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Gone Fishing

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You can’t hang a “No Fishing” sign over your home ownership, but you can put up a defense with title insurance.

Quit Claim Deeds can be a conduit of fraud. They are a way to clean up real estate title, but not much use beyond that, AND Quit Claim Deeds come with NO WARRANTIES. If you take ownership by a Quit Claim Deed, the Seller did not promise they owned it. They just gave you all that they had “if any.”  That means that ABC Company could Quit Claim Deed your home to you when ABC Company didn’t have clear title of ownership to do that. Oops on you.

If it looks like a fraud, if it walks like a fraud, if it quacks like a fraud, it probably is a fraud, BUT a judge can’t call it a fraud unless you defend your ownership in a court of law. Regardless of how fraudulent or illegitimate the transfer of ownership is to you, you are liable to defend your ownership should a challenge arise. And that’s dang expensive!

However, if you have an owner’s title insurance policy, then the title insurance company that issued you that policy will cover the litigation cost to defend your ownership. You can’t stop a fraud from fishing on your property, but with title insurance, you don’t leave your personal finances on the hook.

Losing an entire house from a case of fraud is pretty extreme. Most home ownership claims arrive on a smaller scale like Your well is three feet on my property. Regardless of the scale, court costs are dang expensive—also regardless of scale, an owner’s title insurance policy will cover that court cost.

Stephen CollinsGone Fishing

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