Pittsburgh Legal Back Talk

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Real Estate: Non-owning Spouse May Not Be Required to Join in the Deed

Posted By Cliff Tuttle | August 13, 2016

No. 1,278

For a very long time, real estate lawyers and title insurance companies have rightly required spouses to join in conveyances of land, even when they clearly do not have an record interest in the property.  The reasons are complex, but they involve rights that spouses may have, sometimes even after divorce.  For example, if a husband pays for improvements or maintenance of a home owned by his wife, he might have a right to equitable distribution in the property.

Nevertheless, a title insurance company may be willing to accept a waiver of spousal rights.  Although this document does not become a part of the public record, the company will retain the waiver in its files and could defend a claim by producing the document.

It doesn’t hurt to ask.

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CLIFF TUTTLE has been a Pennsylvania lawyer for over 40 years and (inter alia) is a real estate litigator and legal writer. The posts in this blog are intended to provide general information about legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus. However, this information does not constitute legal advice and there is no lawyer-client relationship created when you read this blog. You are encouraged to leave comments but be aware that posted comments can be read by others. If you wish to contact me in privacy, please use the Contact Form located immediately below this message. I will reply promptly and in strict confidence.

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