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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: February 9, 2023 01:11 PM
From: Representative Christopher M. Rabb and Rep. Napoleon J. Nelson
To: All House members
Subject: Establishing the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act
When someone dies and does not have an estate plan in place, their real estate is split between the person’s heirs who take ownership of the property as tenants-in-common. This is an unstable form of ownership that all too often results in the heirs losing their land through forced partition sale. This has led to vulnerable families losing millions of dollars of inherited wealth to real-estate speculators.
To address this common hardship, we will be introducing legislation that would provide additional due process protections for heirs to prevent forced sales of inherited property
This legislation would only apply to heirs’ property which has been received by one or more co-tenants, and only when there is no written agreement governing partition among the owners. 
Co-tenants requesting partition would be required to give notice to all other co-tenants, a court would be required to order an independent appraisal to determine the property’s fair market value as a single parcel, and the other co-tenants would need to be given 45 days to exercise their right of first refusal or elect to purchase the shares of the co-tenant seeking partition.
This uniform legislation was designed by the Uniform Law Commission, a non-partisan organization dedicated to providing clarity and stability to critical areas of state laws. Since 2010, 22 states and the District of Columbia have enacted the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act, and three other states are actively working on passage. 
It is time for Pennsylvania to join our neighbor states of New York and Maryland to preserve the right of a co-tenant to sell their interest in inherited real estate while protecting the rights of their other co-tenants to prevent forced sales. 
Please join us in supporting this legislation to help Pennsylvania families preserve their financial wealth for generations to come.

Introduced as HB2232