House owned by my brother and my self.

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House owned by my brother and my self.

House purchased in 1979 by father, at time of purchase he put his, mine and my brother’s name on the deed. My father passed 8 years ago and now just me and my brother live there, the living arrangement between us is bad and I want to sell the house and go separate ways. My brother has no income and I foot most all bills. My question is can I force him sell the house or is the house in limbo if he does not want to sell. What are my options?

Asked on March 3, 2017 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

In a situation when owners of jointly held property cannot agree as to ownership matters, the law provides a remedy known as "partition". This is a legal action that can be ordered by a court. Pursuant to such an action, if the property can be divided it will be and each owner will be entitled to their share. However, if the property cannot be divided (as in the case of a single family home), then the court will order a sale of the property with an equitable distributution of the proceeds. That having been saidfirst, it will allow either co-owner to buy out the other co-owner's interest in the property for fair market value.


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