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Title is the legal way of saying you own a right to something. For real estate purposes, title refers to ownership of the property, meaning that you have the rights to use that property. It may be a partial interest in the property or it may be the full. However, because you have title, you can access the land and potentially modify it as you see fit. Title also means that you can transfer that interest or portion that you own to others. However, you can never legally transfer more than you own.

Deeds, on the other hand, are actually the legal documents that transfer title from one person to another. It must be a written document, according to the Statute of Frauds. Sometimes the Deed is referred to as the vehicle of the property interest transfer. The transfers can be less than the title that you actually have. Deeds must be recorded in the courthouse or assessor's office to make them fully binding in most states, but a failure to file them does not change the transfer of title. It just means that the Deed is not perfected. An imperfect Deed does not mean that there is a problem with the title. It's just a problem with the way that the paperwork surrounding the Deed was handled.

This article contains general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Rocket Lawyer is not a law firm or a substitute for an attorney or law firm. The law is complex and changes often. For legal advice, please ask a lawyer.


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