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Quiet title claims and property ownership in Michigan

Despite what many people think, claims on real estate properties are not always clear. There may be several people who have interest in owning a piece of land outright and there are cases where people seek to have partial ownership of that land. For those seeking to clarify their ownership of a real estate, a quiet title action may be the wisest decision.

What are quiet title claims?

In situations where there are several parties who may have ownership interests, it may not be initially obvious who has the greatest claim to the property. In these types of circumstances, the property has what is known as a "clouded" title. This is when a quiet title claim should be made.

A quiet title claim is a legal action whereby a party legally establishes their dominant claim to a piece of property. By doing so, they quiet all potential challenges to their ownership. To do this, they must prove to a judge that they have a superior interest in the property. If all goes well, the quiet title claim will end with a clear title in their name.

When should a quiet title claim be made?

There are many situations in which a quiet title claim is an appropriate action. One of the more common circumstances is one in which a party will want to utilize the property in some form or another, e.g. building structures on the property, taking advantage of available natural resources, etc. However, it can be difficult to accomplish these goals unless the party has sole ownership of the land.

To establish sole ownership, the party must file suit against all other parties who have a potential ownership claim on the property. During this process, the plaintiff must prove to the judge that they have the greatest claim to the property and should therefore be given ownership of it. Once the judge makes their decision, the party legally owns the property.

Because of the potential for many individuals to be involved, these cases can become very complex. The state of Michigan has online resources for those who are interested in the actual legal requirements. However, if you are planning to file a quiet title claim or are involved with one, it is suggested that you seek out and obtain the services of a trained and experienced legal professional. They will be able to work with you to ensure the best possible outcome.

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