If someone disputes your ownership, your right to use your land or claims that you are not the only owner of your property and you cannot sell or mortgage it without their consent, the first step is to learn why the claim is being made.
Your lawyer should carefully read your deed and study the history of your ownership. This is critical if you acquired ownership or the right to use the property in some other way than by deed (such as by purchasing a tax sale certificate from a town for back taxes, inheriting from someone who has died or by “adverse possession.”) Adverse possession means simply occupying or using the property for more than twenty years without interruption. Often, a title or other public records search is necessary to help understand the facts and then to apply the law.
Sometimes, the problem can be solved quickly by agreement. Other times, it is necessary to get a Court to decide ownership and rights in the land, buildings and home. The Court can recommend a neutral mediator to see if an agreement can be reached before the case must be decided by the Court. Our law firm has helped many clients work through these challenges.