Massachusetts  |  Real Estate Law

Legal Question

Asked on: 10/23/09, 8:13 am

If you have a partner on a house and only I put up the down payment and the other person refuses to go look for another job and won't pay there portion what is my legal right.

3 Answers


Answered on: 10/28/09, 8:31 am by Alan Fanger

If you and the partner co-own the house, you have the right to file something known as a petition for partition of the property, in either the Probate Court or the Land Court. In this proceeding the court would appoint someone to sell the house (that person typically hires a broker, who then actively markets the property). In this proceeding the proceeds from the sale are "equitably adjusted" to reflect what each partner contributed (e.g. down payment, taxes, maintenance, etc.). Feel free to contact my office if you wish to discuss this matter in greater detail.


Did you find this answer helpful?

0 Users found this answer helpful.

0 Attorneys agree with this answer.


Alan S. Fanger, Esq. 60 William Street, Suite 300 Wellesley, MA 02481

Other answers from this attorney

Answered on: 10/28/09, 10:19 am by Christopher Vaughn-Martel

Attorney Fanger's description is excellent. I would add that you also have the option (if both co-owners are agreeable) to purchase your partner's share of the equity in the home.

For example, you are each entitled to 50% of the value of the home, and the home is appraised at $300,000.00 with a present mortgage of $230,000.00. You have the option of refinancing and paying your partner a lump-sum of $35,000.00 (50% of the $70,000.00 in equity). Of course, if you or s/he made a significant initial investment in the home, that would need to be credited.

Please feel free to contact my office (617-357-4898) if you would like to attempt buy-out negotiations prior to filing a Petition for Partition.


Did you find this answer helpful?

0 Users found this answer helpful.

0 Attorneys agree with this answer.


VAUGHN-MARTEL LAW 1180 Washington Street, Suite 101 Boston, MA 02118

Other answers from this attorney

Answered on: 10/28/09, 11:06 am by Joseph Murray

If you can't buy out your partner's interest you could retain an attorney to negotiate a settlement or file a petition to partition the property to determine the equitable interests of the partners and force a sale to liquidate those interests if necessary. Good Luck!


Did you find this answer helpful?

0 Users found this answer helpful.

0 Attorneys agree with this answer.


Joseph M. Murray, Esq. 56 North Bedford Street East Bridgewater, MA 02333-1173

Other answers from this attorney

Didn't find what you were looking for? Ask an Attorney!

Get answers from the top Attorneys
Ask Question

125 Answers given in the last few hours.

8663 Active attorneys ready to answer your question

Search Past Answers:
  Advanced Search