If you’re trying to change the way you own your home and you’re facing opposition you might want to keep reading. This week Prestige Tax and Trust Services tells you how to change joint tenancy to tenants in common when one tenant doesn’t agree.
The Difference between Joint Tenancy and Tenants in Common
There are two ways to own your home. The first is joint tenancy. This gives every owner equal rights to the home, and allows the ownership of the property to pass automatically into the hands of the others when one passes away. However it doesn’t allow you to pass on your ownership in a will.
The second is tenants in common. This allows each owner to hold separate shares in the property. Say person A owns 60% whilst person B holds 40%. It also allows you to pass your shares on in a will, however your shares don’t pass on automatically to the other owners when you die under a tenants in common framework.
When Would You Need to Convert From a Joint Tenancy to Tenants in Common?
There are certain times where you may need to convert from one type of ownership to another. For the purposes of this article, say you and your partner have divorced and one person wants to relieve themselves of ownership of the property, which is a joint tenancy. You would need to convert from a joint tenancy to a tenancy in common.
When all the tenants agree, this is a straightforward process. It gets more complicated if the other owners don’t agree to the proposed alteration. If this is the case, there is a process you need to go through to change a joint tenancy to tenants in common.
Changing from Joint Tenancy to Tenants in Common When One Owner Doesn’t Agree
There are several steps you need to take to change from joint tenancy to tenants in common when one or more owners don’t agree. These steps are:
- Serve a written notice of the change on the other owners. Called a ‘notice of severance,’ you can employ a conveyancer to help you with this.
- Apply for a Form A Restriction. You need to download and complete form SEV if you wish to register a restriction without the agreement of the other owners.
- Prepare any necessary supporting documents.
- Send the form along with any supporting documents to the Land Registry’s Citizen Centre. This is free.
There is one supporting document you need to send with your forms if all the owners agree. This is an original certified copy of the notice of severance signed by every single owner.
Yet if the other owners don’t agree, you can’t send this. Instead, you need to accompany your forms with a letter certifying you’ve done one of the following with the notice of severance:
- Given it to every other owner.
- Left it at the other owners’ last known business or home address in the UK.
- Sent it by recorded delivery or registered post to the other owners’ last known home or business address and it hasn’t been returned undelivered.
Let Prestige Tax and Trust Services Help You
Changing joint tenancy to tenants in common can be a complex process when every other owner agrees. Yet when they don’t it gets infinitely more complicated, which is why you should let Prestige Tax and Trust Services help you make the chance. We have the legal expertise you need to ensure you change joint tenancy to tenants in common even when the other owners of the property don’t agree.