Concord Boundary Dispute Lawyers and Concord Title Attorneys

Concord Title & Boundary Dispute Lawyers, CA

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Title and Boundary Dispute Law in California

Finding out that property lines are improperly drawn and learning that you have been partially occupying your neighbor's land, or vice versa, can create some fairly serious legal issues.

Ideally, the neighbors could just ignore the situation, and go on as they had before, effectively agreeing to change the property lines to reflect their past use. This doesn't always happen, however. Additionally, such a course of action is not free of issues, and could eventually result in ownership of the land legally changing to reflect the past use, even if one of the neighbors opposes this.

Consequently, neighbors more frequently end up in some type of legal dispute over whether and to what extent the property lines should be enforced. Obviously, when the property lines are changed, one neighbor wins, and the other loses. It should come as no surprise, then, that legal fights are often the result.

While the boundary disputes discussed above occur fairly regularly, they aren't the only type of land dispute that can happen in Concord, California. There are also title disputes. These disagreements arise when it isn't clear who owns an entire parcel of land. There are many reasons why such confusion might arise, but a common one is failure to properly record a deed, or subsequent loss of a deed by the recording office. While typically innocent in origin, these disputes can also be the product of fraud. Sometimes, a landowner will sell his land to more than one person, with each buyer assuming that they are the only buyer. Having "sold" his land multiple times, the fraudster presumably flees the jurisdiction with his ill-gotten gains. This leaves the buyers to figure out who truly owns the land that each of them thought they had just bought. Obviously, whoever loses this dispute will typically have to absorb the loss of the land's purchase price, if the fraudulent seller cannot be found.

Possible Outcomes of Boundary and Title Disputes in Concord, California

One possible outcome of a boundary dispute is a court effectively re-drawing the boundaries to fit what the neighbors had perceived. This is most frequently done if the neighbors were aware for a long time of the "real" property lines, and didn't do anything about it. It also helps if the neighbor who is encroaching makes major improvements to the land, and enforcing the new property lines would place a major burden on him.

A court, for various possible reasons, might decide to give effect to the legally-recorded property lines, which would always change the neighbors' situation, with respect to how they use their land. For example, if the neighbor who is benefiting from the current situation (he is using land beyond the actual boundary of his property, thereby encroaching onto the land of another) knew about the discrepancy and took steps to actively hide this fact from the other neighbor, the court is very unlikely to do anything that rewards this behavior, even in the slightest. Accordingly, a court is likely to decide against the dishonest neighbor. Conversely, if the neighbor who would benefit from enforcing the property lines did nothing to make this happen for many years, a court will probably tell them that they had their chance, and basically consented to the current arrangement when they took no action to correct it.

With title disputes (as opposed to the boundary disputes discussed above), a Concord, California court has to determine who owns an entire parcel of land. There are some pretty complex legal issues involved here.

Without delving into the details too much, courts typically resolve title disputes by looking at who recorded the deed first, and whether or not that person had notice of any prior sales of the same land. To succeed in a dispute like this, a buyer will usually need to prove that they were the first to record their deed, and that they had no notice (or reason to know) of any prior conveyances of the same land.

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What Can A Concord, California Attorney Do?

As you might have gathered, it's not uncommon for the legal issues governing boundary and title disputes to get very complicated. Moreover, any dispute that can affect one's use or ownership of land has very high stakes (land isn't typically cheap, after all). Therefore, it shouldn't come as a surprise that hiring a competent Concord, California real estate lawyer to help in situations like this is always a good idea.

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Life in Concord

Concord, California is the largest city in Contra Costa County, California. It has a population of over 122,000 people, making it one of the largest suburbs in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

Concord was founded in 1869, and was originally named "Todos Santos," meaning "All Saints." Adjacent to Concord, California is Port Chicago - a major Navy supply depot. In 1944, it was the site of one of the biggest naval disasters to ever occur on the U.S. mainland. Sailors were loading munitions onto a large cargo ship. 

The munitions on the ship detonated, causing a massive explosion, killing 320 sailors and civilians - most of them African-American. This led to over 200 African-American sailors refusing to load munitions due to unsafe working conditions, resulting in the largest mutiny trial in U.S. Navy history, in which 50 men were convicted. Thurgood Marshall, a lawyer and future Supreme Court justice, sat in on most of the proceedings and claimed that they were prejudiced against the defendants. The men were sentenced to long prison terms, but were released after a few years. These events led to the Navy hastening its desegregation plans, and making efforts to improve working conditions.

Several lawyers from in and around Concord, California were likely involved in these proceedings.

If you live in Concord, California, and are in need of legal advice, the lawyers of Concord, California can help. A Concord, California attorney can probably assist you with virtually any legal issue you're likely to face.

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