Real Estate Title Disputes Attorney Serving Southern California

Disputes involving titles can stop a real estate deal in its tracks. According to The Washington Post, over a third of all real estate deals require "extraordinary work" to resolve title issues. Title disputes usually arise due to disagreements over the exact owner of a piece of property or the area of land covered by such property. Undisclosed property liens, deed errors, easement issues, boundary disputes, or other encumbrances can take days, weeks, or even months to resolve. Any of these issues may affect your homeownership rights or invalidate a buyer's right to own the property.

If a title dispute is delaying one of your real estate transactions or if you are involved in a real estate title dispute, it is imperative that you consult with a knowledgeable California real estate attorney as soon as possible. The Martinez Law Office is committed to offering reliable legal services and comprehensive guidance in matters of real estate title disputes. As your legal counsel, I can evaluate your unique situation and determine the most effective way to address the issue and help you proceed with the sale. I can offer you the experienced legal counsel and advocacy you need.

Martinez Law Office proudly represents clients throughout Southern California, including Santa Ana, Orange, Los Angeles, and San Diego Counties.

Common Reasons a Title Ends Up in Dispute

Titles can end up being disputed over a variety of different issues, but some of the most common reasons why a title may end up in dispute include:

Easement Issues

An easement gives an individual or entity the legal right to use someone else's land for a particular purpose. Easement holders are legally permitted to occupy or use the land for a specific purpose, though the landowner still retains title to the property. If easements are not discovered early enough, they may cause title disputes.

Error in Public Record

Mistakes in public records, including names or address misspellings, errors in recording property information, inaccurate square footage, unreleased mortgages, and improperly filed papers, can all lead to title disputes.

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Boundary Dispute

Where your property begins and ends can bring about a disagreement between homeowners and their neighbors. Boundary disputes may occur when two adjacent property owners argue about the location of a property line.

Forgeries

Fabricated or forged documents that affect property ownership may be filed within public records, obscuring the property's rightful ownership. Once these forgery issues are discovered, your ownership rights for the property may be in jeopardy.

Unknown Heirs

If a previously unknown owner with a Will that grants them rights to the property appears after the death of a past property owner, there may be a title dispute.

Unknown Liens

A judgment lien is a court order that allows a creditor to take possession of a debtor's real property if the debtor fails to fulfill his or her contractual obligations. If a previous owner is behind on payments, a judgment lien may be issued on the property. Irrespective of the new property owner, the debt remains with the property and could lead to a title dispute.

Illegal Deed

A deed may be considered illegal if it was signed by someone who is incapacitated or a minor. This ultimately affects the rights of the buyer who wishes to purchase the property.

Undiscovered Encumbrances

Due to a previous covenant, lien, or mortgage, a third party may lay non-financial claims on a property. Thus, limiting the use of such property.

Regardless of the reason for the dispute, the real estate transaction will be delayed until the dispute is resolved. Depending on the nature of the dispute, the real estate transaction could be delayed for weeks, months, or even longer.

How Title Disputes Are Resolved

Many title disputes can be resolved by filing any of the following documents:

  • A Quitclaim Deed: Filing a quitclaim deed removes an heir and clears up the title among  co-owners or spouses.
  • A Release of Lien/Judgment: Filing a release of lien or judgment will remove spousal support, child support, or any paid mortgage liens that were previously issued on the property.
  • A Deed of Reconveyance: Filing a deed of reconveyance will record payment of a mortgage in full and indicate that the debtor has been released from the mortgage debt.

If a property seller is unaware that a lien, judgment, or other encumbrance is attached to the property, addressing such issues can take days, weeks, or even months. Also, transferring the title of properties with more than one owner will require the signature of all co-owners. If you're unable to locate the property's co-owners, the legal steps to resolve the title dispute may take even longer.

Hiring a Title Dispute Attorney
in Southern California

Resolving a title dispute can involve a lot of complexities. If you’re trying to locate the property's co-owners for their signatures, that can elongate the entire process even more. If you are trying to resolve a title dispute that is delaying a real estate transaction, it is crucial that you consult with a knowledgeable California real estate attorney to protect your rights and receive the legal guidance you need to move forward.

With over 40 years of legal experience, I have devoted my career to offering reliable legal services and guidance on legal issues related to title disputes, liens, and easements. As an experienced California real estate attorney, I will perform a detailed title search and review all related documents to the property. Using my extensive expertise, I will work to clear the title, evaluate potential issues, determine the most effective way to resolve any lingering title issues, and help facilitate your real estate transaction.

Experienced Title Dispute Attorney Serving Clients
in Southern California

A one-on-one consultation with a knowledgeable California real estate attorney can help prevent the lengthy delays and potential headaches involved in addressing title disputes before closing a property transaction. Contact the Martinez Law Office today to schedule a case evaluation. I can offer you the comprehensive legal counsel and advocacy you need to navigate the complexities of your case. I’m proud to represent clients throughout Southern California, including Orange County, Los Angeles County, and San Diego County.