Joint Tenancy With Right of Survivorship

Summer 2010 CSANews Issue 75  |  Posted date : Jul 20, 2010.Back to list

Dear Bird Talk,

Re: Joint tenancy with right of survivorship

My wife and I purchased a condo in Florida approximately 20 years ago. The deed indicated that both of us are "grantees" (purchasers) and also specifies that we are husband and wife.

We have been told by an attorney (who is also an acquaintance) that the fact that the deed lists us as husband and wife qualifies as "joint tenancy with right of survivorship" and that if one of us passes away, the ownership of the condo could be transferred to the survivor without having to go through probate in Florida.

Because the probate process in Florida takes so long and is costly (as I learned from reading Bird Talk), I would really appreciate your comments as to whether the information given to us is correct. If it is not correct, would you suggest what we need to do in order to have the deed changed to qualify as "joint tenancy with right of survivorship?"

D. Bell
Quebec

Response:
Ed: The information from the attorney is correct - the property would go to the survivor of the husband and wife. In Florida, the manner of a husband and wife holding property together is called 'tenancy by the entireties' and, upon death of one, the property goes to the survivor. There would be no need for probate and you do not need to do anything.