Descent and Distribution – Joint Ownership – Imposition of Constructive Trust on Murderer of Co-Tenant

A husband, owning land with his wife as tenants by the entireties, killed her and immediately thereafter committed suicide. In an action to determine ownership of the realty, both the probate and appellate courts declared that since a relevant disinheritance statute was inapplicable, full title vested in the husband and, upon his death, descended to his heirs. On appeal, held, reversed. Despite the common law nature of such tenancies, equity will impose on the husband a constructive trust in one-half the property for the benefit of the victim’s estate. National City Bank of Evansville v. Bledsoe, (Ind. 1957) 144 N.E. (2d) 710.