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Real estate question - ownership

San Francisco, CA |

My two brothers, one sister and me bought a home in 2000. We were all single at the time the house was acquired. The mortgage of the house was divided into four of us. Then in 2004, my sister got married and she moved out of the house. Since she got married, she has stopped making payment on our house mortgage. My two brothers and me continued to make mortgage payment but my sister's name is still on the deed of the house. I have several questions, it a requirement of her husband's signature should we decide to sell the property? 2. Should my sister and her husband got divorced, can her husband claim one half of her share of the house? 3. Can my sister's share in ownership of the house become her husband should she pass away? 4. My sister has stopped making mortgage payment since 2004 after she got married. Eventhough her name is on the deed, is she legally entitled to her share when she is not making mortgage payment?

Attorney Answers 1


This is a complicated issue and depends on several things: 1) Whether you and your siblings have any type of agreement (written or otherwise) concerning payments and ownership; 2) How title is held; and, 3) Whether there is a pre-marital agreement or marital agreement between your sister and her husband. Generally, property acquired prior to a marriage is separate property. However, if your sister has helped pay for property taxes, insurance, or anything related to the house, with proceeds from her job (i.e., community property), her husband may have some interest in the home if they were to divorce. Feel free to give me a call for a free initial consultation. 415-835-6777.

Disclaimer: You should discuss your situation with a local attorney, as the above statement is a general overview and does not take into account all of the factual considerations in your case. Nothing in this statement creates an attorney-client relationship.

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