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Irwin Law
Irwin Law, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 4691
Experience:  Lawyer- Broker 30+years - foreclosure, short sale, liens, title attorney.
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In 2001 I made $40k improvements to a property, original seller defaulted on his purchase

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In 2001 I made $40k improvements to a property, original seller defaulted on his purchase contract & gave me Quit Claim deed to property.

Seller knew of improvements & could not pay, but offered me property in exchange. I preferred $$.

The original seller didn't have the funds to pay for the improvements and in 2002 offered me the buildings which I declined. I filed contractor liens which eventually expired and continued to occupy the building.

As pro se I spent 2004-2009 in an Unjust Enrichment.  The seller's attorney was attorney, judge & court commissioner.  Eventually, it was determined that my original service was deficient forcing the case into an appeals process, which I didn't pursue.

I've occupied property since 7/2001, have paid 9 consecutive yrs prop taxes & have not been paid for improvements.

Now served with eviction. How do I file notice adverse possession or do I bring new adverse possession suit?

 

During 2001-2012 to protect my interest I
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Irwin Law replied 2 years ago.

If the eviction action is in a small claims court, those courts usually do not have jurisdiction over cases involving title to real estate. Therefore, what you can usually do is file an answer claiming that by reason of adverse possession, you are in fact the owner of the real estate. The eviction court, which lacks jurisdiction would then transfer the case to a higher Circuit or Superior court. There you would be able to file your claim of ownership by adverse possession, or counterclaims for money that is owed to you. I'd be remiss if I did not tell you that your claim is extremely technical and difficult to prove. You should seek the assistance of a good local attorney, especially since the owner has one.

 

I have answered your question. Please click on ACCEPT or SMILEY FACE so that I will be compensated. BONUSES for quick and helpful responses are very appreciated. If you wish clarification of the answer, please send me a "Reply". If you have additional questions, I would be happy to assist, but as a courtesy I respectfully XXXXX XXXXX you ACCEPT the answer to your first question before branching off into other new questions.
Also, this answer does not create an attorney client relationship and you are urged to consult a local attorney to verify the accuracy of this answer according to your state's laws and local customs and practice.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for your quick response. This is a tiny rural area, still looking for an attorney with any expertise within a 100 mile radius. I did the Unjust Enrichment pro se for the same reason.

I'll be accepting your answer upon clarification regarding regarding whether I would be filing a new adverse possession suit or trying to include those facts in my answer to her Motion For Restitution, without actually filing a new case?

The eviction is in superior court because the atty/judge/court commissioner's atty daughter is now trying to, 10 years & 10 months later, massage this into a landlord tenant relationship with the original seller by asking for retroactive "rent" ..at no time has the seller ever requested rent or to form a landlord tenant relationship. She has been too busy dodging my bullets.

According to Washing RCW's she could have easily interrupted the adverse possession by paying the property taxes for even 1 year. I repeatedly advised her, in writing, of the tax delinquencies and believe she abandoned the property by lack of her action or rebutal to my assertion that she had abandoned her interest.


Expert:  Irwin Law replied 2 years ago.

Hello again: Please keep in mind that I practice law halfway across the U.S. from you.

That said, I don't know what judgments have already been entered in other cases you mention which might constitute res judicata. In other words, it's already been decided and its all done, legally speaking. If you are now being sued in a Superior Court for possession of property which you now claim to own by way of adverse possession. You would IMO probably want to file both an answer denying the basic allegations of the complaint. Then you would file several counts of counterclaim for; a) Quiet Title against the Plaintiff based on AP; b) quantum meruit, i.e. reasonable value of services rendered (statue of limitations has expired no doubt, but it can still probably be used for counterclaim purposes); c) unjust enrichment.

Of course the Big Kahuna is AP and every state's laws vary considerably. They are fact sensitive, rarely tried and very difficult to win because courts are reluctant to take a person's property away from them. I cannot make any predictions for you based on the facts that you have provided. You might have to go a few counties away to find an attorney, but I think that any good litigator can do it since the law is pretty clear and it's a matter of fact presentation. Plus, most cases like this are going to be settled somewhere along the way. Especially if the facts can cut either way.

These sites present some information that you might find helpful in this area:

 

http://www.boundarydisputelaw.com/legal-news/was-adverse-possession-bill-the-state-of-our-dis-union-address

 

http://www.gritcitylaw.com/2011/06/new-adverse-possession-law-in.html

 

http://www.lanepowell.com/14151/washington-adverse-possession-law-changed-to-provide-for-attorneys-fees-and-payment-of-taxes

 

I have answered your question. Please click on ACCEPT or the SMILEY FACE so that I will be compensated. BONUSES for quick and helpful responses are very appreciated. If you wish clarification of the answer, please send me a "Reply". If you have additional questions, I would be happy to assist, but as a courtesy I respectfully XXXXX XXXXX you ACCEPT the answer to your first question before branching off into other new questions.
Also, this answer does not create an attorney client relationship and you are urged to consult a local attorney to verify the accuracy of this answer according to your state's laws and local customs and practice.

Irwin Law, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 4691
Experience: Lawyer- Broker 30+years - foreclosure, short sale, liens, title attorney.
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