Anyone who is interested in sharing ownership of Rhode Island real estate will discover that there are various ways for multiple parties to share a piece of real estate, each of them with benefits and disadvantages to the parties, depending on the situation. The most common types of shared property ownership in Rhode island are joint tenancy and tenancy-in-common.
The most common form of joint possession of real property in Rhode Island is called a tenancy-in-common. Under state law, any property that is sold, given, or otherwise conveyed to two or more persons is presumed to be a tenancy-in-common, unless the conveyance expressly states otherwise. Under tenancy-in-common, two or more tenants each own a partial share of the entire property, although they each have the right of possession and use of the entire property. Tenants in common do not need to hold equal shares of a property, and their individual shares can be transferred or sold to another party without the consent of the other owners. If a tenant in common dies while in possession of the property, her portion of the property will go to her heirs.
The second most common form of joint possession of real property in Rhode Island is joint tenancy. Joint tenancy is the primary form of joint property ownership for married couples, although any group of two or more persons may elect to hold property as joint tenants if they desire and the other requirements for a joint tenancy are met. Joint tenancy is similar to a tenancy-in-common, however, there are a few key differences.
The primary difference between a joint tenancy and a tenancy-in-common is that joint tenancy is designed with a right of survivorship. This means that if a joint tenant dies while in possession of the property, their ownership interest in the property goes to the other joint tenants, and not to their heirs. This is why a house owned by a husband and wife as joint tenants will go to the surviving spouse in the event of one spouse’s death, and not to the heirs of the deceased. Joint tenants also must own equal shares of the property, and each has the full right of use and possession of the property
Severing A Joint Tenancy or Tenancy-in-Common
There are various reasons that a property owner may wish to sever joint tenancy or a tenancy-in-common, and either create another form of joint ownership, or partition a property into separate tracts/units without any shared ownership or possession. A skilled Rhode Island property attorney can advise anyone with questions as to which property ownership arrangement may best suit their needs.
Do You Need the Help of a Lawyer with Your Property Issue?
If you are interested in purchasing property with another person, or have a question about modifying a previously existing shared property ownership arrangement, a qualified Rhode Island real estate attorney from Bilodeau Capalbo can help you make the best decision to protect your interests. At Bilodeau Capalbo, we represent property owners in all types of issues, including modifying joint property ownership. Our experienced real estate attorneys will help you act with confidence. To discuss your situation with no obligation, call 401-300-4055 to schedule your free consultation today.