What is heirs’ property?

Coastal regions of the Southeastern United States contain a substantial amount of real property currently owned by African Americans whose ancestors obtained title to the property both before and after the Civil War. Much of this property was passed down through generations by intestacy (passing away without a will) – so the land became “Heirs’ Property” owned by descendants of an original property owner.

Accordingly, Heirs’ Property is land owned “in common” (title is held by heirs as “tenants in common”) regardless of whether they live on the land, pay property taxes, reside or even set foot on the land. All heirs’ property owners are related in some way by blood, marriage or adoption.

The Heirs Property Law Firm, LLC, focuses its efforts on Heirs’ Property primarily located in coastal regions of the four states comprising the Gullah/Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor

1. Florida
2. Georgia
3. South Carolina
4. North Carolina

Every heir having an heirs’ property ownership interest in the property has the right to use the property as a whole, and that causes a big problem. For instance:  how can as many as 100 people in a family spanning several generations live on 5 acres of land in a location where the zoning allows only 4 units per acre? The answer is: “They can’t.”

Sometimes heirs’ property owners don’t even know they have an ownership interest in the property. In the tax records it will usually read: “Owned by the heir’s of the patriarch of your family,” without listing individual heirs. It’s the position of the tax office that it’s not their responsibility to manage your late great-great grandparent’s affairs.

What do I do as an heirs property owner?  Where do I start?  What is the cost?

By visiting our website, you have already started the process of clearing title to the property in which you may have an interest. Our attorneys and staff at the Heirs’ Property Law Firm, LLC, will fight for your Heirs’ Property ownership rights. After many years of working with heirs’ property, it has become apparent to courts, attorneys, appraisers, realtors and other professionals, that the difficult process of obtaining a clear title to Heirs’ Property can become a long and expensive process. For example, you should reasonably expect it to take an average of 22% of total value of the property to clear title. After the title is cleared in a legal process known as a”quiet title action,” separate ownership interests may be partitioned and held by the interested family members, transferred to individual family members, or sold in whole or in part to buyers of the property from outside of the family.