Can You Sell a Property with a Deceased Person on the Deed

Legal Rights of Co-Owners After a Co-Owner Death

Legal Options for Resolving Disputes Among Co-Owners


Mediation is a popular option for resolving disputes among co-owners as it allows for a neutral third party to facilitate communication and negotiation. This can often lead to a quicker and more cost-effective resolution compared to traditional litigation. In fact, according to a recent study by the American Bar Association, 70% of mediations result in a settlement agreement.


Arbitration is another alternative dispute resolution method that involves a neutral arbitrator making a binding decision on the dispute. While arbitration is more formal and structured than mediation, it can still be a faster and less expensive option than going to court. In fact, the American Arbitration Association reports that arbitration cases are resolved on average within six months.


When all other options have been exhausted, litigation may be necessary to resolve a dispute among co-owners. While litigation can be a lengthy and costly process, it provides the opportunity for a judge or jury to make a final decision on the matter. According to statistics from the Bureau of Justice, the average length of a civil trial in the United States is 17.9 months.

Partition Action

In cases where co-owners cannot come to an agreement on how to divide or use a property, a partition action may be necessary. This legal remedy allows for the property to be physically divided among the co-owners or sold with the proceeds divided according to each owner’s interest. According to data from the American Bar Association, partition actions are commonly used in real estate disputes.

Benefits of Legal Assistance

Seeking legal assistance when facing a dispute among co-owners can provide numerous benefits. A lawyer experienced in alternative dispute resolution can help guide co-owners through mediation, arbitration, or litigation to find a resolution that protects their interests. Additionally, legal counsel can ensure that co-owners understand their rights and responsibilities under the law.

Furthermore, having legal representation can help co-owners navigate complex legal procedures and paperwork, saving them time and stress. According to a survey by the American Bar Association, 80% of individuals who used a lawyer for their legal matters reported feeling more confident in the outcome of their case.

Rights of Survivorship and Probate Procedures: Understanding Your Legal Rights

Rights of Survivorship

Rights of survivorship refer to the legal right of a surviving joint owner to inherit the entire property when the other joint owner passes away. This concept is commonly associated with joint tenancy and tenancy by the entirety, where two or more individuals own property together. In these types of ownership, the property automatically passes to the surviving owner upon the death of the other owner, without the need for probate.

One of the key benefits of rights of survivorship is that it allows for a smooth and efficient transfer of property without the delays and costs associated with probate. This can be particularly beneficial for married couples who own property jointly, as it ensures that the surviving spouse will inherit the property outright, regardless of the terms of a will or other estate planning documents.

Probate Procedures

On the other hand, probate is the legal process through which a deceased person’s assets are distributed to beneficiaries and heirs. Probate is typically required when there is no joint tenancy or other form of ownership with rights of survivorship in place, or when the deceased person’s assets are solely in their name.

Probate can be a complex and time-consuming process, involving court supervision and the involvement of executors or personal representatives. It can also be expensive, as court fees and attorney fees may be incurred during the probate process. Additionally, probate proceedings are a matter of public record, which can lead to privacy concerns for some individuals.

Understanding Your Legal Rights

It is important to understand your legal rights when it comes to rights of survivorship and probate procedures, as they can have a significant impact on your estate plan and the distribution of your assets. By establishing joint ownership with rights of survivorship or utilizing other estate planning tools, you can help ensure that your property is transferred according to your wishes and avoid the costs and complexities of probate.

Whether you are considering joint ownership with rights of survivorship or need guidance on navigating the probate process, it is essential to seek the advice of a qualified estate planning attorney. An experienced lawyer can help you understand your legal rights, create an effective estate plan, and ensure that your assets are protected for future generations.

Understanding Tenancy in Common vs Joint Tenancy

In this article, we will explore the key differences between tenancy in common and joint tenancy to help you make an informed decision about which option may be best for you.

Tenancy in Common

Tenancy in common is a form of ownership where each owner has a distinct, separate, and undivided interest in the property. This means that each owner has the right to possess a specific portion of the property, and upon their death, their share of the property will pass to their heirs. Unlike joint tenancy, there is no right of survivorship in tenancy in common, meaning that when one owner passes away, their share of the property does not automatically transfer to the remaining owners.

  • Each owner can sell or transfer their interest in the property without the consent of the other owners
  • Owners can have unequal shares of the property
  • Upon the death of an owner, their share of the property passes to their heirs

Tenancy in common is a popular choice for individuals who want to own property with others but wish to retain more control over their share of the property. It allows for greater flexibility in terms of ownership arrangements and does not require all owners to have equal shares of the property.

Joint Tenancy

Joint tenancy is a form of ownership where each owner has an equal, undivided interest in the property. One key feature of joint tenancy is the right of survivorship, which means that when one owner passes away, their share of the property automatically transfers to the surviving owners. This can be beneficial for ensuring that the property remains in the hands of the surviving owners without the need for probate.

  • All owners must have an equal share of the property
  • Upon the death of an owner, their share of the property passes to the surviving owners
  • Owners cannot sell or transfer their interest in the property without the consent of the other owners

Joint tenancy is often chosen by couples or family members who want to ensure that the property remains within the family and does not become subject to probate upon the death of one owner. It provides a sense of security and continuity for the owners, knowing that their interest in the property will automatically transfer to the surviving owners.

Which Option is Right for You?

When deciding between tenancy in common and joint tenancy, it is important to consider your specific needs and preferences. If you value flexibility and control over your share of the property, tenancy in common may be the best option for you. On the other hand, if you want to ensure that the property remains in the hands of the surviving owners and avoid probate, joint tenancy may be the right choice.

Ultimately, the decision between tenancy in common and joint tenancy will depend on your individual circumstances and goals. It is recommended to consult with a qualified real estate attorney who can provide guidance and advice based on your specific situation.

Understanding the differences between tenancy in common and joint tenancy is essential for anyone considering owning property with others. By knowing the key features and benefits of each form of ownership, individuals can make an informed decision that aligns with their needs and preferences. Whether you choose tenancy in common or joint tenancy, it is important to carefully consider the implications of each option and seek professional advice to ensure that your interests are protected.

Allocation of Ownership Interest in the Event of Death

At our law firm, we understand the complexities of ownership interest allocation and the importance of having a clear plan in place. In this article, we will discuss the implications of ownership interest in the event of death and how you can ensure a smooth transition of ownership.

Understanding Ownership Interest

Ownership interest in a business refers to the percentage of the company that an individual or entity owns. This ownership interest gives the owner certain rights and responsibilities within the business, such as decision-making power, profit-sharing, and voting rights.

When a business owner passes away, their ownership interest does not automatically disappear. Instead, it becomes part of their estate and must be dealt with according to their estate plan or state laws. Without a clear plan in place, the ownership interest may be subject to probate, which can lead to delays, legal fees, and potential disputes among heirs.

The Importance of Estate Planning

Estate planning is essential for all business owners, regardless of the size or type of business they own. A well-thought-out estate plan can ensure that your ownership interest is transferred smoothly to your chosen beneficiaries, minimizing the risk of disputes and ensuring the continued operation of the business.

Through estate planning, business owners can designate specific individuals or entities to inherit their ownership interest, set out a plan for how the business will be managed in the event of their death, and provide clear instructions for the distribution of assets. By taking the time to create a comprehensive estate plan, business owners can protect their business and their loved ones from unnecessary complications.

Options for Ownership Interest Allocation

There are several options available to business owners for the allocation of ownership interest in the event of death. Some common strategies include:

  • Buy-sell agreements: Buy-sell agreements are legally binding contracts that dictate what will happen to a business owner’s ownership interest upon their death. These agreements can provide for the sale of the deceased owner’s interest to the remaining owners, a designated buyer, or the business itself.
  • Trusts: Establishing a trust can be an effective way to transfer ownership interest outside of probate and ensure that the beneficiary receives their share of the business in a timely manner.
  • Gifts: Business owners can choose to gift their ownership interest to their chosen beneficiaries during their lifetime, effectively transferring ownership without the need for probate.

It is important for business owners to carefully consider their options and work with a qualified estate planning attorney to create a plan that meets their specific needs and goals.

Ownership interest allocation in the event of death is a critical issue for business owners to address. By creating a comprehensive estate plan and carefully considering their options for ownership interest allocation, business owners can protect their business and ensure a smooth transition of ownership to their chosen beneficiaries.

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