How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Richard Your Own Question

Richard
Richard, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 45906
Experience:  32 years of experience as lawyer in Texas. I'm also a Real Estate developer.
17027240
Type Your Real Estate Law Question Here...
Richard is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My husband and I lived in his mothers 2 family house in one

Customer Question

My husband and I lived in his mother's 2 family house in one of the apartments for 40 years. We have 3 grown children.

In the mid 80's, my husband's brother and wife came to live in my mother-in-law's apartment with her. They have 2 grown children.

My mother-in-law had a will which divided her possesions among her 3 children. The 2 brothers also have a sister who is married and lives elsewhere.

My husband was not aware of this, but my mother-in-law signed the house over to my husband's brother in about 1995. To be fair, she had asked my husband if he wanted the house. He inexplicably said that he did not want the house, but he did not know that title was transferred later on to his brother.

My mother-in-law died in 2002. My brother-in-law gave his sister a settlement of $80,000, saying that this was one-third of the approximate value of the house in 1995. We continued to live there - my husband and I in one apartment; his brother and wife in the other. We paid a modest amount in rent - $800 per month, which was agreeable to my brother-in-law. We thought the house was in the estate process and we were paying the taxes and some minor things from time to time, such as painting, a new washer and some appliances as needed.

My brother-in-law wants us to leave our apartment and offered us $80,000. He said he was under no obligation to offer us anything, that at the time of her death, the house did not come into play because it no longer belonged to her.

We were thinking of seeing a lawyer, but were curious if we have any grounds to do so or if we're wasting our time (and legal fees). We had a figure in mind, thinking that he would have the entire house to himself and could sell it at a good price or rent our apartment and have some profit. Thank you.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Richard replied 1 year ago.
Welcome! My goal is to do my very best to understand your situation and to provide a full and complete answer for you.

Good afternoon. Unfortunately, your brother in law is in a very strong legal position. He does not have to offer you the $80,000 as the house was given to him during your mother in law's life and thus belonged to him 100%. As the owner, he also has the right to terminate your tenancy and/or to sell the property. So, legally, it might be better to take the $80,000 and not press the issue with him...that will safe you the legal fees and prevent him from deciding to play hardball with the risk you would get nothing.




This is the part of my job I don't like...when the law is not in favor of my customer. I wish I could tell you the law was different than this, but, I can only provide you information based on the law so that you can act on the best available information to you. ………..I wish I had better news, but can only hope you recognize and understand my predicament and don't shoot the messenger. I'm sorry!



Thank you so much for allowing me to help you with your questions. I have done my best to provide information which will be helpful to you. If I have not fully addressed your questions or if you have any follow up questions, or if I have misinterpreted your questions in any way, please do not rate me yet, but simply ask a follow up question without rating so I can provide you with a fully satisfactory answer. If I have fully answered your question(s) to your satisfaction, I would appreciate you rating my service with 3, 4, or 5 faces/stars so I can receive credit for helping you today. I thank you in advance for taking the time to provide me a positive rating!



Richard, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 45906
Experience: 32 years of experience as lawyer in Texas. I'm also a Real Estate developer.
Richard and 12 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Richard replied 1 year ago.
Thank you so much for the positive rating! I appreciate having had the opportunity to serve you! If I can be of assistance to you in the future, just look me up and I will be happy to help!

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    4813
    16 years of legal experience including real estate law.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    4813
    16 years of legal experience including real estate law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/lawpro/2012-6-25_171315_PT206740s.64x64.jpg Law Pro's Avatar

    Law Pro

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    6227
    20 years extensive experience in real estate law, foreclosure, finance, and landlord tenant law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BA/barristerinky/2012-6-10_22423_office.64x64.jpg Barrister's Avatar

    Barrister

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    4966
    13 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 24+ years
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    4446
    I've more than 27 years legal experience. Additionally, in CA I held a Real Estate Broker's license.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/rayanswers/2012-6-7_23346_Untitled1.64x64.jpg Ray's Avatar

    Ray

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    4030
    Texas Attorney for 29 years dealing in real estate
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PH/philip.simmons/2012-6-7_161915_BIGPhilipSimmons.64x64.jpg P. Simmons's Avatar

    P. Simmons

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2377
    12+ yrs. of experience including real estate law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/mnphillips2/2009-03-13_203105_10984459-249293407.jpeg Phillips Esq.'s Avatar

    Phillips Esq.

    Attorney-at-Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    2355
    B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.