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Wendy, Home Seller in Fort Worth, TX

selling a property that that has 5 owners with an undivided interest

Asked by Wendy, Fort Worth, TX Wed Feb 4, 2009

5owners have a farm that each has an undivided interest in, the land has not been partitioned and now 1
owner has sued the other 4 owners to partition, we 4 have an offer to buy our interest. The contract has the condition that the buyer must reach a binding partition agreement with the other owner, can this be done legally since it is in litigation.

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Well, this certainly has created a very sticky situation. I am unsure why the four owners signed such a contract without the consent of the fifth owner, but the other owner has the legal right to file for partition. Normally partitions cannot be stopped, and they can be very lengthy, expensive, and nasty.

I would first examine the deed to determine if it is a joint tenants with rights of survivorship deed (JTWROS) or a joint tenancy in common (TIC) deed. Each deed will yield different results during a partition. With a JTWROS, all owners have an equal share regardless of contribution to purchase. So the proceeds would be distributed equally among all owners during a partiton. If the deed is a TIC deed, the ownership shares would be determined according to the amount each owner contributed toward the purchase price. If the property was inherited, then the proceeds most commony would be distributed equally.

Assuming that you have shares that are equal, or 1/5 shares, the proceeds from the sale of the property would be distributed equally. Now if the fifth person does not like the price that the other four of you have contracted, then you basically must either convience the fifth person to accept 1/5 of the contracted price or enter into the partition process. Filing for a partition is a legal right, and it cannot be stopped.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 8, 2010
You'll need to contact a board certified real estate attorney. I'm sure there is a way you can come to an agreement. Litigation can always be stopped....in fact it often is settled before court.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 5, 2009
Bruce Lynn, Real Estate Pro in Coppell, TX
MVP'08
Contact
Not knowing about entire file terms and conditions of executed contractual agreement signed by all owners best confer with attorney who created legal documents resolve issues .
Web Reference: http://www.lynn911.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 4, 2009
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