If my name is on a quitclaim deed to a house and the otherco-owner passes away, can their Will override the deed?

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If my name is on a quitclaim deed to a house and the otherco-owner passes away, can their Will override the deed?

We recently filed a quitclaim deed with my father, putting my name on the deed to his house. We did this so that when he passes away the house will be transferred to me. If in his Will my father gives the house to someone else in the family, could this override the quitclaim deed that we filed?

Asked on August 10, 2011 Michigan

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It depends. If you hold title in just your names, without any other designation, the you hold title as "tenants in common". This means that upon the death of 1 of the owners, the deceased owner's share will go to their estate and be distributed according to the terms of their Will if the have one (or state law of they do not).

If you hold title in your names followed by the designation "joint tenants with rights of survivorship" (or similar wording as dictated in your jurisdiction). This means that when 1 of the joint tenants dies, the surviving joint tenant becomes the 100% owner of the property. The deceased owner cannotWill such property to any one else, since this type of ownership interest passes outside of the probate estate.


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