A "quiet title action" is a lawsuit to establish ownership of real property (land and improvements). The court sorts out various claims to a piece of property that clouds the ownership of the property. By declaring the rightful owner of the property, the court "quiets" the title (Civ. Code § 3412) and removes any cloud to the property (Code Civ. Proc. § 764.030).
Common reasons for an association to file a quiet title action is when (i) the developer fails to transfer common areas to the association or (ii) a homeowner takes over part of the common area and claims it for himself under adverse possession, or (iii) easement disputes.
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