How do we change title o our home to tenancy by the entirety? Can my husband and I do this ourselves? We now own home 50/50 with survivorship rights. Thanks.
3 Answers from Attorneys
You need to see a lawyer. "50/50 with survivorship rights" would not be a typical form of ownership. Generally, a simple deed (exempt from recordation and transfer taxes) is all it would take, but you also need to verify that this is the right thing for you to do, and that it does not constitute a fraudulent transfer as to creditors of either of you. And it may well be that you already own it as tenants by the entireties, if you acquired it after you were married.
You may already own it this way, if the "unities of title" were all present when you purchased. A lawyer needs to read the existing deed and ask you a few questions about when you were married.
The short answer is by a deed and yes, you could prepare a deed yourself but generally it is ill-advised to do so without counsel. By law, only an attorney or a party to the deed itself can prepare one. The cost to have counsel prepare a deed is relatively modest (my firm charges a flat fee, others may as well) however the costs of mistakes are far more costly -- as any real estate attorney who litigates can tell you, errors in a deed can cost thousands of dollars down the road to fix, sometimes requires litigation and sometimes are not fixable.
Maryland law imposes taxes on most deeds when they are recorded -- a spousal transfer should be exempt from this tax, but care should be taken to draw this up in such a way that the tax office recognizes the exemption.
While general in nature I hope the above information helps.
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