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Leach & Sullivan

How quiet title action can help homeowners with title issues

| Jun 3, 2021 | Uncategorized

The title to your home is the documentation that validates that you are the one who owns it. The record of title helps people prove their ownership and also allows companies or individuals to place liens against the title.

Liens on title create a record that forces accountability by preventing someone from selling or refinancing a property without paying off what they owe. Sometimes, the lien is the result of an owner using the property as collateral. Other times, it is the result of legal action taken by creditors against a homeowner. Unfortunately, the information that the government maintains about the ownership of a property or the liens against its title aren’t always accurate.

The state records regarding your property’s title will affect everything from your property tax obligations to your right to resell your home. If you are in a situation where title issues might pose a threat to your property rights or could halt a sale or refinance transaction, you may need to look into filing a quiet title action for the property.

Quiet title actions help resolve outstanding title blemishes

Most of the information about the chain of ownership for your property will reflect deeds executed before the transfer of the parcel and the improvements upon it. There will also sometimes be recorded information about current liens, including your primary mortgage, a home equity line of credit or even a mechanic’s lien. There could also be easements recorded on the title of the property.

Most of the time, the public record is relatively accurate and reflects only current liens and ownership information, but sometimes, outdated information or even fraud could complicate the title for your property. Owners can address these blemishes by executing and recording deeds in some cases. Other times, they need to go to court to ask a judge to quiet title.

In a quiet title action, you request a hearing with courts and then provide documentation that clearly shows you have paid the account associated with the lien in full or otherwise proving that the blemishes on title are not an accurate representation. A judge, after reviewing your evidence and removing those blemishes, effectively protects your ownership right by correcting the public records.

Filing the necessary paperwork to request a hearing and then gathering evidence will be among the most important steps for a property owner to take when they need to go to court to address outstanding title issues.