If the home I live in was given as a gift but the owner died before a Will was drawn up, what are my rights to the property?

Owner has a surviving spouse. I have a notarized document that the owner and I signed that if the property shall be sold in the future, I’m to receive a portion of the profits after the original price of the home. In other words, after the house sells and the owner recieved his portion of what he paid into the original price of the home, then he would share that money with me.

Asked on November 10, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Please seek legal help and bring the document with you.  It has to be determined if the document is considered valid under the law in any capacity.  The ownership interest of the decedent matters here.  If he has a surviving spouse and they owned the property jointly then she is now the owner and the document - which seems to be an "if in the future" kind of thing that did not happen in his lifetime - would be worthless.  What was its basis?  The repayment of a debt?  Is that in there?  Get legal help.  Good luck.

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