New York Real Estate: What is a Quiet Title Action?

by | Apr 1, 2021 | New York Real Estate, Real Estate Law

When selling or refinancing property in New York you sometimes need what’s called a “quiet title action”.  

Without a cleared title, banks will not loan you money to refinance or purchase real estate in New York.  

What is a Quiet Title Action?

So, what is a quiet title action? 

Simply put, a quiet title action is a legal action that is intended to clarify ownership of a given property.  

Title actions are typically used in cases where the title or ownership of a property is in question.  

As the beneficiary of a quiet title action, you will be protected by any future attempts by a third party to acquire or claim the property.  

Cases where a title action would be needed could include mortgage-lender disputes, the death of a title owner, cases of adverse possession, and long periods of time where a property was completely unoccupied. 

A New York real estate attorney will help you through the process of a quiet title action, ensuring your property is safe and that the ownership of it is not only clarified but protected in the future. 

When to File a Quiet Title Action

The following situation may require that you file a quiet title action:  

  • Easement disputes 
  • After purchasing a foreclosure to ensure there are no claims or issues with the title. 
  • Purchasing a property where the owner is deceased to make sure that relatives do not later seek to claim it.  
  • Any allegations of property fraud or improper sale of property. 
  • When terminating a relationship with someone who co-owned the property, such as a business partner.  
  • Anytime you have concerns about third-party real estate claims.  

How to File a Quiet Title Action 

If for one of the above reasons you need to file for a quiet title action, your real estate attorney can do so by filing a lis pendis, officially serving summons, and complaint to other potential people who have a potential claim or interest on the property.  

During the quiet title action, anyone who laid a claim on the property will have a chance to attend the court hearing and lay their own claim on the property. If they fail to do so, the court will issue that the property has a clear title. If they have a valid claim, the judge will determine who has a fair claim and issue the property’s title accordingly.  

In New York, once you have successfully filed a quiet title action, the court will suspend the rights of any future claims on the property in question.  

New York Real Estate Attorney

Annie Justice Piccinnini Law Senior Editor

Annie Justice
Senior Editor
Piccinnini Law
(516) 500-2110