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Transfer of property title after death of one spouse to living spouse

Honolulu, HI |

Condo owned in joint by husband and wife and husband died. We want to change title fo owenership to spouse

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Attorney answers 3


As long as this was owned as joint tenants or tenants by the entireties, there should not be a need to remove the deceased spouse. If it was owned as tenants in common, then probate would likely be necessary. What is the reason why you wish to remove the deceased spouse?

This can generally be done simply by recording the death certificate of the decedent.

James Frederick

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Attorney Frederick is correct. Typically, there is no need to remove the deceased spouse's name from the title of real property when the property was owned as "joint tenants with right of survivorship." When the property is sold or otherwise conveyed, then the death certificate will need to be produced to show that the surviving owner has the right to transfer the property. Good luck to you.

This information is presented as a public service. It should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor considered to be the formation of a lawyer/client relationship. I am licensed in Connecticut and New York and my answers are based upon the law in those jurisdictions. My answer to any specific question would likely be different if I were to review a client's file and have the opportunity to interview the client. Accordingly, I strongly urge you to retain an attorney in your jurisdiction with respect to any legal matter.


As the others mention, it depends on what you mean by being held "jointly". In either case, transferring title is typically not needed unless she is selling the property; in which case you should check with a title company in your area to see if they would insure title being transferred directly from the spouse without tranferring from the husband first.

If you do, you can either sign an affidavit of non-probate or file probate and do the transfer

Matthew Johnson phone# 206.747.0313 is licensed in the State of Washington and performs bankruptcy, short sale negotiations, and estate planning in Whatcom, Skagit, Snohomish, King and Pierce counties. The response does not constitute specific legal advice, which would require a full inquiry by the attorney into the complete background of the facts and circumstances surrounding this matter; rather, it is intended to be general legal information based on the limited information provided by the inquirer; it This response also does not constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship, which can only be established after a conflict of interest evaluation is completed, your case is accepted, and a fee agreement is signed. Johnson Legal Group, PLLC

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