Disputes over the ownership of real estate can arise in various ways. Filing a quiet title action in court may be necessary when parties cannot resolve these ownership disputes on their own. If you are facing a real estate ownership dispute that may require you to file a quiet title action, you likely need to consult an Arizona real estate lawyer for legal advice and representation.
What Is a Quiet Title Action?
In a quiet title action filed under A.R.S. § 12-1101, a party asks the court to determine property ownership and clear any “clouds” on the title to the property. A quiet title action is necessary when there are competing claims to ownership concerning real estate. The court order of ownership that results from a quiet title action allows the property owner to sell, transfer, or encumber the property by taking out a mortgage and using it for collateral.
When Should You File a Quiet Title Action?
A quiet title action may be necessary whenever there is an ownership dispute over a piece of land. If the parties cannot reach an agreement on ownership, the ongoing dispute can adversely affect a party’s ability to use or transfer the property as they choose. You may wish to file a quiet title action in various situations.
Unclear property lines, old property surveys, and easements across property can lead to confusion about who owns certain parcels of property or portions of those parcels of property. In addition, previous owners of adjoining real estate may have had informal agreements about using one another’s land for access or other reasons, leading to claims of ownership or easement rights by one property owner. Disputes such as these are resolvable through quiet title actions.
In some cases, a property owner may pass away without a will, leaving no indication as to who should inherit the property. One person may have been living in the property at the time of the owner’s death and claiming ownership of the property. Other heirs of the property owner also may come forward and wish to take ownership of the property. A quiet title action may be necessary to resolve this type of dispute.
Joint Ownership Disputes
When more than one person purchases real estate as partners, they may have a partnership agreement that outlines their rights and responsibilities as to the ownership of the property. If one partner breaches the partnership agreement, the remaining partner might file a quiet title action to seek full ownership of the property.
Invalid Deeds and Property Transfers
A quiet title action may also be appropriate when parties have improperly executed a deed or property transfer. For instance, if someone forges a deed or misrepresents a fact to obtain title to real estate, a quiet title action may be a way to resolve that issue. Furthermore, suppose a property owner signs a deed transferring the property to a third party, but they did not have the mental or legal capacity to do so, or they were subject to undue influence when they signed the legal documents. In this case, a quiet title action may be necessary to invalidate the property transfer.
We Are Here to Help You with Your Arizona Real Estate Legal Needs
We aim to help you understand each step of your quiet title or other real estate case and advocate on your behalf throughout the process. Contact the offices of Provident Law today at (480) 388-3343 or online and schedule an appointment to speak with an Arizona real estate attorney about your legal matter. We are ready to provide the legal advice you need.