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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
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    1

    Question Remainderman and Life Tenancy Rights

    My question involves real estate located in the State of: Illinois

    My Aunt owns a home in Illinois as her primary residence. About 3 years ago she placed my brother and myself on the deed as remaindermen, and designated herself as the life tenant. She is now 90 yrs. old and in not the best health. About 9 months ago she decided to move out of the house and into an assisted living facility. The property has been empty since she left. She now wants to sell the property to supplement her assisted living costs. Does she have that right? I feel that selling would be complicated, and damage the benefits of the way she has set up the Deed. Instead, I think she, as the life tenant, should rent out the property and use that money. My brother is passive on the matter, but generally sides with my Aunt on selling. What direction, selling or renting, can be legally pursued? Are there other viable options?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    19,889

    Default Re: Remainderman and Life Tenancy Rights

    Your terminology is imprecise with 'added to the deed.'. If she deeded the property to you and your brother and retained a life tenancy, then she can't sell it. She can rent it out or otherwise use it while she remains alive if she chooses not to live in it. On the other hand, even if you and your brother agreed to sell the property (which is your right), it would still be subject to her life tenancy unless she voluntarily gives that up.

    What you and your brother and your aunt should be doing is talking to an attorney about what makes sense for her and you. Understand, that she may have already made serious errors in deeding property to you to begin with.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    16,441

    Default Re: Remainderman and Life Tenancy Rights

    Quote Quoting rrgrassel
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    My question involves real estate located in the State of: Illinois

    My Aunt owns a home in Illinois as her primary residence. About 3 years ago she placed my brother and myself on the deed as remaindermen, and designated herself as the life tenant. She is now 90 yrs. old and in not the best health. About 9 months ago she decided to move out of the house and into an assisted living facility. The property has been empty since she left. She now wants to sell the property to supplement her assisted living costs. Does she have that right? I feel that selling would be complicated, and damage the benefits of the way she has set up the Deed. Instead, I think she, as the life tenant, should rent out the property and use that money. My brother is passive on the matter, but generally sides with my Aunt on selling. What direction, selling or renting, can be legally pursued? Are there other viable options?
    The reality of things is that your aunt should never have deeded the house to you and your sibling and should have retained full ownership herself. Her assets should have remained available for her to fund her own living needs.

    Morally, those assets should remain available for her to fund her living needs. The fact that you appear to want to deny her that is morally reprehensible.

    You should of course make sure that any tax consequences of selling are handled, but otherwise, the right thing to do would be to make sure that your aunt's living comfort is met and that any benefit that you might receive is completely after the fact.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
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    2,730

    Default Re: Remainderman and Life Tenancy Rights

    Quote Quoting rrgrassel
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    She now wants to sell the property. . . . Does she have that right?
    No.


    Quote Quoting rrgrassel
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    I feel that selling would be complicated
    How do you figure?


    Quote Quoting rrgrassel
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    and damage the benefits of the way she has set up the Deed.
    Well...of course that's true. However, as noted previously, your aunt has no right to sell the home. If she can find a willing buyer, she may be able to seller her life tenant interest, but she cannot sell the home unless you and your brother agree to it. You are, of course, free not to agree or to condition your agreement on some sort of financial benefit. And, of course, this illustrates why it was incredibly foolish of your aunt to set up the life estate in the first place.


    Quote Quoting rrgrassel
    View Post
    What direction, selling or renting, can be legally pursued? Are there other viable options?
    She can rent the property if she wants, but I doubt a 90 year old woman has any interest in being a landlord. As mentioned, she may be able to sell her interest as a life tenant if she can find a willing buyer (which she likely cannot). If she wants to sell, she'll need you and your brother to cooperate.

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