Buying a home will likely be the biggest investment you make in your lifetime. So before you sign on the dotted line, you must be sure that the "title" of the property is free of any other claims.
Determining that your rights and interests to the property are clear is the business of a title insurance company.
You pay the title company a single premium which includes the cost of verifying clear title and covers you in case some fault is later discovered in the title.
The title company searches the title history of the property. The title insurance company can almost always identify any title problems and have these problems cleared-up prior to closing.
Real Estate law is extraordinarily complicated. Title companies make sure that all the T's are crossed and all the I's are dotted so you don't end up with a clouded title and legal problems. Your title insurance owner's policy will describe the property and outline any recorded limitations on your ownership. It will also cover what the title company is responsible for. Typically your title insurance will protect you in the following cases:
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