What are the rights if 50/50 property owners?

I own 50% of a home that was passed on to me after a death in which I have lived in for over 30 years. Can the other person force me to sell or can I stay in the home if they own the other 50% have not done anything or been part of the home.

Asked on July 31, 2018 under Real Estate Law, North Dakota

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not an owner has not paid for or performed any maintenance or repair of thier property, they share all the same rights as the has owner who has done so. Further, there can be a forced a sale of jointly held property, even if one of the owners does not want to sell. The law provides the remedy of "parition". In such an action, the property will be ordered to be divided if possible. If not (such as in the case of a single family residence), the court will instead order a "sale in lieu of partition". Accordingly, the house will be put on the market and sold for fair market value; the proceeds will then be equitably distributed. However, before the property is offered to 3rd parties, any owner who wants to buy out the other owner out is given the opportunity to do so. At this point, you should consult directly with a real estate attorney in your area who can best advise you as to specific state law.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not an owner has not paid for or performed any maintenance or repair of thier property, they share all the same rights as the has owner who has done so. Further, there can be a forced a sale of jointly held property, even if one of the owners does not want to sell. The law provides the remedy of "parition". In such an action, the property will be ordered to be divided if possible. If not (such as in the case of a single family residence), the court will instead order a "sale in lieu of partition". Accordingly, the house will be put on the market and sold for fair market value; the proceeds will then be equitably distributed. However, before the property is offered to 3rd parties, any owner who wants to buy out the other owner out is given the opportunity to do so. At this point, you should consult directly with a real estate attorney in your area who can best advise you as to specific state law.


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