Milwaukee, WI asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin

Q: Wisc home deed lists husband and wife grantee what happens upon death of spouse? What should it say to pass to survivor?

No mortgage

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1 Lawyer Answer
Thomas B. Burton
Thomas B. Burton
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Eau Claire, WI
  • Licensed in Wisconsin

A: Hello, if you want the property to pass to the surviving spouse non-probate upon the death of the first spouse, you can title the property as "John Smith and Jane Smith, husband and wife as survivorship marital property" for example. "survivorship marital property" is the key phrase used in Wisconsin on the deed to reflect this type of ownership.

There is more information about this in Wis. Stat. 766.60(5). Excerpt below:


(a) If the words “survivorship marital property" are used instead of the words “marital property" in the form described in sub. (1) or (2), the marital property so held is survivorship marital property. On the death of a spouse, the ownership rights of that spouse in the property vest solely in the surviving spouse by nontestamentary disposition at death. The first deceased spouse may not dispose at death of any interest in survivorship marital property. Holding marital property in a form described in sub. (1) or (2) does not alone establish survivorship ownership between the spouses with respect to the property held.

You can view the entire statute here I would discuss your options with your estate planning attorney before proceeding. Hope this helps.

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