We entered into quick close all cash escrow for $700k home in Orange County, California. The preliminary title report showed a $150k lien on home from 2002. I did research and found it was sold in 2002 (date on lien). House was then sold in 2005 and again in 2013. Fast forward to 2018, the title company gives us a prelim tile report with lien from 2002 on it, but current owners say they were never notified of lien. After almost a full day of research, title company rep called me back and told me that they are willing to take the risk and take it off of report. I asked what happens when it shows up again when I go to sell the home, she said that the new title company will contact them and they will tell them that they should take it off the report (say what?). My real estate agent seemed to think this was no big deal and normal for all kinds of "nonvalid" and "old" things to show up on report. He actually even mentioned that most don't look at the title report at all!
Is this a usual occurance to make an old lien "disappear"? Is it because the lien is so old and no longer collectible? I think most likely it was misfiled paperwork, but we decided not to purchase...didn't want to hold up sellers. Also, since title company informed us of lien and then took it off with our knowledge, does that make us liable somehow, if we had to collect? Asking this question now, because I don't want to lose out on the next house by overthinking things.
This is an unreleased trust... URT.
Paid off but never released, these show up more often than you might think. Once it is confirmed that the balance is $0, there is nothing to foreclose and title insurers will insure over them (often with a letter of indemnity from the last insurer... but not always).