While “co-ownership” may be confusing, I hope this information has dispelled some misunderstandings and will make things easier for you and your family. Talk to your estate planning advisor and financial advisor to make sure your accounts and assets are properly titled and that you have the estate planning documents. However, the Community Convention on Property is not fair to all. It does not work well for couples who have an estate subject to inheritance tax (for 2017, these are reductions of more than $2.129 million for inheritance tax purposes in Washington and $5.49 million for federal inheritance tax). It also does not work if the couple plans to implement specific creditor protection strategies in the succession plan. And because there is necessarily all the assets to the surviving spouse, it does not work where the plan is not to give all the property to the surviving spouse. For example, if a person has sketched out certain gifts to the children or if the couple has a mixed family (think of the second marriage with “theirs,” “sie” and “our”) and wants to preserve the interests of biological children in their inheritance, then the Community Property Agreement cannot work best. But for the average couple who simply want all the survivors` assets to leave, the community ownership agreement might be appropriate. The Washington law allows spouses to enter into agreements on the character of their property.
The common property can be changed to separate ownership. Separate serums can be changed to common ownership. RCW 26.16.120. A communal property contract converts only separate property into common property; there is no property to anyone. The expectation is that the entire condominium will be automatically handed over to the surviving spouse or domestic partner according to the laws of parentage and distribution in the intestinal layer. Unlike a more flexible will, a community ownership agreement cannot be used to make binding gifts to persons other than the surviving spouse or surviving national partners.