You may take great pride in providing for your spouse during your lifetime. However, ensuring you protect them after you pass is just as essential! If your spouse is not on the deed to your home and you’re worried about what will happen to your property upon your passing, this blog explores what you must know. Keep reading to discover the steps you can take to protect your spouse with the help of an experienced Washtenaw County estate planning attorney.

If My Spouse Is Not on the Deed to My Home, Who Inherits It Upon My Death?

When you pass away, understanding what will happen to your property is essential. If your spouse’s name is not on the deed, it could create issues, especially if you do not have an estate plan in place to grant them ownership of your marital home.

In Michigan, when someone dies without a will, their estate becomes intestate. As such, it is left to the state to determine who will receive their assets. If you and your spouse have no children, your spouse will inherit everything, including your home. In the event you and your spouse have shared children, your spouse will inherit the first $150,000 of the estate and half of the remaining balance, while your children inherit the remainder. If you are married and have children with someone other than your current spouse, your spouse will receive the first $100,000 and half the remaining balance, while your children inherit the rest.

What Can I Do to Protect My Spouse?

Because your home is part of the estate, it could be divided between your spouse and children. As such, taking the time to plan your estate to ensure your spouse can receive your shared home is crucial.

One thing many rely on is their will. As such, you may want to grant your spouse full ownership of the property in this document, which is a straightforward option with tax advantages. However, you may find that your estate can go through the probate process despite having an estate plan in place. Because it can go through probate, the home can be subject to a property lien.

As such, many instead choose to create a survivorship deed. This will transfer property to your spouse upon your death. However, this subjects your property to any debt your spouse may have. Another alternative is to establish a transfer-on-death deed, which is a less permanent option. You can revoke this deed without the permission of the named beneficiary.

If you’re worried about the future, Collis, Griffor & Hendra can help. We understand how important peace of mind is, so we’re dedicated to helping you plan your estate. Contact us today to explore your options.

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