What does a life estate mean?
In common law and statutory law, a life estate (or life tenancy) is the ownership of land for the duration of a person’s life.
In legal terms, it is an estate in real property that ends at death when ownership of the property may revert to the original owner, or it may pass to another person.
What are the benefits of a life estate?
Benefits of a Life Estate
- The right to live in the home until death;
- Maintaining a $250,000 capital gains exclusion provided you resided in the home two (2) of the last five (5) years;
- The right to keep a portion of the sale proceeds of the house if it is later sold;
- The right to rental income;
12 Jun 2012
Can a person with a life estate sell the property?
Answer: Someone with a life estate has a right to the use of the asset in which she or he has a life estate for her or his life. Although the life tenant can sell the life estate, the buyer would have ownership rights only as long as the original life tenant lived. A remainder interest may also be sold.
What happens to a life estate after the person dies?
A life estate allows lifetime use of a home before it passes to the final beneficiaries. A “life estate” occurs when a person has a legal right to use property during life, but does not own the property outright. After the death of the life tenant, the property passes to the named beneficiaries, called “remaindermen.”