MA NOTICE OF RIGHT TO DECLARE HOMESTEAD PROTECTION (G.L.c. 188, 14)

MA NOTICE OF RIGHT TO DECLARE HOMESTEAD PROTECTION
(G.L.c. 188, §14)

PROPERTY ADDRESS _________________________________________________

The law provides for automatic homestead protection on your home where you and your family occupy or intend to occupy the home as a principal residence.  The law also gives you a right to “declare” homestead protection on your home where (a) you and your family occupy or intend to occupy the home as a principal residence or (b) you are either (i) age 62 or older or (ii) disabled (a person who meets the disability requirements for Supplemental Security Income) and these “declared” homesteads will provide enhanced benefits.  Below is a summary of the differences between automatic homestead protection and the enhanced benefits acquired by making a declaration of homestead.

 

Type of Homestead

Protection Afforded

Comments and Differences

Automatic

$125,000

►This protection arises automatically for the benefit of each owner and his or her family and is (a) shared between owners who are tenants in common or trust beneficiaries in proportion to their ownership interests and (b) as to joint tenants and tenants by the entirety, is “whole and unallocated” (available to both) as between the owners but to a total of $125,000 between them.
►In the case of the automatic homestead if spouses occupy separate homes as their principal residences the $125,000 homestead exemption will be split between them.

Declared (Standard)

$500,000

►This enhanced protection arises for the benefit of each owner and his or her family only by recording a declaration and is (a) shared between owners who are tenants in common or trust beneficiaries in proportion to their ownership interests and (b) as to joint tenants and tenants by the entirety, is “whole and unallocated” (available to both) as between the owners but to a total of $500,000 between them.

Declared (Standard) continued

 

►This homestead can be declared by any owner or owners regardless of age or disability.  If more than one owner declares a homestead the homestead protection for each cotenant or trust beneficiary who benefits by an estate of homestead will be determined by multiplying $500,000 by the percentage ownership interest of that cotenant or trust beneficiary.
►In the case of a standard homestead if spouses occupy separate homes as their principal residences and make separate declarations the $500,000 homestead exemption will be split between them.
►In the case of a standard homestead if the declarant thereafter marries the spouse will automatically have the benefit of the homestead.

Declared
(Elderly or Disabled Person)

$500,00

►This type of homestead is available only to persons who are either (a) age 62 or older or (b) disabled (a person who meets the disability requirements for Supplemental Security Income). This enhanced protection arises for the benefit of an owner individually but requires the recording of a declaration. 
►Not all owners need to fall into these categories. 
►Persons who are in these categories may declare separate homesteads and the $500,000 homestead exemption will apply to each (not be reduced, prorated or allocated).
►If the declarant of an elderly/disabled persons homestead conveys to or is survived by a spouse who does not otherwise have the benefit of a homestead the spouse will acquire homestead rights as though the homestead was of the standard variety until the spouse is eligible for and declares an elderly/disabled persons homestead.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF RECEIPT OF NOTICE

 

WE ACKNOWLEDGE THAT WE HAVE RECIEVED THIS NOTICE.     DATED: ___________

 

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