Owning a parcel of real estate or other property with one or more co-owners is fine as long as all of the owners are happy in that situation. When one person becomes unhappy, however, or simply wants to liquidate the asset, there are basically two ways out – either by agreement between the owners or by court partition.
Why do people own property together in the first place?
Besides marriage, there are many ways people become co-owners of property. Business partners may agree to buy property together, such as investment or vacation property. Unmarried couples may choose to buy property jointly. But the most frequent reason people find themselves as co-owners of property is because they inherited the property, along with other relatives.
What is a court partition?
A partition action is essentially a lawsuit filed by one owner against the other co-owners and the property itself to resolve a dispute as to how the property should be divided. If the co-owners agree to divide the property, but can’t buy the portion belonging to the person who wants out, the court may order the property to be sold.
When the jointly-owned property is undeveloped land, a fair division among the owners may be possible. A building on the other hand, such as a house, is not so easily divided. A sale may be necessary to give each co-owner a fair share.
Partition actions may involve real estate or any type of personal property owned by more than one person, as long as the matter is not otherwise governed by family law, such as in a marital property scenario.
Who can file a partition action?
Any co-owner has the right to file a partition action. A person who owns even a tiny fraction of joint property has standing to ask the court to divide the property or order a sale of the property to fairly divide the proceeds.
Contact a skilled real estate litigation attorney
If you are in a volatile joint ownership situation or simply need to liquidate your ownership interest in a jointly-owned asset, contact one of our experienced litigation attorneys at Peterson Law Group. Our Bryan-College Station, Texas property attorneys are prepared to defend your rights. Call Peterson Law Group today to arrange an appointment at 979-703-7014 or fill out our online contact form.