In the Minneapolis area a little less than half of the property is Torrens property. In out-state Minnesota, it’s a lot less. But how does property become Torrens property? That’s our topic for this article.
Problems with the Property
Usually, people decide to register their property as Torrens when there’s some type of a problem with the property. It could be:
- A boundary line issue
- Uncertain ownership issues
- Or simplify a complicated title history to provide for easier conveyances in the future
In order to resolve title problems you have a couple of options. You can bring a quiet title action to attempt to remedy the problem that exists with the property. The problem with that route is that it’s not necessarily a permanent solution to the title problem. If you decide you want to register your property as Torrens that could be a one-time fix. In order register the property as Torrens, a court action is required. We would strongly recommend hiring an attorney if you wish to convert your property to Torrens.
The Torrens System in Minnesota
The Torrens system in Minnesota is administered by the court system. Judges or their agents make decisions on issues involving Torrens property. Most often, judges appoint people called Examiners of Title as their deputies to administer this program. There are also officials called Registrars of Titles who receive the documents, determine their acceptability for recording, and record them against the Certificate of Title. The Examiner of Titles would be the contact party to help determine what you would need to register your property as Torrens, including perhaps:
- A survey
- A complete Abstract of Title
Urban vs. Rural
Depending on the Minnesota County, there can be different requirements to register a property as Torrens. In Hennepin and Ramsey counties there are full time staffs of these officials (Examiners of Title and Registrars). In outstate Minnesota there are fewer county officials, often part time. Sometimes counties will hire a private law firm or attorney to assist. That may delay the process of registering property. Because you have this patchwork of different people in each county – you’ll encounter different requirements throughout the Torrens proceedings.