Q: My partner and I are buying a property together. If I die, will my partner receive my share?
A. This depends on how the property is owned. When you purchase the property, your solicitor will ask whether you wish to co-own as joint tenants or tenants in common.
If you are joint tenants, you are treated legally as one owner. When one party dies, their half of the property passes automatically to the other party.
Tenants in common own separate, distinct shares. This will usually be 50:50, but you can specify if you wish to own different sized shares. When you die, your share in the property will not pass to your partner automatically, but will instead form part of your estate and pass according to your will or the intestacy rules if you do not have a valid will (a good reason to make a will).
*Previously printed in the Stamford Mercury