In Columbus, as with all of Ohio, a spouse has a dower interest in the other spouse’s property.
If a someone wants to sell the property wherein his or her spouse has a dower interest, then that seller has to get his or her spouse to sign and waive their right of dower. Otherwise, he or she can’t give title to the property to the buyer.
The other aspect of the dower interest is that if someone who has title to the property wants to refinance, and they go to a lender and get a mortgage, the mortgage company will want the spouse to sign off on his or her dower interest in order to provide the loan.
It is important to know that Ohio is one of the only states that still has dower rights. The reason Ohio hasn’t abolished dower interest is because there are committees in favor of it, viewing dower rights as protecting the rights of spouses in divorces and other events. However, there is current legislation out there to try and abolish a spouse’s dower interest. .
Q: If dower is abolished, how will it change things with respect to disposing of property in Columbus?
If your name is on the deed, you would no longer have to get your spouse to sign off on the sale of the property because his or her dower interest would be gone. You would just be looking at the holders of the title to the property.
The same would be true if you want to borrow money on your property. You would no longer need to go to your wife or husband to sign off on the mortgage.
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