A family home was left to 3 children in which one has live there for 25 years. 2 want to sell but 1 doesn't.

Asked about 1 year ago - Bayonne, NJ

We have lived in the family home for 25 years in which we paid rent. Parents passed away and siblings not living there want to sell. Within the 25 years major improvements were made and paid for by the sibling living in the home. If the house is to be sold should the sibling living there be reimbursed for those major repairs? Also the siblings not living there did not want to rent out the parents apartment making the bills on the home harder to pay. What are the legal rights to the sibling living in the home who has maintained the upkeep of the home and also still paid most of the bills on the home for the past 3 years through the rent payment.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Kenneth A White


    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . First, your inquiry is not a Family Law questions but a Partition matter (which might otherwise be addressed in a real estate or probate forum).

    In general, if two or more people own a home together and at least one wants to sell, the other(s) must either buyout that first persons interest or otherwise liquidate the real property.

    Your questions regarding credits and off-sets are very fact specific and too complex for this forum, accordingly you should schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney who can review the specifics of your situtation with you and provide advice specific to your situation.

    Kenneth A. White, Esq.

    The Answer provided was based on the limited information provided, and represents information based on the law in... more
  2. Lawrence A Friedman

    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Many legal issues are inherent in your questions. Basically, nobody can force anyone else to sell or pay unless an agreement is reached or court case brought. Will terms would have a major impact on each siblings rights. You need legal counsel probably ASAP.

    Lawrence Friedman, Bridgewater, NJ. Certified as an Elder Law Attorney by the ABA approved National Elder Law Foundation, former Chair NJ State Bar Association Elder and Disabilities Law Section, Member Board of Consultors of NJSBA Real Property, Trusts & Estates Law Section, Vice Chair Special Needs Law Section of National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Taxation from N.Y.U. School of Law. Visit SpecialNeedsNJ.com for articles and Q&A on elder law, special needs, wills, trusts, estates, and tax. Visit SpecialNeedsNJ.com/blog and subscribe for free timely updates to be delivered to your inbox. Information on both Avvo and SpecialNeedsNJ.com does not constitute legal advice, as it is general in nature and may not apply to your situation or be subject to important changes. No attorney client relationship exists unless set forth in written engagement terms.

    Lawrence Friedman, Bridgewater, NJ. Certified as an Elder Law Attorney by the ABA approved National Elder Law... more
  3. James P. Frederick

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I agree with Mr. White. I would add that you have a complex situation here, and you are unlikely to be able to get a sufficient answer in a forum like this. If the family is unable to agree on how this should be handled, which would be best, then you are stuck with needing to retain a lawyer to make sure that your rights are protected.

    James Frederick

    ***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ******... more

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