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Does my having majority interest afford me any special rights say to sell land develop etc. or do we have to agree on everything? - Unless the property is held in a company (such as an LLC, corporation ,etc...), and you have majority voting rights in that company, no. Merely being a partial owner of the property would not give you any additional rights over him to compel a sale, etc... that he would not agree to.
Can I force division or sale? Would a judge set a fair value for his interest and let me buy him out or is our only option to sell it all? - Yes. This is called a "partition action".
Any co-owner of real property may bring on action against his/her co-owner for partition of the real estate or for sale of the real estate. All persons having an interest in the subject property must be named as parties to the action. KRS 389A.030(1). This would include lessees, mortgagees and other lienholders.
Partition is simply dividing up real property so that a party owning less than a 100% undivided interest in the whole is given 100% ownership of a portion of the whole.
If the property can be divided without materially impairing the value of an interest therein, then partition can be ordered. Partitioning of property is favored, probably because it leaves the property in the hands of the current owners. Woods v. Woods, 418 S.W.2d 757 (Ky. 1967); Traynor v. Traynor, 333 S.W.2d 943 (Ky. 1960).
But, the indivisibility of property will be presumed unless (i) some party raises the issue of partitioning the property and (ii) the court determines that the property is divisible without materially impairing the value of any interest therein. KRS 389A.030(3).
Now partition actions typically are for actual division or sale of the property. You can also start building or developing the property on your own, since you're a partial owner.
But that's subject to dissent by him, and he could likewise develop the property since he's a partial owner.
If that culminates in both of you disagreeing, then that could lead to strife and pretty much require a partition to actually accomplish you purposes.
If it gets to that, you need to contact an attorney in your area that deals with real estate cases. Go to www.lawyers.com or www.legalmatch.com to find an attorney in your area. You should be able to find one that will give you a free initial consultation and better advise you of your rights, any problems with your case, likelihood of success, how courts are treating cases such as yours in your area, and what you should do next.
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