The home you own and the property that it’s on have passed through numerous hands throughout the years — and there are a few times where the deed wasn’t properly recorded. That’s left a cloud hanging over the title and a few ambiguous possibilities regarding actual ownership.

Could a quiet title action help? Quiet title actions are a kind of civil lawsuit. They’re filed solely to settle any issues about the true ownership and rights to a piece of property. When successful, they remove other claims that may potentially exist to that property and “quiet” any adverse claims.

Quiet title actions may be needed when:

  • There is an unresolved (but satisfied) lien on the property and there doesn’t seem to be any other way to remove it because the lienholder is deceased or missing
  • There are questions about the boundaries, any easements or other encumbrances
  • The property has been unoccupied for a long period and there’s worry that someone may have established adverse possession rights over the land
  • The deed was recorded improperly and the current owner wants to correct the error
  • The property was inherited or obtained through an estate sale and the prior owner’s name needs to be removed from the deed

Quiet title actions are generally not adversarial processes — but that doesn’t mean that you should try to handle the issue on your own. The other parties are notified and given an opportunity to respond before the issue is settled. Sometimes, the response can come as a surprise — especially if the respondent seeks to eject the possessor from the property.

If you’re interested in learning more about quiet title actions in Pennsylvania, find out how an experienced real estate attorney can assist you.