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Introduction to this document

Agreement to sever joint tenancy

Owning a property as joint beneficial owners means each joint owner is taxed on an equal share of income or gains derived from the property. However, if one of them dies, their share automatically passes to the others before any will comes into effect. Severing the joint tenancy and instead owning the property as tenants-in-common means that each owner is entitled to a specific share of the property which can be bequeathed to anyone they wish.

Automatic transfer

Most couples that jointly own a home assume they own half each. This is rarely true. In almost all cases, homes are owned under what is called joint tenancy. This means that if one of you dies, your half automatically passes to the other before any will comes into effect and therefore cannot be considered to be part of your estate. To get around this you must sever the joint tenancy and replace it with a tenancy-in-common. You can use our Agreement to Sever Joint Tenancy document for the first part of this process.