In Alabama can a spouse sell a home when her spouse is in jail?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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In Alabama can a spouse sell a home when her spouse is in jail?

A friend of mine is in a military brig and his
wife is trying to sell their home without his
permission. Is this allowed?

Asked on August 18, 2017 under Family Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Who is on the title or deed to the home?
If just her, she can sell it without his permission: if she is the only one on the title (e.g. if she owned it pre-marriage,or inherited it from her family), it is her home only, so she does not need anyone's consent to sell it, whether spouse or not, though in a divorce, he might be entitled to a share of the proceeds, depending on the exact circumstances.
If the title is only in his name, clearly she cannot: legally, she is not an owner and has no authority over it.
If the title is in both their names, she cannot sell it without his consent; selling real estate requires the agreement of all owners, or else a court order requiring a sale.
If she is attempting to sell when she has no legal authority, your friend (or his father, as the attorney-in-fact [person given power by a POA]) can bring a legal action seeking a court order blocking the sale (and voiding any contract of sale). Your friend's father should consult with an attorney about how to do this: it can be somewhat procedurally complex.

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 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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