Fall 2011Issue 13
Prestige Title Agency, Inc.

Prestige Title eNews

Fall 2011 

RCandRPImpact of the Marriage Equality Act on

Title Insurance 

 

On July 24, 2011, the Marriage Equality Act was signed into law, making New York the sixth state to allow same-sex marriages. While the Act affects a wide range of issues, such as spousal support, insurance coverage and health care, this article will focus on the effect of the Act on areas related to title insurance.

 

Real Property: Ownership Interests

 

As of July 24, 2011, same-sex couples may now hold title as tenants by the entirety. To create the tenancy by the entirety, a deed should specify that the parties are taking title as tenant by the entirety, or as married persons. However, New York presumes that a deed that is conveyed to two individuals without stating the manner in which they are taking title will take as tenants by the entirety if they are in fact married at the time of the conveyance. Couples who own property but who are not married take title as tenants in common, and their subsequent marriage will not alter the manner in which they hold title.

 

Since the act is not retroactive in effect, same sex couples who acquired title prior to July 24, 2011 may want to consider recording a deed to change their ownership to a tenancy by the entirety. A change from a tenancy in common to a tenancy by the entirety will give each spouse survivorship rights. Upon the death of one spouse, the surviving spouse becomes the sole owner of the premises. Couples who held as joint tenants, and who therefore have survivorship rights, may want to convert their ownership to a tenancy by the entirety to take advantage of creditor protection rights unique to a tenancy by the entirety. Specifically, a tenancy by the entirety provides some protection for a judgment that is enforceable against only one of the spouses. In the event of enforcement, the interest of the debtor spouse can be sold under execution. However, the purchaser of that interest is only entitled to a share in the rents and profits, and is not entitled to occupancy of the premises. Furthermore, in the event that the debtor spouse does not survive the non-debtor spouse, the creditor's interest in the premises is extinguished, and the non-debtor spouse becomes the sole owner of the property.

  

 

If you have any questions or would like further information regarding any of the articles in this newsletter, please contact Keith Eng, Esq. at (212) 651-1200 or keng@prestitle.com.  
 
Also, if there are any topics that you would like us to include in future newsletters, please feel free to e-mail us with suggestions at info@prestitle.com   

 

In This Issue
Announcements
Did you know that Prestige Title handles Commercial transactions nationwide?
 
Please contact Anthony Chiellino for further details at (212) 651-1200 or achiellino@prestitle.com.

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AddltAdditional Items of Interest

New York to Allow Electronic Recording of Real Property Instruments - Click Here

 

 

Filed UCCs No Longer to be Returned - Click Here 
 

 
If you have any questions or would like further information regarding any of the articles in this newsletter, please contact Keith Eng, Esq. at (212) 651-1200 or keng@prestitle.com.   
 
Also, if there are any topics that you would like us to include in future newsletters, please feel free to e-mail us with suggestions at info@prestitle.com.    
 
 
Prestige Title Agency, Inc. provides Commercial and Residential Title Services Nationwide. For more information, please contact Anthony Chiellino at (212) 651-1200 or achiellino@prestitle.com
 
 
15 W. 39th St. 10th Fl. New York, NY 10018 Tel (212) 651-1200 Fax (212) 651-1201
Member of New York State Land Title Association Member of American Land Title Association