A title defect is anything that can cause a title to be considered invalid or defective in some way. Some examples are:
• Invalid documents due to forgery, fraud, undue influence, duress, incompetency, incapacity, or impersonation.
• Failure of any person or entity to have authorized a transfer or conveyance.
• A document affecting title that is not properly executed, signed, witnessed, notarized, or delivered.
• Undisclosed or unrecorded easements not otherwise apparent on your land.
• No right of access to and from the land.
• A document executed under a falsified, expired, or otherwise invalid power of attorney.
• A document not properly filed, recorded, or indexed in the public records.
• Ownership claims by undisclosed or missing heirs.
• Defect arising from an improper prior foreclosure.
• Undisclosed restrictive covenants affecting your property.
Lien issues can also cause title defects. Some examples of lien issues are:
• Any statutory or constitutional contractor’s, mechanic’s, or materialman’s lien for labor or materials that began on or before the policy date. Talk to an attorney about your rights.
• Lien for labor or materials furnished by a contractor without your consent.
• A previous owner failed to pay
o a mortgage or deed of trust
o a judgment, tax, or special assessment
o a charge by a homeowners or condominium association.
• Other liens or claims that may exist against your title that are not listed in the policy.