In the case of some assets jointly held with someone else, such as bank accounts or investments, those assets will pass to the joint owner automatically if they survive you. For jointly owned property, such as a house or land, to whom your share passes on your death depends on the way in which the property is held jointly. When you buy a house with someone else, there are two ways in which you can own the property jointly. The way in which most married couples own their home is as “joint tenants”. This means that they both own the whole of property (i.e. there are no distinct shares) and if one of the owners dies then the whole of the property will pass to the survivor of them, irrespective of what his or her will says and irrespective of the intestacy rules if they do not have a will. The other way in which a property or land can be held jointly is as “tenants in common”. This means that each joint owner holds a distinct share of the property. The proportions in which the property is held may be specified through a declaration of trust, but if no declaration is made it is generally (but by no means always) assumed that the joint owners have equal shares in the property. So, if there are two owners, they are considered to own half each. When a property is held as tenants in common, if one of the joint owners dies their share does not automatically pass to the surviving owner or owners. Instead, their share will pass in accordance with his or her will or, if there is no will, in accordance with the intestacy rules.