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Real property

quiet title action

A quiet title action—also known as a trespass to try title action—is a lawsuit against a party who claims an interest in a piece of real property (land). In a quiet title action, the plaintiff seeks to establish the plaintiff’s title (ownership interest) in the land by forcing the adverse claimant (the defendant) to establish or prove an interest in the land or be forever estopped (precluded) from asserting an interest in the land.

The resolution of such a lawsuit is designed to settle or quiet a disputed claim to title or ownership of the land.

Laws regarding quiet title actions may vary from state to state and may be located in a state’s statutes or in its court opinions (common law or case law). The terms used for such a claim may also vary and in some states there may be a distinction between a quiet title claim and a trespass to try title claim—or a quiet title claim may be treated as an informal reference to a trespass to try title claim.

In Texas, a quiet title action, also known as a 'trespass to try title' action, is a legal proceeding used to resolve disputes over the ownership of real property. This type of lawsuit is filed by an individual or entity (the plaintiff) who seeks to establish clear title to a property by challenging any claims made by others (the defendants). The goal is to 'quiet' any challenges or claims to the title, thereby providing a clear and undisputed ownership record. Texas law requires the plaintiff to prove their ownership of the property in question with clear and convincing evidence. This may involve presenting deeds, wills, or other legal documents that establish the history of ownership. If successful, the court will issue a judgment that confirms the plaintiff's title to the property and eliminates any adverse claims. The Texas Property Code and relevant case law govern the procedures and requirements for bringing a quiet title action in the state. It's important to note that quiet title actions in Texas can be complex and may involve various legal issues, so it is advisable to consult with an attorney experienced in real estate law to navigate the process.

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