About Statutes

This page accesses the Code of Maryland (Statutes) and the Maryland Municipal Charters and Resolutions as compiled and maintained by the Department of Legislative Services.

The Code is arranged by and organized into “Articles” (e.g. Transportation Article), which are further subdivided into “titles”, “subtitles”, “sections”, “subsections”, “paragraphs”, subparagraphs”, etc.

Note that the “official” compilation of the laws (Chapters) enacted at each session of the General Assembly is published by the State as the “Laws of Maryland”, commonly referred to as the “Session Laws”. The Session Laws for each session are compiled chronologically by chapter number and serve as the source law from which the statutes accessed here are derived.

While the “Laws of Maryland” (Session Laws) constitute the official laws of the State, this Code and the annotated versions noted below are accepted as “evidence” of the law in all State courts and by all public offices and officials (See § 10-201 of the Courts & Judicial Proceedings Article). However, in the event of a conflict between the Code and the Session Laws, the Session Laws prevail.

Note: Annotated versions of the Code, published by LexisNexis and West, are available in book and online formats. These Annotated Codes include references to case law, related citations, and explanatory notations.

The Municipal Charters are updated each year by incorporating all charter resolutions received by the Department through May 31 of that year. Individual Municipal Resolutions are published to the General Assembly website as they are received by the Department.

Statute Text

Article - Real Property
(a)   The purposes of land patent proceedings are to:
(1)   Avoid uncertainties caused by the existence of vacant land, by promptly ruling on the claim of a patent applicant;
(2)   Give governmental bodies priority in reserving vacant land for public use; and
(3)   In the absence of public need, benefit the community by expanding the tax base as previously untaxed, vacant land is recognized and made to contribute its rightful share towards financing government.
(b)   It is the intention of the General Assembly, therefore, that the State’s land patent proceedings provide a simple, convenient, and prompt method for reserving vacant land for the public use of governmental bodies, for promoting private ownership of vacant land and, in certain instances, for clarifying the ownership of land previously patented.