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Quiet Title

 

An action to quiet title is a court procedure required to obtain an order from the court confirming that a party has a right to their real estate, free and clear from all other challenges or claims to title. Essentially the legal action ‘quiet’s” property title disputes.

Quiet title actions are very common after a Michigan property tax sale or auction. They’re used to negate any procedural issues about the tax sale, ensuring that the county clerk were done in accordance with Michigan statutes. When property is sold at a tax deed sale, the effect is to eliminate any claim that the prior owner or mortgage holder or lien holder may have to the title. When a successful bidder at a tax deed sale obtains the deed to the property, it should be free and clear of any other liens or encumbrances, except for certain excluded liens for municipalities, etc. Unfortunately, the buyer of the tax deed property does not have “marketable title” unless a quiet title action is performed.

Why is a Quiet Title action important?

If the matter involves a former tax sale, the buyer of a tax deed property cannot obtain title insurance bought at a tax deed sale until a complaint to quiet title action is filed and an court order is issued. Without title insurance, it is difficult to sell or finance the tax deed property. In a standard Michigan real estate transaction, the buyer will insist upon title insurance in order to insure the title to the property for the amount of the purchase price. Likewise, if a successful bidder of a tax deed property wants to refinance the property, a lender institution will require title insurance to insure title for the mortgage.

Sometimes the title issues has nothing to do with a former tax sale.  Perhaps there is a defect in the title that requires a final order from the court. The reasons for defects are endless, but the most common are lack of discharge, challenge to boundary lines, challenge to title ownership.   

Call David and his legal team to discuss whether a quiet title action is even appropriate for your specific circumstances.  

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FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Top Questions Concerning Quiet Title Actions.

Do you have other questions about quieting title? Get in touch with us today!

What does it mean to have "marketable title?"

Marketable title is held by any person or their successors, free and clear of any and all interests, claims and charges whatsoever.  A person does not have marketable title if the property in which the interest exists is in the ‘hostile’ possession of another. 

What does it mean to have a "cloud" on title? What can I do about it?

A “cloud” on title is anythinf that can invalidate or impair one’s title to real property or makes the marketability of a title uncertain. There are many things that can impair title such as an old mortgage that has not been discharged or a deed that was improperly signed or states the wrong parties. In order to clear the “cloud,” an action to quiet title needs to be filed in court.  Quieting a claim to title is a legal action to establish one’s property rights as superior to all others.  A  real estate attorney will review your title work, deeds and related surveys, and then file pleadings with a court to make a final determination that  “quiets’ any claims that can impair one’s interest in their property.   

Where can I find forms to quiet title?

There are no forms to quiet title to real estate. A quiet title action is performed by real estate attorneys. To quiet title is to litigate. If you have the time and experience to litigate a matter, and you are a licensed attorney, then you should feel right at home with the courts. If not, we suggest seeking a competent real estate attorney to assist you in the matter since facts and circumstances are different for each case.

I am trying to refinance a property that is owned jointly with another party. The problem is that I cannot locate theM, but I suspect they would not cooperate with me anyhow. What can I do?

You would need to file a quiet title action absent any cooperation from the joint owner. If a co-owner is not willing to refinance the property, then you will need to convince a judge to order the other party to endorse a deed or other refinancing documents. 

What if I have a border dispute and my neighbor does not agree with our property line?

Seek a real estate attorney to first review the survey and then discuss steps for filing suit. 

How long does a Quiet title action take?

Generally these legal actions take about 90 days to complete if other parties contest the Plaintiff’s claims.  Sometimes, an action can take longer as the law requires that all parties having possible claims to a property, are notified. 

 

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