Can my uncle chase us from family property in Jamaica?Published Oct 1, 2012
QUESTION: Dear Legal Wiz,
Hi, I grew up on a property in Jamaica with my dad. The land was a family land where everyone just lived until they were old and died. There is a woman who married to one of the family members, and although not the owner she was paying the tax for my great great grand uncle as he could not read. So where my dad was alive he used to pay taxes by giving the lady money to pay. A few years ago she gave my dad the paper and tell him to pay since my great great grand uncle died but his name is still on the paper. I pay the taxes now that my dad died leaving me and my mom there.I have a uncle now coming there and saying its his land and we must get off. He is my father's younger brother. He wants the place to give his daughter .
How can that be when it is an old family land? What can I do as my dad lived there more 63years and my mom nearly 50years. No other kids of my great grand father the land was not really living there. It was just passed down in generation to live, eat ,drink and die kind of thing . So now I would like to remove the deceased name and put mine. I am alive and paying the taxes for there. Please help me . I await you reply . Thank You.
Jamaican Fancy Face
RESPONSE: Dear Jamaican Fancy Face,
Thank You For Writing In.
The solution is not as difficult as you think. Firstly, based on your outline, your uncle has no grounds to remove you from the property. However, if no will was left, he ma be entitled to a portion of the land. The best way forward is to check to ensure there is a title. Steps that will become necessary include:
- applying for title for the property where there is none
- applying for Letters Of Administration, so that the person with granted Letters of Administration can be legally empowered to deal with the land. Actions will include dividing the land as necessary.
- applying to have name of deceased removed and replaced at the land tax department.
Keep reading and communicating.
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