All posts tagged: Inheritance

Title Insurance is Champion of Ownership Rights!!

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In the never-ending battle for truth, justice, and clean title to real estate, Title Insurance is the champion of your ownership rights!  From easements to inheritance, no claim is too small or too large for an Owner’s Title Insurance Policy—your Title Insurance company is there to fight for you!!

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Keepin’ It Real

Title Insurance puts the real in real estate.  Should you have a claim against your deed, Title Insurance will meet the challenge to your ownership, providing the legal fees and the attorney to do battle in court if necessary.  (Even if your court battle loses, you still get the policy amount.)

When you obtain property, don’t walk—fly to make sure you have the proper coverage to fully insure your real estate title!!  It’s a one-time fee, normally paid at closing (but can be acquired at any time), and costs a lot less than hiring an attorney on your own.

Furthermore, Title Insurance is also a proactive measure as well as a defensive strategy.  The cost includes a title search to address any questions in the chain of title that appear in public records.  Once that’s done and any issues dealt with, then the policy insures against any questions that may arise in the future, but aren’t necessarily revealed in public records.

One good deed deserves another!

And later when you convey your property to a new owner, your Title Insurance policy continues to protect you from possible challenges for which a new owner could hold you liable.

Title Insurance – It’s good for now, it’s good for later, it’s good for what happened in the past, and it’s good for you!!

Stephen CollinsTitle Insurance is Champion of Ownership Rights!!
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A Deed Among Family?

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Who needs a deed among family members?  The family members do!!  Good deeds support good relations among kin, especially when inheritance gets involved.

When property changes hands from branch to branch on the family tree, keep the paperwork in order and maintain title insurance so that ownership rights can be properly recognized and defended should a dispute arise.  Don’t take shortcuts just because it’s family—don’t take shortcuts because it IS family!!

A major source of title challenges is from family transactions in real estate.

Even if the old homestead has been in the family for fifty years, property disputes can happen at any time.  Family disputes tend to be the biggest and most emotional.  When there’s a lot of emotion, there’s no rational—and it’s costly!  Want to help an attorney pay off his college loan, pay for litigation on a family dispute.  When somebody says “I’m fighting this for the principal of the matter,” they usually mean:  “For all the principal in your bank account!”

It’s expensive to be totally right!!  Have you hired a lawyer lately?  Remember, if a person—family member or otherwise—files a claim against your property, YOU have to pay for the legal defense of your real estate rights.  Title insurance covers those court costs and provides the legal representation.

Whether Uncle Elmer thought your daddy left the place to him, or Cousin Jesse claims your septic tank is on her side next door, a title insurance policy provides the financial and legal means to assert your ownership rights.

As of March 2011, a lot of companies started issuing the new and improved title insurance forms which allowed for those who inherit property to also inherit the title insurance.  But any policy issued without the updated forms is not assumable to heirs; therefore, even though granddaddy had coverage, it doesn’t mean you do.

Don’t know if your inherited property came with title insurance?  Land Title of America, Inc. will be glad to check—it’s a free service—just stop by our office located on U.S. Highway 1 South in St. Augustine (in the Lewis Point Plaza) or give us a call:

Land Title of America, Inc.

2495 U.S. Highway 1 South

St. Augustine, Florida

(904) 797-9600

 

 

 

Stephen CollinsA Deed Among Family?
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Parable of the Lost Title

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There was a man who had two sons, and the younger son said to the father, “Father, give me my share of property that falls to me,” and so the father divided his wealth between his two sons, including the title to his land. The younger son then gathered all that he had and took off to a far away country where he squandered his wealth.

When the younger son had spent everything, he found himself among the swine, wishing he could partake of their food, but no one would give him anything. Finally he said to himself, “How many of my father’s servants have bread enough, and yet I perish with hunger! I will go to my father and I will say to him, ‘Father, I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me as one of your hired servants.’”

And so the younger of the two sons arose and returned to the land of his father. But while he was yet at a great distance, his father passed away. The older brother, not being able to locate his younger brother, sold the entirety of the property. So when the younger brother arrived—possibly expecting a ring on his finger and a fatted calf for lunch—he found instead a new homeowner on what was once his father’s land, a portion of which he was to inherit.

This kind of thing can happen. Despite that the new homeowner didn’t know anything about the younger son, this kid could claim a right to the land. If the new homeowner didn’t buy title insurance, then he’s going to have to pay for that legal battle himself to defend his ownership. Title insurance covers the legal cost from unseen risk of previous ownership.

Stephen CollinsParable of the Lost Title
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Property Title Claims – How Does This Happen?

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When it comes to inheritance, some family reunions are more welcome than others. There was a situation of husband and wife. Second marriages for both of them, and they both had two children from previous marriages. The husband and wife wrote a will to include their combined four children. Then the husband died. Next the widow wrote a new will, which included only her two children from a previous marriage. Then she committed suicide. Regrettably, this is a true story.

The probate was clean and done when the husband’s two children showed up. They claimed the widow had written the second will under duress and they wanted their part of the inheritance from their father. Despite probate, a person who has an interest in a property has 30 years to stake that claim. It’s not just that there is a hidden risk—the risk is lingering.

A title search can’t catch hidden risk, but title insurance helps the legal defense of ownership against property title claims. A title insurance policy is not something you want to have to use, but if you need it, the title company who issued the policy will pay all your litigation costs.

Stephen CollinsProperty Title Claims – How Does This Happen?
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