Understanding Quiet Title Actions
Sometimes when you sell your property, the title company might say there is a “cloud on the title” and you need to file a “quiet title action”. What even is that?
Quiet Title Action
In Michigan, a quiet title action is a legal proceeding that seeks to establish clear and marketable title to real property. It is often used when there are conflicting or unclear ownership interests in a piece of land and when there may be potential defects in the chain of title. Any party interested in the property can file this type of action as the goal is to eliminate any clouds on the title and resolve ownership disputes.
Examples of Quiet Title Action
There are many scenarios from which quiet title actions stem. The most common example is clearing title to property acquired from a mortgage or tax foreclosure sale. In this case, a quiet title action is required because you need to inform the foreclosed party that this is their last chance to contest the foreclosure before you become the legal owner.
A quiet title action could also be initiated for litigious reasons. Suppose a seller agreed to sell a piece of property but died before the transaction was finalized, leaving a will in which the property was given to a relative. In that case, the buyer and relative may have grounds to pursue a quiet title action. The relative, because the will has left them an interest in the property; and the buyer, because the seller signed a contract promising to sell them the property.
Additionally, suppose you have paid off your mortgage, but the lien holder failed to record a discharge of the mortgage. In that case, you might need to file a quiet title action to remove this cloud. A quiet title action can even be used in resolving boundary disputes. Sometimes, properties with tax liens or unpaid taxes can also require these actions.
Contact the Professionals
By addressing these issues through legal means, you can ensure that any outstanding debts and interests related to the property are resolved. Quiet title actions can be complex legal processes that require careful attention to detail and knowledge of state-specific laws. Therefore, the assistance of an experienced attorney is essential.