HOW TITLE INSURANCE PROTECTS YOUR OWNERSHIP
Real estate has such great value and is so basic a form of wealth that may special laws have been enacted for its protection - laws so strict and far reaching that real estate is more strongly safeguarded than any other form or property.
As a result, the owner of land has exceedingly strong rights...and so do the family and heirs of the owner.
But others may have "rights" in the property, as well. There are mortgages and leasehold rights...liens to due to unpaid taxes...lien claims to those whom the owner owes money...mining, oil or air rights...and many others. Anyone who has such a claim is, in a limited way, a part-owner. He or she cannot ordinarily be deprived of their interest except by having the claim settled or released. The property may be sold - even without their knowledge - but the claim is still good until satisfied. As a new owner you may know nothing about these risks, but you are still vulnerable to such claims on your property. That's why you need an insurance policy from Cherokee Title Co.
DOESN'T YOUR DEED TAKE CARE OF GIVING YOU CLEAR TITLE?
Not at all. A deed is merely an instrument whereby a seller transfers his or her right of ownership, whatever that may be, to you. It is not proof that the person described as the seller is actually the owner. It does not do away with claims or rights others may have in the property. From the deed, you cannot determine what rights, liens or claims may be outstanding against your title.
The following questions must be answered before your title can be secured by an insurance policy from Cherokee Title Co.
IS THE RECORD OF OWNERSHIP OF THE LAND COMPLETE FROM THE FIRST OWNER DOWN TO DATE?
You will probably buy property that has had a number of different owners over the years. The continuous record of all those transactions is called the "chain of title." And like any other chain, it is no stronger than its weakest link. Anything wrong with the title of any of the previous owners may very well affect your title, too.
ARE THERE ANY LAWSUITS OR CLAIMS RECORDED AGAINST THE PROPERTY ITSELF?
If the former owner had a new sink installed and failed to pay the bill, the plumber may file a Mechanic's Lien claim. This stands as a claim on the property for which you, as the new owner, may have to pay in order to clear your title. Similarly, there may be suits pending affecting the former owner, foreclosures or bankruptcy actions, or any number of claims or legal involvements which may definitely cloud the title until they are properly settled or removed.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE HIDDEN RISKS?
Click here to see some of the most serious risks which are not revealed by the records or by an examination of the abstract buy covered by a Cherokee Title insurance policy.
IS THERE ANYWAY TO BE PROTECTED AGAINST RISKS?
Yes, with a Cherokee Title insurance policy. Under the terms of a Cherokee Title insurance policy, you are protected against risks and insured against loss. If your title as insured is ever attacked, Cherokee Title stands ready to defend it in two ways.
It is necessary to enter a legal defense of your rights under the policy in any suit or proceeding adversely affecting the title as insured, as an agent of Chicago Title Insurance Company, Cherokee Title employs legal counsel to take such action for you...completely at no cost to you.
If a loss is sustained, you are protected up to the full amount of your policy, which usually is equal to the full purchase price you paid for the property.
Used with permission of Chicago Title Insurance Company