Can I sue my realtor/seller or title company for not disclosing a property line/boundary issue when I bought my house?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I sue my realtor/seller or title company for not disclosing a property line/boundary issue when I bought my house?

I bought my house 8 years ago. The realtor/seller/title company did not disclose anything wrong with the property or issue with boundary. Then, 8 years later, we get a letter from the city to correct our fence that is apparently over our property line into the empty lot next to us. We try to appeal but got an email a day later from the city saying the letter was given in an error and that our case is more of


Asked on November 28, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Minnesota


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You can't sue the realtor: the realtor is not obligated to do research to determine if there are any issues but can rely on what they are told by the seller.
In theory, IF the seller knew of the issue and failed to disclose it, he could be liable--but only if he knew: there is no liability if the seller was innocent of knowledge of the problem. However, in your state (MN), the "statute of limitations," or time within which to sue, for a misrepresentation or failure to make a required disclosure (fraud) is only 6 years, so if you bought the property 8 years ago, it is too late to hold the seller liable even if he did know and intentionally hide this.
Similarly, while the title company could theoretically be liable for missing this, it is too late to hold them liable: the statutes of limitation for all the possible grounds to sue them (fraud; breach of contract; professional negligence) are all less than 8 years.
Your only recourse may be if you have title insurance that is in effect; if you do, you have whatever rights and recourse it gives you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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