Legal Question in Real Estate Law in Tennessee

Joint Tenancy and Death

My Father-in-law, my wife, and I own a piece of real estate in Unicoi County Tennessee. The Deed to the property is written ''Joint tenancy as tenants in common with right of survivorship''. I was told at the time the Deed was written, that it meant that we all three own the property 100%, both jointly and severally, and that upon the death of one of us, it would pass 100% to the two survivors.

Well, my father-in-law recently passed away. I am now being told that his share of the property will pass to his surviving spouse. She was never on the deed and there was no Will and my father-in-law had no other assets except a pension that my mother-in-law is now getting.

My question is...

Does my wife and I now own the property 100%, or is my mother-in-law now part owner.

Asked on 10/16/07, 4:43 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Joseph T. Kirkland, Jr. Kirkland, Rothman-Branning & Associates, PLLC

Re: Joint Tenancy and Death

It is impossible to tell, without seeing the whole deed, exactly the outcome, but from what you have stated I think the property belongs to you and your wife. I do not see how your mother-in-law inherits. That is the whole reason for the language you quoted. I recommend that you seek the advice of an attorney, local to you, who handles real estate transactions on a regular basis.

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Answered on 10/17/07, 11:23 am


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