A document that gives complete ownership of land or property to the holder.
Absolute Title Details
An absolute title gives an indisputable right of ownership to the owner. It is also known as a perfect title because it comes with no encumbrances, liens, attachments, or judgments. The owner of an absolute title is free to sell their property whenever they choose.
Usually, when someone or an organization is looking for land, it is wise to do a title search. This process will reveal if the land or property you are interested in is really for sale and whether the person selling it has the full rights to do so. A seller with an absolute title makes the buying process smoother and simpler. This is because there are no unpaid taxes or parties with a claim to the property.
Example of an Absolute Title
To understand risk acceptance well, consider this example. A woman, Natalie, has inherited a 100-acre farm from her parents. She is to share this farm with her brother. Because of lifestyle differences, the brother chooses to sell his portion of the land and move to a different country. Natalie decides to buy this portion and pay off any remaining mortgage and taxes. She then applies for the complete rights of ownership to the farm. Her brother writes a letter of no contest. A judge approves Natalie's claim and hands her a new title of ownership—an absolute title.
Significance of an Absolute Title
An absolute title is the king of all real estate titles. This is because it gives the complete right of ownership to the holder. No one can challenge an absolute title. No one can make claims against the property in terms of mortgage fees, taxes, or even co-ownership. With none of these encumbrances surrounding the title, an absolute title is thus the perfect property ownership title.
Another advantage of an absolute title is that no one can contest the property. The holder of the absolute title can sell the property or land at their discretion, either in parts or entirely, transferring the absolute title to another party. They are also free to lease it or rent it for whatever purposes. This makes the transactions much simpler since there are fewer visits to government offices and fewer signatures needed.
Absolute Title vs. Possessory Title
A possessory title is a title granted to a property/landowner when they cannot provide documentary evidence of their title to the land. Usually, this requires a long legal process that involves a lot of visits to the local and sometimes national land offices to prove missing titles.
A possessory title is granted if the landowner loses the original title in a fire, natural disaster, or simply due to the passing of time. You can also apply for a possessory title if you have claimed the title by adverse possession.
There are two key differences between an absolute title and a possessory title that make the absolute title more superior:
- Someone can challenge a possessory title very easily. Anyone who claims to have a better title to the property or land or even who claims to have the ‘original title’ can challenge a possessory title. This ties the land in a long and drawn legal battle that rarely ends well.
- The property or land may be subject to third-party rights, liens, and attachments. This means that anyone buying it would not know about these encumbrances until the buying process begins. It becomes a costly process to lift the limitations and finally get a more concrete title.
An absolute title is a perfect class title. In land and property ownership, having an absolute title gives one true freedom.