Law Office James Palmisano
417 Barre Street
Montpelier, Vermont 05602
Phone: (800) 585-3169
Phone: (802) 229-4001
Fax: (802) 229-2733

How to hold title to property?

If you are buying property with another person, you will have the option of owning the property as joint tenants with right of survivorship or as tenants in common.

Tenancy in Common means that the owners each hold a separate interest in the property and they may designate in their Will who receives their share upon their death.  Thus, a deceased owner's title passes to the beneficiaries named in his or her Will upon death.  If there is no will, it’s up to state law.

Joint Tenancy is a form of ownership where title automatically passes to the surviving joint owners when one owner dies.  Thus, if there are two owners and one of them dies, the surviving owner becomes sole owner of the property without having to do anything.  One joint owner cannot leave his or her interest to someone else under their Will and the property will not be included in a deceased owner’s estate.

Tenancy by the Entirety is a form of ownership between married couples.  It has the same characteristics as joint tenancy plus the additional characteristic of protecting the property from individual creditors of one spouse. Only creditors of both spouses can encumber property held as tenants by the entirety.