Property Ownership Issues that Concern Married Couples

What is it?

The way that you as a married couple structure the ownership of your real or personal property is an important step in the financial planning of your future together. Whether you own a piece of real estate or a checking/savings account, the method of property ownership you choose can affect future sales of that property, divorce proceedings, or the distributions of an estate upon your death. If you live in a state that follows the traditional system of property ownership, you and your spouse can choose to either own property jointly or retain sole ownership of the property. If you and your spouse live in a community property state, both you and your spouse share equally any income earned and property that is acquired during marriage.

Caution: If you are a same-sex married couple, property ownership issues may be more complicated if you live in a state in which your marriage is legally recognized, but own property in a state that does not recognize same-sex marriage.

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