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Deed Preparation (Grant Deeds, Quit Claim, Inter-spousal Deed Transfer, Deed Correction)
Although it may seem simple to transfer title of a property to another person or entity, there are specific types that should be used when doing so. Here they are:
Often used for residential real estate sales, a Warranty Deed acts as a guarantee to the buyer that the seller has the right to sell the property, and that the property is free of debt or other liens. The seller must defend the title against any and all other claims and compensate the buyer for any unsettled debts or problems.
Special Warranty Deed
Differing from a Warranty Deed, the seller’s guarantee does not cover the property’s entire history. Generally, the seller only guarantees against problems or claims created during the seller’s ownership of the property. A Special Warranty Deed is often used in commercial property transactions or residential real estate sales.
Most often used by family members, divorcing spouses, and people well-acquainted with each other, a Quitclaim Deed allows one party to transfer property rights and claims to another party. Usually there is no monetary exchange. The extent and authority of the grantor’s interest or claim to the property is unspecified, and the grantee is not provided with a guarantee. An Inter-Spousal Deed Transfer is a type of Quitclaim Deed that transfers ownership of a married couple to a spouse’s sole and separate property.
A Grant Deed transfers interest in a property from the seller to the buyer in exchange for an agreed-upon price. While the Grant Deed guarantees that the seller owns the property and is legally able to sell it free of debt, it does not provide a guarantee against defects of title (unlike the Special and General Warranty Deed). This type of deed is commonly used for residential real estate sales.
Small Claims Court
California Small Claims Court addresses civil cases quickly and inexpensively; a party can asking up to $10,000 in awards.
The Plaintiff (one who sues) will file the claim and will pay a filing fee of $75 if the claim is for more than $5,000 but less than or equal to $10,000. The Defendant (answering party) can be served by the clerk of the court (for an additional fee) or by a third party or process server.
A hearing will be set for both parties to appear and provide their side. There are no attorneys, no juries and no rules of evidence in small claims court, and you do not need to be a U.S. Citizen to file or defend your case.
If both parties appear at the hearing, the judge will either enter a ruling on the spot, or send it in the mail shortly thereafter.
If only one party appears, a default judgment may be entered against the party that does not appear at the hearing.
A losing Plaintiff will not be allowed to appeal the decision unless defendant has filed a Defendant’s claim in response to the claim; however, a losing defendant will be allowed to appeal the decision within 30 days of the mailing of the judgment.
An appeal, or a new trial will be in the civil division of superior court (not small claims) and each party will be allowed to have an attorney representing them.
OC Legal Service’s staff provides flexible Notary services to all clients, whether personal or business professionals in the legal, financial and real estate industry.
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