Same Sex Marriages and Real Estate Contracts

2015’s Supreme Court ruling legalizing same sex marriage has a direct effect on real estate contracts, ownership and homestead rights. As always, it is vitally important that agents inquire about marital status when working with potential clients.

The US Supreme Court’s decision requiring all states to recognize and perform same sex marriages has far-reaching effects, including implications on how real estate is contracted for, owned and conveyed. Now, newly married spouses of the same sex, whether married in Texas or another state, are entitled to all of the rights, benefits and privileges of traditional marriages prior to the decision. Thus, in contracting for and owning real estate, Texas common law rules of homestead, community property, inheritance and divorce are applicable and must be accounted for.

In signing listing agreements, contracts, loans and deeds on homestead property, both spouses must join, even if the property was owned solely by one spouse prior to their marriage. And if the couple subsequently divorces, or one spouse dies without a will, an analysis of community property vs navigate to this site. separate property must be made to determine rightful ownership.

The act of marriage, regardless of gender, has profound legal consequences on real estate ownership. Agents assisting clients must have a clear understanding of a couple’s legal relationship in order to structure a transaction correctly.

Contact Rattikin & Rattikin, LLP

Jeffrey A. Rattikin is an AV Pre-eminent rated attorney, Board -Certified in Residential Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.  Mr. Rattikin has provided transactional legal services to clients across the State of Texas for over 28 years, emphasizing real estate, business and title law.  Mr. Rattikin continues to define new legal frontiers through his incorporation of technology to enhance the attorney-client experience, as evidenced by his firm’s innovative websites and