Joint tenancy v tenancy in common
Co-owners can 'hold' a property in two different ways:
1. As joint tenants - the owners don't own distinct shares in the property. If one co-owner dies their 'share' in the property automatically passes to the surviving co-owner.
2. As tenants in common - the owners have distinct and separate share in the property. If one co-owner dies their 'share' in the property will be left to whomever they nominate in their Will or, in the absence of a Will, in accordance with the rules of intestacy.
A conveyancer who fails to provide proper advice to co-owners on joint tenancies and tenancies in common is a risk of a claim in negligence.