Can I lose title to squatters?

I have an ex who’s been living in my condo for the past three years rent free. I have full ownership/title, but I’m worried that there may be a legal way for her to take possession/title from me through an obscure real estate squatters law out there. This property is in another country (Panama) but I’d be interested in this same scenario in California if anyone has info.


I don’t know Panamanian law well enough to know one way or the other. You need local counsel to answer your question and advise you properly.

Research adverse possession for CA. Living on the property in defiance of the owner for a period of time can do it. Some states require the squatter to pay taxes in order to make a claim.

In Panama? I wouldn’t be surprised. Most Central and South American countries have squatter’s rights.

The best way to get an answer is to join an ex-pats group for Panama. There you can get the answer from someone who isn’t expecting to make money off of you, nor willing to lead you on with half truths in order to extract more money from you.

In California, you protect yourself by having written agreements.

Is your ex livinig there with your full knowledge and permission? If so, then is she really a squatter?