Every property has a history—and that history may not be immediately apparent. Title insurance helps protect you from some of the costs associated with title issues that limit the transaction, but it’s not a perfect solution. The best defense is to be aware of potential issues that could arise and be proactive in addressing problems as they occur.
Common Title Issues Associated With Commercial Real Estate Transactions
When you’re buying real estate for commercial purposes, whether you’re starting a new business, expanding an existing company, or buying an investment property, these are the potential title issues you are most likely to encounter:
- Clerical or filing errors in public records
- Forged or fabricated documents
- Unknown liens from when prior owners didn’t pay all their bills
- Illegal deeds involving undocumented immigrants, minors, people judged to be of unsound mind, or people who claimed to be single but are in fact legally married
- Missing heirs who reappear to contest the will of a prior owner
- Boundary or survey disputes allowing another party to claim ownership of a portion of the property
- Unknown easements that prevent you from using the property as you had originally intended
- Undiscovered encumbrances that give another party, such as an individual, business, or government agency, a legal claim to all or part of the property
Title Insurance Isn’t a Foolproof Solution
Title insurance is typically required by lenders as a condition of purchasing a property. The title insurance company will conduct a review of the property’s title history before the sale is completed. However, the title review is done to protect the insurer’s interests. This means there may still be problems your company may be liable for as a buyer. For example, boundary disputes related to survey issues are commonly excluded from title insurance.
How Stone LLP Can Help
If your company is involved in a title dispute, contact Stone LLP today. Our skilled real estate trial attorneys can discuss the case and help you come to a solution that protects your financial interests and allows for your project to proceed in a timely fashion. We understand the pressure your business faces and will aggressively advocate for your interests.