life estate

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Life Estate

An estate whose duration is limited to the life of the party holding it, or some other person.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

life estate

n. the right to use or occupy real property for one's life. Often this is given to a person (such as a family member) by deed or as a gift under a will with the idea that a younger person would then take the property upon the death of the one who receives the life estate. Title may also return to the person giving or deeding the property or to his/her surviving children or descendants upon the death of the life tenant--this is called "reversion." Example of creation of a life estate: "I grant to mother, Molly McCree, the right to live in and/or receive rents from said real property, until her death," or "I give my daughter, Sadie Hawkins, said real property, subject to a life estate to my mother, Molly McCree." This means a woman's mother, Molly, gets to live in the house until she dies, then the woman's daughter, Sadie, will own the property.

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

life estate

an estate of freehold that exists for the duration of the life of the grantee. If the grantee should assign his interest, that taken by the assignee is referred to as an estate pur autre vie (i.e. ‘an estate for the life of someone else’, namely the original grantee). Since 1925 a life estate can exist only as an equitable interest behind a trust.


Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
In this case, if D predeceases C, he must include the entire trust corpus, reduced by the present value of C's life estate.
Legal life estate. An interest consisting of a legal life estate plus a general power of appointment over the remainder will qualify if it meets the requirements (a) to (e) for a "power of appointment trust" above.
Finally, if we look at the problem as a standard waste case, perhaps arising in the context of a life estate or a conventional lease, we might be tempted to say, as Professors Stoebuck and Whitman point out, that this decision simply deviates from the general rule that "the appropriate measure of damages [for the commission of waste] is generally the diminution in market value of the property or the cost of restoring the property to its former condition, whichever is less." (165) But what can we say about it now, informed as we are about the shifting debates that have taken place over proper waste standards during the last eighty years?
(41) A deed reserving a life estate, as long as the applicant maintains an "intent to return," with a remainder to third parties, does not disqualify an applicant from Medicaid, (42) nor does a transfer between spouses.
Options generally used to reduce income taxes offers the life estate agreement.
Thus, a deed that purports to transfer a fee simple will instead transfer a life estate if that is all the grantor has.
The other negative aspect is that, since the beneficiary usually has some continuing right in the trust (e.g., a life estate), the property subject to the lapsed power would be included in his estate for estate tax purposes as a gift transfer in which an interest has been retained.
* Retained a life estate in the property previously transferred;
The valuation of a life estate requires appraisal of the fee simple estate and the determination of the expected life of the life estate holder using actuarial tables.
Specifically, [section][section]732.2035 and 732.2055 now include in the elective estate 50 percent of the net value of the protected homestead if the spouse receives a life estate (10) or elects to take a one-half tenants in common interest, or 100 percent of the net value if the spouse receives a fee simple interest.
* The sale of the Vested Remainder Interestin a Life Estate for the property located at 313 East 18th Street in Gramercy Park for $900,000 cash.