Understanding the Difference Between Joint Tenancy and Tenancy in Common

Lawyer in his office


Many couples often decide to buy a home together. Though it is exciting to purchase a place together as it shows love and a strong bond between couples, they often forget the legal protection they may face when the relationship ends. Therefore, our estate law attorney in Queens advises couples to develop legal understanding before buying a property. It is much needed to save you from frustration and financial and legal difficulties later down the line.


Lawyer with her client in her office


Regarding property buying and ownership, there are two common ways to hold the title together. These are joint tenants and tenants in common. In both these legal arrangements, couples can benefit from the family law services in Queens and seek the assistance of a lawyer.

Let’s take a deeper dive to develop a better understanding of these two options and see how they are different:

Percentage Division

In a tenancy in common, couples agree on the percentage of the property each partner will own. It can be fixed from the outset, like a 75 and 25 percent purchase price split, but it can always be altered with time. The benefit of tenancy in a common arrangement for couples is that if they decide to sell the property or separate in the future, they will know the percentage of the property they own and move forward with legal proceedings amicably.

Compared to tenancy in common, joint tenancy is slightly different. The joint tenancy arrangement is also called co-owners of real estate. As the name suggests, both partners have an equal share in the property. In other words, the share is proportionate to the number of joint tenants. So, if the property belongs to a couple, they will each own a 50 percent share.

Transfer of Tenancy

Another big difference between these two options is the transfer of tenancy. Tenancy in common is made by a deed. In this deed, the previous owner transfers the interest to the new tenants. Furthermore, the tenants can obtain the real estate together from the owner or buy separately or inherit their ownership at a different time from previous owners.

For example, owner X can sell their property interest individually at any point while owner Y can retain their property interest. Similarly, upon owner X’s demise, their heirs can inherit the ownership rights while owner Y continues to own their property percentage.

In contrast, in joint tenancy, the right of survivorship applies. So, when one joint tenant dies, the other joint tenant inherits the property interests of the deceased tenant. However, if the owners are alive and one wants to sell their interest, the tenancy will be converted into a tenancy in common.

Contact our experienced Estate lawyer Brooklyn and Queens. New York City probate law firm can provide you with quality guidance, evaluate options and make the best choice.


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Understanding the Difference Between Joint Tenancy and Tenancy in Common

Ledwidge & Associates

Ledwidge & Associates, P.C. in New York City has years of experience helping clients create estate plans that fit their needs. We have the experience and resources to handle your critical legal matters with the utmost care and attention to detail.
Understanding the Difference Between Joint Tenancy and Tenancy in Common

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