What are my rights to property in VA both our names are on the deed but only hers on the Mortgage we do not live together any more I live in MA

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What are my rights to property in VA both our names are on the deed but only hers on the Mortgage we do not live together any more I live in MA

We were not married but lived together for ten years. I moved out 16 months ago back to MA and want to know what my rights are as far as the property, the deed says the surviver gets the property.

Asked on May 20, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You are both on the deed (title) so you both own the home.  She is only on the mortgage -- so she is responsible for the debt. You are living separately, so that will impact as to expenses in the home (whether it is a marital debt or not), equity in the home (when and how much is a marital asset). 

Oh, I just read you weren't married.  Then it depends on how you are on the property -- joint owners or tenants in common to determine ultimate rights. Ahh, you are joint tenants, which means that you are each entitled to the whole.  This means if you die before she does, she gets the entire house and vice versa.  So, question now is is she going to sue you for anything -- half the expenses (minus the mortgage)?  Are you going to sue for partition, buy her out or ask she buy you out?

Think about it and talk to a real estate attorney in Virginia about your best option.  Try www.attorneypages.com.


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