4. Section 5.E.iv. Treatment of utilities vis-à-vis evidence of easements
  5. Section 6.B. When the surveyor prepares a new description
  6. Section 6.C. Addressing easements on the plat of survey
  7. Changes in Table A
    1. Item 6 Addressing zoning on the survey
    2. Item 11 Utility investigations
    3. Former Item 18 Evidence of use of the property as a solid waste dump, sump or sanitary landfill
    4. Item 18 Addressing wetlands
    5. Item 19 Insured (Schedule A) easements


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What does a land survey accomplish, and when should it be conducted?
  • What documentation is to be provided to the surveyor under the new Standards, and what is the surveyor's responsibility if those documents are not forthcoming?
  • How do the new Standards address rights of way and easements?


Kent, Gary
Gary R. Kent, P.S.

Professional Surveyor
Schneider Geomatics

Mr. Kent is a past-president of both ACSM and the Indiana Society of Professional Land Surveyors. He has a BS...  |  Read More

Slade, Mary
Mary A. Slade

Underwriting Counsel
First American Title

Ms. Slade is the 2018-2019 Real Estate Committee Chair and 2017-2018 Chair of the Indiana State Bar Association's...  |  Read More

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