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Real live case- again. Lady bought a house and owned it free and clear. She gets married. She then uses a Quit Claim Deed from Staples and puts her husband on the deed. They divorce 6 months later. He uses a Staples Quit Claim Deed to deed her back his half of the property plus two other properties.

Lady moves out of state. Starts having tenant problems. So she gets her neighbor to help her. He agrees to do so as long as she puts him on the deed so he has a legal right to call for contractors, handle leases, etc. She uses the now famous Staples Quit Claim Deed and puts him on the deed. Her neighbor passes two years later. Two more years go by and she decides to sell.

Houston we have a problem. The Quit Claim Deed reads as follows:

“For valuable consideration, the Grantor hereby quit claims and transfers all rights, title, and interest held by the Grantor in the following described real estate and improvements to the Grantee, and his or her heirs and assigns, to have and hold forever, …”

Notice there is no mention of any other form of ownership such as joint tenancy, or tenancy in the entirety. Therefore under Florida law it defaults to Tenants in Common. Under Tenants in Common they each own half of the property. They each can sell their half if they choose. If one of them dies their share is passed on to their heirs and does not revert back to the remaining owner as it would under a rights of survivorship. Without realizing it she gave away half of her house. And she was thinking when he passed that his ownership rights would revert back to her. It does not under a Tenants in Common.

So the only way she can sell her house is to have her neighbors heirs probate his estate so they can sign any sales documents that may be presented to them. She plans on fighting this in court since he never paid any mortgage payments, or for any repairs, or even bought any of the equity. My sources tell me the judge will listen and then go back to the documents and she won’t like the outcome.