Home Ownership & Same Sex Couples

Florida is a wonderful state to live in and the lifestyle is generally agreeable so it's understandable why people, including same sex couples, set their eyes on the Sunshine State when looking for their first home.

same sex couplesCertain advancements in legislation regarding same sex couples gave members of the LGBT community in Florida something to cheer for. But the question is: Will same sex couples have something to look forward to regarding their rights in home ownership?

Unfortunately, that's a big, resounding NO. It would take some more time before the high court's marriage ruling would find its way to real estate law. However, there are ways to work around this.

Usually, when a married couple buys a home, they do so as Tenants by the Entireties . This is a legal status of ownership that grants certain privileges to both spouses. An example of this is when one spouse dies the other would automatically own the property alone.

Now it's been mentioned earlier that gay couples are not allowed by law to acquire real estate property as Tenants by the Entireties in Florida. However, a similar set of rights can be created, similar to the ones unmarried couples take advantage of, when buying property together.

Basically, they can enter into a legal agreement which delineates the ownership and management of the house when it comes to finances. The agreement also specifies what would happen to the home in case the relationship sours or in the event of the partner's death. Certain types of trusts can even provide for the protection from creditors.

All in all, while the Tenants by the Entireties structure is not available to same sex couples in Florida, they can still avail of the same legal protections as long as they plan properly.

If you're a gay couple wanting to know more about your home and legal options, contact Lanham and Associates, Inc. now!

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