California Code of Civil Procedure 874.321.5 is the California partition statute that describes how the court will distribute the costs of partition among parties that oppose the partition under the California Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act. The statute states the following:
In an action for partition of heirs property, the court may apportion the costs of partition, including an appraisal fee, pursuant to Section 874.040, except that the court shall not apportion the costs of partition to any party that opposes the partition unless doing so is equitable and consistent with the purposes of this chapter.California Code of Civil Procedure 874.321.5
Common costs associated with a partition action include a property appraisal fee, partition attorney’s fees, partition referee fees, and real estate broker fees as specified by CCP § 874.010. Ordinarily, these costs may be distributed among all co-owners, whether they are in favor of or against the partition action as set forth in CCP § 874.040 relating to apportionment of costs.
Not only do co-owners of inherited property have more opportunities to remain in possession of their property under the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act, but this statute also allows them to deflect various costs of partition onto the partitioning party(ies). This may serve as a deterrent to co-owners who are unsure of whether they want to sell and may prevent sales that could otherwise be solved amicably.
Interestingly, the statute suggests that courts “shall not apportion the costs of partition to any party that opposes the partition unless doing so is equitable and consistent with the purposes of this chapter.” Seemingly, this means that ordinary co-owners with legitimate concerns will not be tagged with the costs of the partition, but uncooperative co-owners who intentionally frustrate the partition may indeed be assessed with the entire cost of the partition, including attorney’s fees.
Contact an Experienced Partition Attorney in California
If you want to end your co-ownership relationship, but your co-owner won’t agree, a partition action is your only option. Our experienced partition lawyers have years of experience ending co-ownership disputes and can help you unlock the equity in your property. For a free, 15 minute consultation with an experienced partition attorney at Talkov Law, call (844) 4-TALKOV (825568) or fill out a contact form online.