Legal Question in Real Estate Law in California

I quit claimed my property to my ex husband in our divorce. he never filed it, and yet he sold the property to someone else and also quit claimed it to him but the quit claim had the wrong parcel number on it so he couldn't file it either. The property is still in my name and I had to pay property taxes to avoid auction by la county. the "sale" took place in 2017. I just paid the taxes in 2022 is this property legally mine?


Asked on 6/27/22, 1:52 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Timothy McCormick Haapala, Thompson & Abern, LLP

No, it is not legally yours. Signing and delivering the quitclaim deed made the property your husband's sole property, even if the public record didn't reflect it. What I'm not understanding is why in the world you paid the taxes rather than let it get auctioned off. If you quitclaimed it you no longer owned it, even if the quitclaim was never recorded in the public records. You should have just let it go. Now you remain the record owner of the property which gives you apparent liability for it. If someone gets injured on it, for example, they'll look to you and you'll have to prove you quitclaimed it away. Not a good position to be in. So now you need to clean this up to avoid being responsible for the property. My suggestion is that you contact the buyer and quitclaim directly to them and make sure it gets properly recorded.

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Answered on 6/28/22, 8:41 am


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