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Thursday, July 03, 2014

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 1 today (and 1 NFP)

For publication opinions today (1):

In G. Kevin Powell v. Estate of Gary Powell, a 14-page opinion, Judge Friedlander writes:

G. Kevin Powell (Kevin) appeals a grant of summary judgment in favor of the Estate of Gary Powell (the Estate), which determined that Kevin and the Estate were tenants in common and thus one-half owners of real estate (the Real Estate) conveyed to them by their father, Lawrence Powell. Kevin presents the following restated issues for review: Does a deed conveying property to brothers as tenants by the entireties create a joint tenancy with rights of survivorship, or instead a tenancy in common?

We reverse and remand with instructions. * * *

We agree with the holdings and overarching rationale set out in Pennsylvania Bank & Trust Co. v. Thompson, Coleman, Sams, Mitchell, Morris, Wood, and McManus. In Indiana, as in those jurisdictions, “survivorship is the most important incident of a tenancy by the entireties[.]” Baker v. Cailor, 206 Ind. 440, 186 N.E. 769, 770 (1933). Therefore, when property is conveyed to individuals by the entirety or entireties, regardless of whether those individuals are husband and wife, a presumption arises that the grantor intended to convey the property with the right of survivorship. This, in turn, is sufficient to establish the intent to create an estate in joint tenancy with right of survivorship within the meaning of I.C. § 32-17-2-1(c)(2).

This is precisely what occurred in the present case. Lawrence conveyed the Real Property to his Sons as “tenants by the entireties.” Appellant’s Appendix at 22. Therefore, his intent to convey the right of survivorship is manifestly apparent from the tenor of the instrument. See I.C. § 32-17-2-1(c)(2). Accordingly, we reverse the grant of summary judgment in favor of the Estate and remand with instructions to grant the summary judgment motion submitted by Kevin.

NFP civil opinions today (0):

NFP criminal opinions today (1):

William H. Royal, II v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on July 3, 2014 10:42 AM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions