North Carolina Supreme Court Affirms Limitations on Appraiser Liability
The North Carolina Supreme Court has held that purchasers of real property may not bring claims against appraisers retained by their lenders where the purchasers did not request or receive the appraisal reports, and where they did not interact with the appraisers. The opinion, Arnesen et al. v. Rivers Edge Golf Club & Plantation, Inc. et al., No. 375A14, rejects the notion that purchasers may simply rely on the appraisers’ work “by proxy” where the lender relies on the appraisal in making an underwriting decision. Instead, the opinion holds that appraisers do not owe unlimited duties to borrowers, who must actually and directly rely on the appraisal itself to be permitted to assert a claim. The appraisers in Arnesen were represented by Jacob H. Wellman and Natalia K. Isenberg of Teague, Campbell, Dennis & Gorham, LLP of Raleigh, North Carolina.