Someone has clouded my title
“Cloud on the title” also known as “title defect”, is generally caused by a claim, lien, or encumbrance impairing or blocking your rights as a real property owner.
Generally, “clouds” prevent property owners from selling, conveying, or transferring a marketable title. Another example of a “cloud” is a notice of pendency of action or “lis pendens”, which is a document that is recorded with the county which provides constructive notice of a pending court action affecting the title or possession of real property. If there is a dispute that deals with real property, this notice, which is also filed with the court, warns all potential acquirers or purchasers against any attempt to acquire a legal or equitable interest in the real property. This provisional remedy is a powerful weapon a plaintiff has when filing an action that affects title or possession of real property.
Frequently Asked Questions
A cloud on your title may lead to a reduction in value or marketability of your real property. Generally, potential buyers that discover a cloud through a title search will refuse to move forward with the purchase. Examples of clouding title include, but are not limited to:
- Lis Pendens, which gives notice of a pending legal action that may affect the real property;
- Mortgage and tax liens;
- Deed errors;
- Easements that are not properly recorded.
One legal remedy to remove a cloud on a title is to file a quiet title action. If there is a lis pendens, you can file a motion to expunge the lis pendens if the person who recorded it does not voluntarily remove it.
If you would like to learn more about filing a quiet title action in California, please contact experienced attorneys at Webb Law Group.
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