Consenting Adults & Married Couple’s Homestead

It takes two consenting adults to sell the homestead property of a married couple—the husband and the wife—even if only one name is on the deed. Regardless of whether or not your wife’s name is on the deed of your primary residence, she has to give her consent to sell the property.  You cannot sell your house to surprise her with an RV.  You have to get your wife’s permission to sell the house that she lives in. Even if you bought the house before you ever met her, put only your own money into it…your house is roped in when you tie the knot. You also cannot will your homestead to your kids and kick your wife out upon your demise.  You may be married till death do you part, but your wife is not going anywhere you die unless she wants to. Tenancy by Entirety includes the unities of Joint Tenancy with Rights of Survivorship plus the Unity of Marriage, which subscribes to the legal fiction that husband and wife are one entity.  As long as the marriage is intact, neither can break the tenancy nor otherwise convey the property.  However, upon the dissolution of the marriage, the […] Read More

People’s Law School – April 22: ‘Should You Ever Put Someone Else’s Name on Your Deed?’

The People’s Law School is in session again with its series of legal lectures presented by St. Johns County Legal Aid.  The April 22nd topic is “Should You Ever Put Someone Else’s Name on Your Deed?”  This FREE one-hour class starts at 4:00 p.m. at the Southeast Branch Library (6670 US 1 South, St. Augustine, Florida). The remaining spring schedule for the People’s Law School has one more class as follows: May 13 – Do You Need a Will?  What If You Die Without One? All classes are free and start at 4:00 p.m. at the Southeast Branch Library.  For more information on St. Johns County Legal Aid and their services, go to www.jaxlegalaid.org. Read More

Doc Stamps

What are “Doc Stamps”?  Simply stated, Doc Stamps—or Documentary Stamps—are taxes.  Different states have different taxes; in Florida, we have Documentary Stamps on Real Estate Deeds and Notes.  The tax rate for deeds is $0.70 per $100 of the total consideration paid, or to be paid, for the transfer.  The tax rate on title loans is $0.35 per $100 of the obligation.  Note:  Even if you are buying land in California, but you sign the deed in Florida, you pay Doc Stamps.   Read More