MARYLAND PARTITION LAW

How to File a Partition lawsuit in Maryland to Divide Property You Co-Own

In Maryland, if there are more than one owner of a piece of property, and one or more of those owners no longer wishes to own the property or use the property, then that owner has an absolute right to partition the property. A partition is a division of the interest in property. It can be a voluntary partition, where the parties agree to divide the property and negotiate a contract splitting up the asset. This is also sometimes called a sale in lieu of partition in Maryland. The parties can also commence litigation, which is called a judicial partition, and the partition lawsuit can culminate with a Maryland forced partition real estate sale that is ordered by the court.

There are two ways to divide property. A court can either physically carve out a portion of the property for each owner, or the property can be sold at auction and the proceeds can be divided by the co-owners. In Maryland, there are three major types of tenancies, and the tenancy that the parties had in the property will determine how they divide the land or the proceeds. A tenancy in common requires that the land be partitioned according to the percentage share that each party held when they owned the premises. A joint tenancy requires that the parties partition the land in equal shares. A tenancy by the entirety is a marital tenancy that can partition land through divorce proceedings.

Maryland is a lien theory state, which means that any mortgage company or lender has a lien on the property in the amount of the outstanding loan. When the owners seek to partition the property, any outstanding liens on the property must be satisfied before the land can be sold or divided.