Legally joint ownership of property in the UK falls under three separate headings;
The legal definition of “tenancy” is wider than the common usage definition and includes holding a right in a freehold or leasehold.
Each person’s share in the joint property is automatically passed to the other joint owner on death, this is known as “survivorship”.
Neither joint owner can sell their share without the consent of the other joint owner.
Each joint owner is treated as having equal shares in the property.
Tenancy in Common
Under a tenancy in common, the joint owners share is not necessarily equal, each owner is free to do as they wish with their share and there also is no right of “survivorship”.
This is very common in Scotland and more or less the same as a Tenancy in Common.
A Tenancy in Common allows for more scope for tax planning as it the more flexible type of joint ownership, so for example if you want to alter the split the profits from jointly owned rental properties between spouses then you will need to ensure that the property is held as tenants in common before any other steps are taken.
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