Thank you for the letter. As you appreciate, the solicitors only know what their client, Christine, has told them.
The property is in joint names or but she is saying that she paid all the money towards it, GBP26,500 and that your father paid nothing as the relationship ended the following year.
If what they are saying is true, then what they are saying is correct, except to say that whilst your father may have put no money into the property either by way of mortgage payments or deposit, the fact remains that he was at risk of the mortgage if Christine did not pay it. That risk has a value
So assuming that it is agreed that she paid all the money, it’s just a case of deciding how much the value is of your father having remained on the mortgage all those years even though it was paid by her. It’s probably only worth a couple of thousand pounds but that’s going to be cheaper than the argument over it which if it went to court, could easily be 10 grand or 20 grand. What is more important however is whether you accept that she paid all the deposit, whether you have any proof that your father paid anything, and whether she has any proof that she paid it. That would be the general gist of my reply to them.
If the property is in joint names as tenants in common than probate is going to be needed to transfer the property under the terms of your late father’s will or under the terms of their claim.
If it’s joint tenants, it goes automatically to Christine.
What happens to the house depends whether it is held at the land registry as Joint Tenants or Tenants in Common.
I will explain the difference between Joint Tenants and Tenants in Common.
You need the title deed (you don’t need the plan) to the property.
You can get the title deed and the plan quickly and easily by using this link:
and you will have to pay 3 pounds for the title deed and 3 pounds for the plan.
You will then have them in minutes if not seconds.
You will see that it has three sections
A Property Register which describes the property
B the Proprietorship Register which says who owns it
C the Charges Register which gives details of mortgages, leases, restrictive covenants and anything else which affects the property.
Have a look in B Proprietorship Register
You are looking for a restriction along the lines of “No disposition by a sole proprietor et cetera et cetera”
That restriction may or may not be in there. I know it’s rather odd wording.
If the restriction is NOT in there than the property is held as Joint Tenants which means that when one co-owner dies, the deceased persons share passes automatically to the other under the right of survivorship.
Even if there is a will leaving the deceased persons share to someone else, it’s not effective, and the deceased persons share still passes to the survivor, regardless of what the will says.
If the restriction IS in the title deed then the property is held as Tenants in Common which means that when one co-owner dies, the deceased persons share passes in accordance with the terms of their will or, if there is no will, under the Rules of Intestacy.
Thank you for letting me assist you with your legal question. I am glad that I was able to help.
I am not certain whether that answers the question for you or not, but I am happy to answer any specific points arising from this.
It will be my pleasure to help you again either further with this or any future questions you have