If you are buying or selling real property in the state of California, you will at some point encounter the concept of title insurance. In fact, real estate brokers typically use standardized purchase and deposit forms, which include express provisions for the issuance of title insurance as a condition of purchase. But what is this so-called title insurance? What is it used for? Is it mandatory for me to get title insurance?
Usually when you think of insurance, like home insurance or car insurance, you are thinking about a policy which will protect you from some harm which may happen in the future — a car accident or house fire, for example. These policies are usually valid for a year, unless you pay a renewal fee.
Title insurance is somewhat different from car and home insurance. For one thing, title insurance will protect the buyer for as long as the buyer owns the property and often times even after they sell to transfer it. Another difference is that title insurance does not promise to protect you from some future harm that may occur. Rather, title insurance is a promise that the title to the property is clear (subject to certain identified exceptions in the title report) on the date of purchase, and if it is not, the insurer will indemnify the buyer from any resulting loss. It is important to remember, though, that a title insurance policy does not insure the value of the property, but only the condition of its legal title.
Our attorneys have a great deal of experience with issues related to title insurance and the purchase and sale of real property. To schedule a consultation with an attorney at Schorr Law, please do not hesitate to contact us