My grandmother is the sole owner of 40 acres of land. Her will states that it will be divided between her children, my aunt and my dad, upon her death. My father died a few years ago, and my grandfather last year. I have been living on the property for 3 years now, paying bills and assisting in paying the insurance and taxes on the land. In that time, I got married. My husband and I would like to stay on the family land and my grandma is overjoyed. We have plans that include building a house and starting a small business which would be housed, at least initially, on the land. She is so happy that she is talking about deeding the land directly to me soon instead of passing it on after she dies, and my aunt is supportive-I don't think she wants the hassle. Her only stipulation is that it would go directly to me and not my husband, which he understands. She offered the land to each of my siblings to caretake before me, but I was the only one to accept and move to the property. Now my siblings want to be named on the deed as well, and have some level of control. My concern is that if something happens to me and my husband has built his life here, what assurance does he have of not getting thrown out in the street? Is there a good solution to make everyone happy here?

  • This will depend on where the land is, and also whether you have any prenuptial agreement with your husband (and if so, what that says). – Greendrake May 18 '20 at 3:52
  • 1
    Whether your siblings should be on the deed is for you and your grandmother to decide - if she wants to deed the land to you, she can do that and completely cut your siblings out (in most jurisdictions - some, like France, are odd, so the other commenters point about where you are is valid here). So when your grandmother deeds you something, you make a will and in it you leave your land to your husband. – Moo May 18 '20 at 4:12
  • What jurisdiction(e.g. country/state) is the land in? Note that with regards to your husband, it is possible that he may gain legal protections as a resident or tenant that may prevent him from being immediately "thrown out in the street". – sharur May 18 '20 at 4:54

Unfortunately, there is the law answer, and there is the family answer.

The law answer is fairly straightforward - she deeds the land to you, and you leave it your husband if you precede him in death.

The family answer is different. Many families have been torn asunder by inheritance issues. Your siblings seem to think they deserve a share, which is problematic if you are building there. Your choices are to split the land but buy your siblings out, establish a long-term structure lease on the land, or take the land and deal with sibling fallout. There may be other options an estate lawyer can recommend. Note that if your siblings are co-owners, then soon there will be many more as their children inherit.

You need a local lawyer to do any of the above.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.