NYC Quiet Title Action Attorney

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Quiet title actions are used in real estate proceedings to resolve conflicts or title issues over property ownership. Its purpose is to “quiet” any title disputes, effectively clearing and affirming the ownership of the property in question.

At Richman Law Firm PLLC, we are skilled in real estate litigation and know how clouded titles can delay successful transactions. Our team of attorneys, led by Scott Richman, offers strategic legal representation to fight for true ownership and protect your property. Contact us for a free consultation.

Understanding Quiet Title Actions

Several issues can damage a property’s title, making its ownership uncertain. For instance, inheritance disputes can arise when multiple heirs claim a property without clear legal documentation.

Similarly, errors in recording deeds or the presence of old, unresolved claims can lead to ambiguity about the rightful owner. Claims from lien holders or previous owners also add another layer of complexity to a title. In such cases, a quiet title action works as a legal remedy.

This court procedure allows individuals to initiate a special legal proceeding against any party challenging their ownership. The goal is for the property owner to gain a clear title. The court examines all evidence and claims through this action, ultimately granting a judgment that resolves any disputes.

Applications of Quiet Title Actions

Quiet title actions are applicable in various situations where property ownership is in dispute or when the title is clouded. An experienced NYC real estate attorney can file a quiet title action when necessary to help clients achieve their real estate goals. Below are some common issues where filing an action to quiet a title might be the answer:

Easement Disputes

Easement disputes arise when there is a disagreement over the right to use a portion of a property for a specific purpose. These disputes could stem from issues such as overuse of the land, obstruction of access, or disagreements about maintenance responsibilities. For instance, a homeowner may block a shared driveway, or a utility company might exceed its designated easement area.

These issues highlight the importance of legal documentation in establishing and upholding easement agreements, and they underscore the necessity for all parties to have a mutual understanding of their rights and responsibilities concerning the property in question. A quiet title action could resolve these disputes and clarify the rights of all parties involved.

Reinstating a Chain of Title

The chain of title refers to the historical sequence of legal ownership of a property. It traces the transfer of the title from one owner to another, from the original grant to the present day. However, gaps in this chain can occur for various reasons, such as missing deeds or unrecorded transfers. These gaps can lead to disputes about the property’s rightful ownership.

A quiet title action can be instrumental in reinstating a chain of a title. It allows for thoroughly examining all recorded documents and transactions associated with the property. This process ensures that any gaps in the chain are identified and rectified, reinstating a clear and undisputed chain of title.

Inheritance Disputes

Inheritance disputes often arise when a property owner dies without a clear will or estate plan, leaving multiple heirs to claim ownership. Inheritance disputes can lead to conflict among family members or other potential inheritors.

In such cases, a quiet title action can be initiated to determine the rightful owner of the property. By examining all claims and evidence, the court can resolve the dispute and grant ownership to the legitimate heir(s), ensuring that all other claims are dismissed.

Adverse Possession Disputes

Adverse possession allows someone to become the rightful owner of land that belongs to someone else. This can happen if they use the land openly and continuously for ten years under New York law. The person using the land must meet specific conditions under common law to claim the land.

Disputes can arise when someone claims ownership of a property based on adverse possession. This often occurs when the individual occupies or uses the land without the owner’s knowledge or consent. The person claiming adverse possession must prove their occupation was continuous, open, notorious, exclusive, and adverse to the owner’s rights.

A quiet title action can be used to resolve adverse possession disputes. If successful, the claimant may be granted legal ownership of the property.

Removal of Lienholders

A lien is a legal claim or right against property that must be paid off before selling. The lien could be due to unpaid taxes, an unpaid contractor, or a court judgment. The owner must clear these liens so the new owner doesn’t inadvertently inherit them.

However, there may be instances where a lienholder’s claim is unjustified or incorrect. For example, a contractor may have filed a mechanic’s lien for work that was not completed or was unsatisfactory. In such cases, the property owner can initiate a quiet title action to remove the lienholder’s claim. This process ensures property owners can sell or refinish their property without encumbrances.

Defective Titles

A defective title refers to a title with a significant error, omission, or other complications that can invalidate property ownership. These defects could include fraud transfers, errors in public records, forgery, or issues with the deed, such as improper wording or incorrect names.

A defective title can hinder a real estate transaction and lead to legal disputes over property ownership, highlighting the importance of quiet title actions.

Boundary Disputes

Boundary disputes arise when property owners disagree over where one property ends and another begins. This can occur due to unclear or incorrect deeds, physical changes to the land, or discrepancies between a property’s legal description and its actual use.

These disputes often require the examination of deeds, surveys, and property records. In some cases, a new survey may be necessary to determine boundaries accurately. A quiet title action can be used to resolve boundary disputes. By initiating this legal action, a property owner can ask the court to determine the correct boundaries of their property based on the evidence.

Contact Us for a Free Consultation

Richman Law Firm PLLC offers top-notch assistance in various issues related to real estate property disputes in New York City. From adverse possession to competing claims, our lawyers have vast experience in quiet title actions and similar legal matters.

Whether you need assistance resolving inheritance disputes, clarifying easement rights, or rectifying defective titles, our team can help. We work diligently to provide comprehensive legal advice tailored to each client’s interests. Contact us for a free consultation.

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    SCOTT B. RICHMAN, ESQ.

    Mr. Richman is the Managing Member and Founder of Richman Law Firm PLLC. In his role as Managing Member, Mr. Richman oversees the day-to-day operations of the firm and handles the litigation of the most complex legal matters across a vast array of practice areas and disciplines. ​

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