Real property includes land and anything that’s erected on that land. That seems simple enough, but how this real property is titled can significantly affect how it will be transferred at the time of your estate’s administration. In fact, the proceedings can become quite complicated and sometimes don’t play out the way you’d intended. Take the time to plan your estate carefully.
It’s important to think ahead regarding your estate. After all, there is no crystal ball that will alert you to life’s upcoming twists and turns. How your real property is titled will affect how it’s passed on to your family and loved ones. Taking the time to get your property titled correctly in the first place will also help you streamline the transfer of ownership of the property. There are several common means of ownership:
- Sole ownership;
- Joint ownership with rights of survivorship (the property is jointly owned, but either party can inherit the other’s share);
- Tenants in common (the property is jointly owned, but each party’s heirs will inherit that party’s share);
- Tenants by the entirety (the property is owned by a married couple, and either spouse’s share will be passed to the surviving spouse).
Real property can also be owned through business entities such as corporations, LLCs, or partnerships – or through trusts. The way that you set up ownership will affect your estate’s administration process.
Your ability to avoid probate depends in part upon how your real property titles are held. The most common means of avoiding probate is when a couple implements ownership as tenants by the entirety, which can eliminate prolonged delays and hassles. Another option is a revocable living trust that holds title to your real property. Such a trust can delineate exactly how you want your property divided upon its inheritance by others, and there is no need for the property to go into probate.
Estate planning gets more and more complicated from here. Ensure that your wishes are carried out with the administration of your estate by consulting with an estate planning attorney regarding your real property.
If You Have Questions about Estate Planning and Your Real Property, Call 201-498-9768 Today for More Information
Estate planning is often tricky, and how your real property titles are held matters. Don’t leave your estate to chance; consult with an experienced estate planning lawyer. At John L. Schettino law, we’ll provide you with a free phone consultation and will work with you to ensure that your wishes are appropriately reflected in your real-property titles. Contact or call me at 201-498-9768 for a free consultation regarding your estate planning.