Establishing Property Ownership by Possession

Most people come to own real estate the old fashion way: They buy the property from the owner. In exchange, they usually receive a deed conveying title to the property. But, a conveyance is not the only way to acquire real property. People also come to own real property by possessing the property for a…

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Establishing a Boundary by Practical Location

Practical location is a legal doctrine that can be used to establish a new location of a property boundary. The doctrine may be used to establish a boundary line where none can be located or agreed upon. More commonly, however, the doctrine is used to change a boundary line from what is reflected on a…

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Is There A Judicial Preference For “Magic Words” Over Common Meaning?

Both the United States and Minnesota Supreme Courts have, in recent decisions, surprised the legal community by requiring a special incantation of magic words when more general verbiage (or silence) should have sufficed. SCOTUS deemed silence itself insufficient to invoke the 5th amendment right and instead required an incantation of the right to remain silent. In Marine Credit Union…

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Court Warns Title Insurance Companies: Pay Up Or Else

Update (December 17, 2012): In Mattson Ridge v. Clear Rock Title, the Minnesota Supreme Court declined to hold a title insurer liable for damages in excess of policy limits when it wrongfully denied coverage. The Court did, however, stick the title insurer with a whopping bill: One over 100 times greater than it would have been…

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