Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in North Carolina

If a house is left to four siblings and one wants the property sold and the others don't , what happens?

Asked on 8/14/11, 10:20 am

3 Answers from Attorneys

Cheryl David Law Offices of Cheryl David

If all of the siblings can't agree the house may not be sold without a court order. Hire an attorney.

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Answered on 8/14/11, 5:40 pm

A house left to four siblings is a recipe for a disaster. If the parents are stil alive, theye need to see an estate planning attorney and discuss this. Perhaps they can leave their home to a trust in their wills or in a revocable living trust if they don't want the home to be sold. Or, if they want the hpme to be sold, they can provide for that. Or, if they know that only certain kids want it, they can arrange for their executor to offer the home to those kids and make them buy out the share of the children that don't want it. There are a lot of options, but these need to be discussed with a probate attorney.

If the parents are already deceased, this is a mess. If one of the children wants to sell the home, then the other 3 children should buy out the share. If nobody can agree on a price or some children cannot afford it, then any of the children can force a sale of the property through a process called partition. The property will then be sold to the highest bidder and the money divided among the four children.

Depending on whether the children have or have not inherited the land will depend on what kind of an attorney is needed. If the parents are alive, they need to see an estate planning attorney. If the parents are dead and their estate is in probate, see a probate litigation attorney. If the parents are dead and the estate has completed probate, then a real estate litigation attorney will be needed.

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Answered on 8/15/11, 1:20 pm

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