We have property we inherited and now have to deal with possession. 6 cousins own 50% me and my two brothers own 50%. I have lived on the property and managed it meaning the land and rentals since my grandmother passed away, about 15 years. It is 5 acres with some old run down farm houses being rented. I live in the main house with my family. The property has commercial value if annexed to the city. It is county now. The will started out 60/40 but my mom made it 50/50 cause my cousins whined about the 60/40. She wanted to be equal to her nieces and nephews. There half was also subjected to reassessment because they had a generation skip. I have covered all taxes and reassessments for the ranch funds. The main house and the rentals are on one side of the property. Me and my brothers want to keep the half with the houses that I have managed and lived in. The property still has equal main road frontage. What rights do i have; do i have prescriptive rights, adverse possession etc. Me and my brothers are not asking for any money back for taxes, upkeep or the extra 10% my mom gave them. We just want our 50% that is my home and our heritage.
State/Country relating to question: California
Thank you for your question. Be sure to go ahead and bookmark www.nateanswers.com for future questions.Based on what you've asked, I want to make sure I have your question determined precisely. Are you and your brothers just wanting full ownership of the property?
No. we only want our half that we are entitled to. But it is the half with the main house and other rentals.
I still need some clarification. She gave half interest to your and your brothers and half to your cousins. Did she divide it up physically? As in, divide it into two geographical areas and specifically give one half to one group and one half to another?
No she didn't. There was no previsions for that. She is the executor of the trust and passed her shares to me and my brothers.
Okay. So, they are using a part of the property you and your brothers would like to use, and that is the problem?To truly be helpful, I just need more information. Are they presently occupying the areas that you and your brothers want to possess?
No. They are not and have never used any of the property. I have managed all aspects of the property for everyone. We do not want any of their 50% of the land. We just want our half with house i live in and the buildings around it. We are only asking for a certain half of the land.
Right now, everyone owns half of every part of the land. As there isno division of the property in the register of deeds office, the next step is to request the property be divided. You need to petition the court to divide the land as you've described. That petition will be served on the cousins and they will have a chance to respond. If they do not respond, the court will grant your request and the land itself will be legally divided as you request. They may simply just agree to it once served.If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to ask! Please remember to only rate my answer when you are 100% satisfied. IF you feel the need to rate "Poor Service" or "Bad Service", please stop and reply to me via the REPLY TO EXPERT button with the issue you have. I will be happy to continue further and do everything I can to provide you with the service you seek.I am not paid unless I get a rating of 3 to 5 Stars/Smiley Faces. If I have helped you with your question, please give me an appropriate rating so that I get credit for helping you. Thank you, Nate
We care in contact with my cousins. We are all trying to figure it out. Do i have any legal rights to secure the house i live in. I have maintained and ran the property for 15 years. As i asked before, prescriptive rights, adverse possession etc. do i have any legal options to obtain the house and that area of the land. Do i have any leverage on my cousins.
Yes, you do. It would be called an "ouster" and you are well beyond the time frame for adverse possession in California. You can either file a petition for their ouster from that part of the property (or all the property) or file for a partition as I described previously.
Your not getting back to me. You have not answered my main question
I think we just miscommunicated. You do have potential adverse possession rights. When you are adversely possessing against a tenant in common (which is what you have here with your brothers and cousins), it is called an "ouster". It only take five years of outright and notorious possession in California to make that claim. As long as the property taxes have been paid and are current, then you can file to do that.
You should be able to rate now. There ought to be a pop up ratings box you see.
Over 8 years of legal estate experience.
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