West Virginia Property Deed Laws

A father deeded property in West Virginia to his 7 children before he passed away. Today, the property is still deeded the same and two of the seven children are passed. One had a will, one did not. This property was not part of that instruments. The deed says no where that it goes to their heirs. Do the heirs of the deceased children have claim to the land, or does it revert to be split by the remaining living children?

Asked on June 9, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Ohio

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You have a very complicated situation here.  How was it deeded to the 7 children? Joint tenancy or tenants in common?

Generally, joint tenancy means each of the 7 owns the whole and every time one dies, it goes to the rest, who own it in whole.  So, if six die, the seventh has it all. The other six's heirs don't get it.

If it is owned as tenants in common, each owns a portion as indicated. So let's say each own 1/7.  If one of the seven dies, his or her 1/7 will go to his or her heirs, depending on will, trust, and intestate laws.  Some intestate laws (when no will or trust) state that it goes to the next surviving heir, some say it goes to the next set of heirs who are all surviving. This is called per stirpes or per capita.

Try www.attorneypages.com and look for an estate attorney.  Check his or her record at the State of Ohio.


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