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Convenient Wills     The home visit will writing service

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Do you own your property jointly with someone else?  And if so, how is the property owned?  Is it as ‘joint tenants’ or as ‘tenants in common’?

The difference is important, and can have major consequences for your expected beneficiaries.

Joint Tenants

If you own your property as ‘joint tenants’ then on your death your property will go automatically to the surviving people named on the title deeds.  This is irrespective of what your Will says.  

The only time your Will applies to the distribution of the property is when you are the last surviving owner of the property.

Tenants in Common

If you own your property as ‘tenants in common’ but then you can give away your beneficial interests in the property to whoever you wish.  This means that any gift you include in your Will will apply to your beneficial interest in the property.

Severing the Tenancy

You can change the tenancy of a property from joint tenants to tenants in common by severing the tenancy.

When you sever the tenancy of a property – to make it ‘tenants in common’ - you remain the legal owner of the property.  However, from within the legal ownership you create two equal equitable shares which you can give away individually.

Estate Planning Opportunities

Property held as ‘tenants in common’ allows a number of estate planning opportunities to be used.  These include maximising your inheritance tax allowances, and protecting your children from being disinherited.

A Cautionary Warning

It is most important that you hold a valid will when your property is held as ‘tenants in common’.

How to Sever Your Tenancy

You can sever the tenancy of the property yourself or you can use our services for a small fee.

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Joint Tenancy v. Tenants in Common

Do you know the implications of owning a property as ‘joint tenants’ rather than as ‘tenants in common’?

Should you consider converting the tenancy of your jointly-owned property? This is done by severing the tenancy of the property.

Should you  change and Tenancy?

If you want to give to charity on your death you must make a Will. What’s more … your executors need a discharge clause in your Will; failure to include this and the gift risks failing.

Read more giving to charity by clicking here.

Did you know …