Ownership Of Property

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Bert45 | 13:12 Wed 14th Apr 2021 | Law
16 Answers
I successfully did the conveyancing on the purchase of our home over 30 years ago. I followed the advice of a book. The book, so far as I can remember, advised us (my wife and me) to purchase as "Joint Tenants". I forget now why that was considered preferable to "Tenants in Common". One of the documents I have now is headed "Transfer of Whole to Joint Proprietors" naming us. Is "Joint Proprietors" the same as "Joint Tenants"? If they are the same, why do they have two different terms? Is it just so that solicitors can make life more complicated than it needs to be? Now that we are getting to "that age" we have been advised to change our title to "Tenants in Common". I have googled and ended up still confused. Another term has been introduced "Beneficial Joint Tenants". What does that mean? Can you explain in simple terms [words of one syllable preferred :-)] why we should now change to Tenants in Common.


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13:15 Wed 14th Apr 2021
// One of the documents I have now ..//

Sorry can you be a bit clearer. Are you referring to the original conveyancing documents from 30 years ago, or are you trying to change or add someone to the Land Registry deeds?
^^^ ignore that I've read the question properly - I suggest you pay the around £80 fee and get a Qualified Conveyancer to explain the differences and do it for you.
does this help?

The device of converting to Tenants in Common and creating a Trust may assist when it comes to avoiding Care Home fees in respect of your half of the property. However, you should only enter into an arrangement if you and your spouse/partner are entirely comfortable with the situation since there may be difficulties.
also also, as has been said before, if there is any indication that a home owner has made alterations to their affairs in order to avoid care home charges, then the council are entitled to assess as though the changes had not been made.
^^^ This is very ture. It was explained by our Solicitor and we were advised not to change our property into Tenants in Common and we sorted it a different way. I strongly advise you seek help from a Solicitor who specialises in Wills, it may save you a lot of money in the future.
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Thanks, davebro. Yes, it helps. The main thing seems to be avoiding care home fees. But I would still appreciate a confirmation (or not) that Joint Proprietors = Joint Tenants, and where does "Beneficial Joint Tenants" come in? I found this term on a page by LeedsDay Solicitors.
Not a legal eagle! but I think joint proprietors and joint tenants are the same & beneficial joint tenants are the same as joint tenants.

I think they have just expanded on the strictly legal terms.
maybe you would be joint proprietors if you jointly owned a property but it was rented out to a 3rd party who would be the tenant.
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AuntPollyGrey, your reply is interesting. But what do the three arrows at the start mean? (I don't know how to type them.) Also, what does "ture" mean? Is it a typo? You "sorted it a different way". Can you explain that a bit? I realise it might take a page or two if you explained it fully, but perhaps you could give me a link it to something. With regard to "deprivation of assets", what other reason could there be for changing ownership at "that age" than to avoid care home fees?
To simplify the terms Joint proprietorship means the property is owned by more than one person (or business)
Joint proprietorship can take two forms:

Joint Tenancy, or Beneficial Joint Tenants (same thing), meaning the property belongs to you and the other owner or owners jointly. There is no separate distinction between tenants You must all act together as a single owner.
Tenants in Common, means that they have separate and distinct legal shares in the property. These shares may or may not be equal'

"what other reason could there be for changing ownership at "that age""

Issues around Inheritance Tax. With joint tenants the whole of the property would pass to the surviving spouse (and maybe increase the liability to IHT on their estate in due course) but a tenant in common could will their share to someone else or put it into a trust.
^^^ means 'refering to above remark' in a thread

I have loads of typos as I type quickly, and English is not really my first language for typing.

We have a complicated set up re properties and businesses and our Solicitor organised the best way re Inheritance/Capital Gains Tax, potential liabilities for Care Home fees and much more. I can't go into details but it involved Trusts among other things. A few hundred quid spend at a Solicitors really is money well spent.
When property is owned there is the legal title (this relates to in whose name it is registered and who has the power of sale) and there is the beneficial title (this relates to who has the benefit of the property - who the real owners are). More often than not the legal owner and the beneficial owner are the same. Legal title is always a joint tenancy. Beneficial ownership can either be a joint tenancy or a tenancy in common.

A beneficial joint tenancy means that you both own the whole thing - not in shares. When one of you dies, the other automatically inherits the property irrespective of your Wills. If you sever the joint tenancy, you will own the property as tenants in common (otherwise called divided shares) and each of you can leave your one half to whomsoever you like in your Will. Commonly, couples will leave their half to their spouse for their lifetime and on the survivor's death to beneficiaries. This will have the effect of protecting the half of the first to die from care home fees. This is not deprivation of assets and there is nothing the LA can do about a mere severance.

Apologies if this duplicates what has already been said, but I had to nip out and catch next door's dog half way through typing and some responses may not have been there when I started this!
get a conveyancer to do it
this is worse than "I a planning not to have covid vaccine"

if you cant do joint tenants and tenants in common I think you shold leave it to someone else

and or pay for advice and then follow it
[I do not have any trusts - I agree with some lord in equity who said "the time is past for trusts to be suitable for avoiding IHT"

Barmaid is a qc in equity - do as she says
ture looks like true in case anyone is still wondering

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