How Do I Transfer My Grandfather’s Land Title Into My Name?

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My uncle left me a house, and it is in his name but the land that the house is on is in my grandfather’s name. My grandfather passed away years ago, but my uncle has payed the taxes for years. Will I encounter any problems because of this and if so what should I do to make sure that I don’t?

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

First, you need to figure out who should have inherited the land from your grandfather. You (or the person or people who should inherit) will then probably need to pass the land through probate to transfer title.

Depending on how many years your uncle paid the taxes, you may be able to make an argument for “adverse possession” of the property – essentially claiming that the land became his by virtue of his acting like the owner and paying the taxes for long enough. However, that would involve a lawsuit to confirm the ownership, and then the next question becomes: if he did own the property, who inherited it from him? Overall, probating your grandfather’s estate is likely to be the cheaper
option.

But to answer your specific quesiton, yes, there are lots of problems that can arise from not knowing who owns the property that your house is sitting on. Starting with, why are you even allowed to have a house there? Do you owe them rent? Lots of things to resolve, and it may take some time to disentangle, but the risks of doing nothing are quite real.



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Author: House Attorney