What would you do if something happened to you or someone listed on your property title? Survivorship is a right that protects multiple owners of a single property.
When two or more people take title to a property as joint tenants, one of the rights they are awarded is a legal principle known as the “right of survivorship”. This means that upon the death of a joint tenant, the surviving owner(s) automatically assume equal portions of the home that was once owned by the deceased (regardless of what is written in the deceased person’s will). Importantly, the right of survivorship overrides probate or any other process that divides their estate.
For example, imagine that Michael and Susan own a home as joint tenants. Michael's will leaves his share to his son Daniel. When Michael dies, Susan becomes the sole owner of the home, despite the fact that Daniel is the beneficiary listed in Michael’s will.
Making a survivorship application
Survivorship applications are necessary because until the official records are updated, a property cannot be sold, mortgaged or otherwise dealt with.
Say a joint tenant dies. Their share of the property is distributed among the remaining owners. Those owners will need a survivorship application registered to reflect the ownership change. Susan, the surviving spouse in our example, would apply to have Michael's name removed from the property title, showing her as the sole owner.
Survivorship applications are a speedy process. Unlike probating a will, which can take months or sometimes years, the right of survivorship is automatic. An application can be done in just a few days.
What is involved
Now that you know what survivorship applications are, here's how they’re done:
To make the change in ownership official, we can prepare and register a survivorship application for you quickly and efficiently. Simply call us for a free quote, or pop into one of our offices. We will take some basic details and provide you with an all-inclusive quote covering our flat rate legal fee, any third party fees and taxes. There are no hidden fees or extras; your quote is all-inclusive.
You will be asked for an original or certified true copy of the deceased’s death certificate. This can usually be obtained from the funeral home.
Your lawyer will conduct a title search, explain and have you sign the documents and register your survivorship application.
Finally, your lawyer will contact government agencies to advise them of the change. That will ensure their records are up to date.
We will walk you through the process from A to Z and keep you up to date via email and phone. We will set a date with you for you to come into one of our conveniently located offices to sign documents or we can send someone to meet with you at your home or office. We’re open 7 days a week with long hours, so you can choose a time that works with your schedule.