Certified Forensic Loan Auditors, LLC

 
  Upcoming Classes

Search CFLA's Article Archive:

On Your Mark, Get Set, Go: Court of Appeals Decision Creates Race to the Courthouse in Actions to Quiet Title Involving Municipalities

fosterswift.com | July 31, 2014

By Anne M. Seurynck

In a decision that could lead to increased litigation against municipalities involving claims for adverse possession and acquiescence, the Michigan Court of Appeals recently held that a property owner is not statutorily barred from bringing such actions against municipalities as long as the property owner is the first to file suit. In other words, if the property owner sues the municipality to quiet title, the property owner’s action may proceed. If the municipality sues the property owner to quiet title, the landowner is barred by statute from asserting its own claim(s) to the property.

In Waisanen v Superior Township, a property owner filed a quiet title action against Superior Township under theories of adverse possession and acquiescence. The municipality counter-claimed. Adverse possession is a legal doctrine that provides that a person in possession of land owned by someone else may acquire valid title to it, as long as certain requirements are met, and the adverse possessor is in possession for a sufficient period of time. Acquiescence is a similar doctrine related to the boundary lines of real property. The biggest distinction between the two doctrines is that in the case of adverse possession, the taking of the land must be “hostile” to the title owner’s interest, while in acquiescence cases neither party to the dispute intends to take property from the other, but there is a mutual mistake as to the location of the actual boundary line.

The dispute in Waisanen came to light after a survey conducted by the municipality in 2008 revealed that the property owner’s break wall and home addition, in place for over 25 years, encroached on a lake access road dedicated to public use. The trial court ruled in favor of the plaintiff on both the adverse possession and acquiescence claims, and quieted title in favor of the property owner. The township appealed.

On appeal, the defendant-municipality argued that MCL 600.5821(2) barred plaintiff’s claims. MCL 600.5821(2) provides that “Actions brought by any municipal corporations for the recovery of the possession of any public highway, street, alley, or any other public ground are not subject to the periods of limitations.”

In this case, the municipality did not bring the action against the property owner. Rather, it filed a counter-claim. In ruling for the plaintiff-property owner, the Court of Appeals found this fact – i.e., that the plaintiff filed suit first - dispositive. It stated that “MCL 600.5821(2) does not provide protection for a municipal corporation which has merely counterclaimed for possession in an existing action, rather than bringing an action of its own.”

The Court of Appeals acknowledged that its ruling could create a “race to the courthouse” scenario, with private property owners and municipalities each being incentivized to be the first to bring suit. But it further noted that it was up to the legislature “to fix such an arguably anomalous result.” In the meantime, municipalities should take stock of whether any private party is occupying or encroaching on public land and should consider filing an action to quiet title or risk losing the property.

 

Back to July 2014 Archive

CFLA was founded by the Nation's Leading Foreclosure Defense Attorneys back in 2007 to serve the Foreclosure Defense Industry and fight pervasive Bank Fraud. Since opening our virtual doors, CFLA has rapidly expanded to become the premier online legal destination for small businesses and consumers. But as the company continues to grow, we're careful to hold true to our original vision. For us, putting the law within reach of millions of people is more than just a novel idea—it's the founding principle, just ask Andrew P. Lehman, J.D.. With convenient locations in Houston and Los Angeles, you can contact Our National Account Specialist and General Manager / Member Damion W. Emholtz at 888-758-2352 for a free Mortgage Fraud Analysis or to obtain samples of work product, including cutting edge Bloomberg Securitization Audits, Litigation Support, Quiet Title Packages, and for more information about our Nationally Accredited and U.S. Department of Education Approved "Mortgage Securitization Analyst Training Certification" Classes (3 days) 24 hours for approved CLE & MCLE Credit (Now Available Online).

SEE BELOW- http://www.certifiedforensicloanauditors.com

Call us toll free at 888-758-2352

Bookmark and Share
spacer
Facebook Like us on Facebook
Twitter Follow us on Twitter
YouTube View our YouTube Videos
LinkedIn Connect to us on Linkedin
 
BBB Logo

 

spacer
Contact us or view our Sample Documents & Audits by completing the form below.

  • Reload
  • Should be Empty:


 

DVD Sets Only $99

 

FREE Mortgage Fraud Analysis

 

Order Cutting-Edge Services Now

 

Quiet Title Packages from Licensed Attorneys

 

Affiliate Services

 

CFLA Sponsored Attorney Links

 

Take-Home Education Package

 

ALB Law Firm

 

Advocate Legal

 

The True News Network

 

Sutton Law Firm, P.L.L.C.

 

Rubenstein Business Law

 

Atighechi Law Group

 

Scunziano & Associates

 

Get Certified to Perform Mortgage Securitization Audits

 

CFLA Training Academy

 

Expert Witness Services

 

Cutting Edge Expert Securitization Reports

 

CFLA Credit Cards

 

Breaking News

 

Letters to the Editor

 

CFLA Weekly Newsletters

 

Code of Ethics

 

Testimonials

 

Instructional Videos

 

Job Opportunities

 

License Opportunities

 

MARS Rule

 

Product Samples

 

Resource Links

 

Servicer Information

 

Foreclosure Laws

 

REST Report

 

Quiet Title Packages from Licensed Attorneys

 

Advertise on CFLA

 

Advertising Space: Mortgage Securitization, Quiet Title

 

Certified Forensic Loan Auditors, LLC
13101 West Washington Blvd.
Suite 444
Los Angeles, CA 90066

Phone: 832-932-3951
Toll Free: 888-758-CFLA (2352)
Mobile Users: CLICK TO CALL
info@certifiedforensicloanauditors.com

   
 
CFLA IS NOT A LAW FIRM AND DOES NOT PROVIDE ANY LEGAL ADVICE. CFLA DOES NOT OFFER FORECLOSURE CONSULTING OR FORECLOSURE RELIEF
SERVICES. CFLA DOES NOT OFFER OR ASSIST WITH ANY LOAN MODIFICATION SERVICE. CFLA ALWAYS RECOMMENDS THAT CLIENTS RETAIN COMPETENT COUNSEL IN THEIR RESPECTIVE JURISDICTION. CFLA HAS A FREE PROGRAM TO REFER CFLA CLIENTS TO LAW FIRMS IN NEARLY EVERY STATE AND CFLA
DOES NOT CHARGE OR OBTAIN REFERRALS FEES FOR THESE SERVICES. SERVICES NOT OFFERED TO RESIDENTS OF THE STATE OF NEVADA.

 
Home About Us Privacy Policy Terms of Service Disclaimer SERVICES Careers Contact Us
 
COPYRIGHT © 2007-2016 Certified Forensic Loan Auditors ™ All rights reserved