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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 116717
Experience:  Licensed attorney practicing landlord-tenant, land use and other real estate law and litigation.
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I recently learned that a property that has been in our

Customer Question

I recently learned that a property that has been in our family in Virginia may be going to tax auction - I am working with county officials to get the back taxes paid however the deed was never transferred - The listed owner is a former slave. (A great, great, great aunt. Her grandson was the last direct descendent who lived their before my uncle his cousin took over the property. Neither of these men have children. Up to this point various family members had simply helped who ever lived in the house with the payments. Now no one seems to be interested in the property and I would like to get a new deed so that I can take out a mortgage to pay the back takes which are now at $30,000 - the property tax value is $250,000 - property in the area no sells for $500,000 or more -I do not wish to see this property go to strangers - is there anything that can be done?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

If the deed has never been changed, this is a complicated matter because it would require filing a Petition to Quiet Title in the court and you are going to have to trace the heirs of the owners listed on the deed up to the present time. This means you will need a local attorney to get the deed cleared. In the meantime you can pay the taxes to prevent the sale, but you must clear up the ownership and get the deed put into the names of the rightful owners.

You can stop this, but again, you need an attorney and have to pay the tax to stop the auction and you must file a petition to quiet title in the court as well.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can I file myself or do I have to hire a lawyer
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your reply.

For something as you described you will need a local real estate lawyer, because this is going to be fairly complex to untangle the ownership if the names on the deed go back as far as you say.

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