Kiritsis & Associates


What is a remainder?

Jul 14, 2021

Kiritsis Law Group 212 922 0005

By: John Kiritsis, Esq., CPA, MBA, MS, JD, LL.M

Generally, it refers to land interests, that are postponed, until the termination of some other interest.    A remainder is virtually always regarded, as a future interest in most U.S. jurisdictions. Usually, there are 2 types of remainders in real property law: vested and contingent. A contingent remainder is held by a party which has either not yet identified and/or is subjected to a condition precedent being satisfied. On the other hand, a vested remainder is held by one specific person (already identified) and is not subjected to any condition precedent being satisfied. A remainder man is usually referred to as the party who stands to inherit and/or is entitled to inherit a property, when the former owner’s estate is terminated. A popular source of confusion when talking about remainders, is to think of it as smaller property, which may make sense because a layperson’s definition of ‘remainders’ is the leftover after a division (THIS IS NOT NECESSARILY TRUE!!!). A reminder could be the entire property, because it refers to legal ownership of a certain property, and NOT the size of the property itself. 


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