Tenants in common, Deed of trust for share of sale proceedings only, one tenant in common dies

Hi to all, 

I have a very weird situation:

Two people purchased property as Tenants in Common (lets call them Person A and Person B).
Person A put all deposit and was paying all of the mortgage since 2006. He lived in the property.
It appears that Person B was only on Deeds to help Person A get the mortgage, which was taken in both names, jointly and severally.
A Deed of Trust has been signed. The Deed does not state ownership percentage nor how any potential benefit from the property is shared. What the deed states is:
  • that all of the deposit, stamp duty and all other purchase disbursements were paid by Person A
  • that Person A and Person B charged the property with a mortgage of £££ in favour of bank yyy
  • that it was agreed that should the property be sold at some time in the future, upon redeeming mortgage and selling and legal fees and disbursements, the proceeds of sale are to be paid as 99% to Person A and1% to Person B 
In 2012 Person A dies intestate. He only has wife therefore she would get all of his estate.

The bank, when notified of Person A death, asks Person B to start paying the mortgage instead, which he did.

  1. What happens with the property ownership? Who owns how much? Is the estate owning 99% or is the estate owning 50% but when sold, gets 99% of proceedings (since Deed does not say how much of the property is owned by each tenant in common)

  2. Person B told the widow of Person A that she must leave the property as he is now the only legal owner. Is this correct?

  3. Can the widow of Person A force Person B to sell (either on the open market or to her?)  She is happy to re-imburse Person B for the mortgage he paid for the last 10 months at the time of sale

  4. Person B thinks that the widow of Person A does not have a copy of the Deed that stipulates the proceed of sale percentage and was firstly asking for 50% and then for the whole house as he said he is the only legal owner. He is refusing to sign release of the Deed document from Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) since all parties that are on the document must sign for the release (since she asked for the document release, he believes she does not have the copy of the deed, but she did find it in a meantime, he does not know yet) 
I believe the estate owns the property. Can estate force the sale of the whole property (force Person B to sell his 1% without going to court) as I cannot see how anybody could sell 99% of the property on the open market. 

What are other options? What if she stays in the house whilst Person B keeps paying mortgage - what if this situation continues for months or even years? Does this give Person B any more rights to sale proceeding or he will always be limited to his 1% as per deed?

Thank you everybody for reading, any advice appreciated! 


  • Jane4646
    Jane4646 Posts: 5
    First Post First Anniversary
    Sorry, do not know how to edit my post above. The Person A died intestate at the end of  2022 (and not 2012). So the Person B has been paying the mortgage since beginning of 2023
  • elsien
    elsien Posts: 32,275
    Name Dropper Photogenic First Anniversary First Post
    Person A needs to get proper legal advice.
    Not sure why if they were tenants in common person B now thinks they own the whole property. Have you checked to see what the land registry is showing and entered A property alert, so you get notification if anyone tries to sell? 
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
  • housebuyer143
    housebuyer143 Posts: 3,168
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Assuming you have actual tenants in common then person B has no right to sell without the agreement of person A beneficiary. If person B wants to sell then person A needs to facilitate this - they can't sell it from under them. If you don't want to muddy the share then I think you should stop person B paying the mortgage asap. 
    Proper legal advice is needed.
  • GrumpyDil
    GrumpyDil Posts: 1,565
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    OP has now posted a number of scenarios with differing levels of detail. I'm starting to wonder if these are exam/learning questions. 
  • Jane4646
    Jane4646 Posts: 5
    First Post First Anniversary
    No they are not exam / learning question. It is the true situation where Person A husband died and Person B marched into the property and said he is now the only the legal owner and she should leave. 

    The wife of the Person A offered to pay back every month what he is paying for the mortgage but Person B refused and keeps now paying the mortgage (for 10 months already) and keeps saying the house is now his.

    The Person B also did not want to sign the release of the documents from Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), where one of documents is the TiC Deed of Trust despite the wife producing Letters of Administration (SRA said the other party has to sign to release the doc). Fortunately the wife found her copy of the Deed of Trust between PersA and PersB amongst late PersA papers few days ago. PersB does not know she has found her copy, PersB thinks she cannot get it as he refuses the release of documents from SRA (original lawyer went bust).

    This is why I would like to know is there any way that PersB can sell the property without PersA. I read on one of thread that although there is a TiC clause on the title deed, when the PersA name is removed and PersB became the sole owner, that PersB can nominate ANY other person to be the other trustee and sell the house and pocket the money. Of course you would need another dishonest person to be nominated as trustees.

    So my question is - can PersB steal the property that way. Or can PersB legally get PersA out of the house, put the tenants in, pocket the whole rent and refuse to sell.

    Regarding the shares, there is no mention on how beneficial ownership is split. The Deed of Trust is very short, here is all of it:

    THIS DEED OF TRUST is made on dd/mm/2006
    BETWEEN PersonA of the one part and PersonB of the other part, both of PropertyAddress
    By transfer dated dd/mm/2006 and made between PropertySeller of the one part and PersonA and PersonB of the above part the Freehold property situated at and know as PropertyAddress (herein called 'the property') was transferred to the parties hereto in the consideration of the sum of £££,£££  (the 'Purchase Price') and registered at HM Land Registry under Title Number NNNNN as the Beneficial Owners.

    By Legal Charge of even date PersonA and PersonB charged the property with a mortgage in favour of TheBank in the sum of £££,£££ borrowed by them from the said Society with the interest thereon at the rate and by the instalments and subject to the terms and conditions therein set forth.

    The balance of the purchase monies were made up as to the sum of ££,£££ representing the deposit paid upon exchange of contracts, stamp duty and other disbursements paid by PersonA and both parties acknowledge the same.

    It is agreed that should the property be sold at some time in the future and upon redeeming the mortgage and settlin the estate agents account and legal fees and disbursements the proceeds are to be paid as to NINTY-NINE PERCENTUM (99%) to PersonA and ONE PERCENTUM (1%) for PersonB.

    IN THE WITNESS WHEREOF the parties hereunto set their hands the day and year first before written
    SIGNED AS A DEED PersonA in the presence of (witness signature and address)
    SIGNED AS DEED PersonB in the presence of  (witness signature and address)

    PersonA paid mortgage from 2006 until his death (and it got paid by DD from his account for a few months after his death). PersonB got notified by the bank he now has to pay the mortgage, and he does not want to accept reimbursements from PersonA wife/estateAdministrator, firstly says he wants to buy her out by paying for 50% of the house and few months later says he is now the only legal owner of the house and she must leave. And does not want  to sign for the release of purchase documentation etc papers from SRA.

    From what I can see from the above deed, the deed does not specify that PersonB will get any more of the house sale if he pays the rest of the mortgage as the sale proceeds are defined 99% / 1%.

    But can he steal the house somehow by appointing another unrelated trustee ?
    And what happens if he himself refuses to sell his 1%? Can he stop PersA beneficiary to sell the property and can he ask her to pay him rent?

    Sorry, it is a nightmare and any advice would be appreciated.  PersonA has probate lawyer but PersonA wants to understand her risks if PersonB is not honest. 
  • GrumpyDil
    GrumpyDil Posts: 1,565
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    In all honesty, given this is not an entirely straightforward situation I would be asking the probate solicitor for their view as they have access to the full facts. 
Meet your Ambassadors


  • All Categories
  • 341.8K Banking & Borrowing
  • 249.7K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.2K Spending & Discounts
  • 233.9K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 606.1K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.5K Life & Family
  • 246.8K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.8K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards