What are my legal rights regarding joint home ownership?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What are my legal rights regarding joint home ownership?

My dad just recently passed away; prior to that he gave the house and put it into mine and my 3 brothers names. However, my 1 brother wants to buy the house but doesn’t have the money to do so. He’s been on disability and he can’t afford the house he lives in now. How long do I have to wait for him to decide that he can’t buy the house? He’s talking about wanting to move in because he owes quarter of the house.

Asked on July 19, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Ohio


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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

When co-owners of real estate cannot agree as to ownership matters, there is the legal renedy of "partition". In such an action, the property will be ordered to be divided if possible. In not, as in the case of a single family house, the court will instead order a "sale in lieu of partition". Accordingly, the property will be put on the market and sold for fair market value. The proceeds will then be distributed equitably. However, before the property is offered to 3rd parties, any owner who wants to buy out the other owne is given the chance to do so. At this point, you should consult directly with a real estate attorney in the area who can best advise you further.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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