The Jensen Litigation Firm, PLLC represents people needing to “quiet” title to their real estate. People hire us to figure out if their land has title defects and start a quiet title action to fix them. If you need an attorney to resolve title issues with your land, we can help. Contact us now before you lose any legal remedies.
How do I know if there are ownership problems with my land?
As a real estate owner, you want to be sure that your claim to ownership is superior to all other persons. There can be problems with legal description of your property, and problems with the chain of title. If you have these problems, it is important to speak with an attorney to promptly resolve the issue.
Most people with a mortgage have title insurance required by the lender. Before closing, the title insurance company will review abstracts for purposes of the legal description and chain of title. Sometimes, the title insurance company will require, as a condition of closing, a Letter of Undertaking from a law firm that will quiet title after closing.
Your land could have title defects caused by any number of issues. The Minnesota Title Standards generally require a review of title records going back 40 years, with some exceptions. During that 40 years, there could have been misdescriptions of the property, ambiguities, conveyances made without authority, easements gone wrong, or other issues. Seemingly small issues can actually be big concerns for your ownership of the land.
How to I remedy title defects to land in Minnesota?
Landowners have several remedies to address title defects. You may be able to get a quit claim deed from a prior owner or other person to resolve the title issue. You may be able to negotiate an agreement with a person holding a stray interest in your land.
You may also need to consider a court action such as a:
- Quiet title action, which is also known as an action to determine adverse claims under Minn. Stat. § 559.01.
- Declaratory judgment under Minn. Stat. § 555.01.
- Adverse possession claim
- Prescriptive easement claim
- Action to determine boundary lines under Minn. Stat. § 559.23.
The main goal is to get a court determination that you own the land. These actions generally require notice to interested persons as defined in the statutes. This litigation is often not contentious, but can be challenging. If those persons named as defendants do not respond, any potential interest they may have in the land will be extinguished.
Why is it important for an attorney to handle a quiet title claim?
Legal descriptions and chains of title are very technical issues. Many attorneys even find this exercise difficult. If not done correctly, you could lose an interest in the land. The attorney will have to review the abstract, certificate of title, and real estate filings. Upon review, the attorney will identify parties to be named in the court action.
We have the knowledge and experience to handle quiet title issues. Do not hesitate to contact us if:
- You believe that someone else may have lingering interests in your property.
- Your title insurer is requiring a quiet title action as a condition of closing.
- The legal description of your property is vague, ambiguous, inaccurate, or problematic in other ways.
- You want to sell your land but the chain of title has issues.
- You have been served with a lawsuit related to title to land.
With offices in Shakopee (Scott County) and Litchfield (Meeker County), we handle quiet title matters throughout the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota.