If a couple purchases an estate and the deed is filed jointly, if one spouse dies would it be opened in probate?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If a couple purchases an estate and the deed is filed jointly, if one spouse dies would it be opened in probate?

Asked on June 7, 2012 under Estate Planning, Maryland

Answers:

Bradley Boyum / Boyum Law Firm

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Probate has a few purposes, but one of the main purposes is to transfer property when the owner is no longer alive to sign the deed.  If the property is held jointly the language on the deed should be similar to the following:"held as joint tenants with right of survivorship." 

Just because both spouses signed the deed does not mean that they are both owners.  Nebraska, along with most other states, require both spouses to sign deeds as evidence that the non-owner spouse was aware of the transfer.

If the property is held as joint tenants, the property would pass to the living owner at the death of one of the owners.  It may not require a probate case to accomplish the change in title but you probably have to file the death certificate with the register of deeds as proof.

The safest route to a clean title is to file a probate case, clear the deceased estate of all debts and file a new deed.


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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption