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Thomas
Thomas, Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7602
Experience:  UK solicitor
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Hi, I have a mortgage in joint names with an ex partner who

Resolved Question:

Hi, I have a mortgage in joint names with an ex partner who left the home 5 years ago. I want to sell the property and would like to know what legal rights the other person has even though they have not contributed to the mortgage or the property since leaving?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi

Thanks for your question.

Are they available to sign the sale contract and do they consent to the sale?

Kind regards


Tom
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

They are available. They do consent but want a portion of the equity once sold. Originally when they left they asked for 5k for their name to be removed from the mortgage but now because I want to sell they want more money.


 


 

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Thanks for your reply.

Did you jointly execute a declaration of trust for the property stating your perspective percentage interests in the property?

If so, what did this state.

Kind regards,


Tom
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Tom,


 


No we did not do this. No such declaration was made.


 


Anna

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi Anna,

Thanks for your reply. Drafting your answer now. 5 mins please.

Kind regards,


Tom
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks Tom.

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.

Hi

Thank you for your question and patience, I’m Tom and I’ll try to help you.

First of all, if you and you partner presently hold the house jointly (as joint tenants) then each person's share would pass to the other upon death regardless of any directon made in any Will. If this is not what you want then you should sever the joint tenancy by using Form SEV from the Land Registry (you will have to send it to them and if you have any questions about completing the form you should call their customer service number - they are very helpful):-
http://www1.landregistry.gov.uk/publications/?pubtype=49


You will then hold you interests as tenants in common, meaning that your respective shares will pass according to their wills or under the intestacy rules. Your partner need not sign the form provided you follow the instructions.

unless there is a declaration of trust (for which you must hold your property as tenants in common) then there is a presumption that each party retains a 50% interest in the equity in the property .A declaration of trust (had you executed one) would state that you hold your interests in the properties in specified percentage shares and it could also say that each person only retains their 50% interest in the property subject to equal contributions to the relevant outgoings for the property.

It is possible to claim greater than 50% of the equity in the property by litigating under the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act if it can be shown that you intended to keep your finances separate and it would be inequitable for a 50% interest to be enforce, but this is a very specialised area of law and the legal fees are very expensive. Contributing to the mortgage repayments is the type of thing that can form the basis of a claim in this regard though.

I would consider having a consultation with a local property solicitor on a fixed-fee basis for them to take your specific instructions as to the valuation, amounts you contributed and the amounts that you have paid since he left and then ask for an opinion on the likelihood of success in claiming versus a risk/benefit analysis considering the fees you would have to pay. Thereafter you can enter in to informal negotiations then review once you have firmed up your partner’s position


My goal is to provide you with a good service. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up issues specifically relating to your question.


Kind regards,


Tom
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