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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 22669
Experience:  14 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 24+ years
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I divorced in Texas in 2003 and my husband kept the house in

Resolved Question:

I divorced in Texas in 2003 and my husband kept the house in the divorce. He never made any payments on the house until he died in 2012. Through crafty manipulation and a savvy attorney, he managed to stay in the house. In the meantime he was not paying HOA fees which were also assumed by the lender. Thousands of dollars in attorneys fees accumulated over years. My name is XXXXX XXXXX the mortgage even though I do not own the house which is still not foreclosed on 16 months since his death. Can I be held liable for any of the back payments because of a shortfall when the home is sold or any related bills from the HOA? I currently own a property in Texas. Can liens be placed on my property? Thank you.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.
Hello and welcome! My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
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When you say you don't own the house, do you mean that you aren't on the deed any longer?
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Were you ever on the deed?
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And you are still on the mortgage as ex never refinanced after the divorce?
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Did husband pass with any assets in his estate?
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Thanks
Barrister

Customer: replied 11 months ago.

My husband kept the home as a part of his portion of community assets in the divorce. I made many requests to the lender to remove my name from the deed. They would not remove my name. Yes, my name would still be on the deed. No he never did a refi on the loan. He just continued to live there and fight with the lender. For some reason, do not know what, he won in his efforts to postpone foreclosure for some 9 years. No, he passed with no assets, only all sorts of debt. Thank you

Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.
Ok, I hate to be the bearer of bad news so please don't "shoot the messenger"...But if you are on the mortgage to the property, then if they lender forecloses and sues for a deficiency judgment, they can sue both you and his estate for payment of any deficiency. Since his estate is insolvent, I am sorry to say it, but that leaves only you on the hook to pay the bill...
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If you aren't able to settle the debt with the lender if they foreclose and sue you, then you may have to consider filing bankruptcy to extinguish the debt if you are unable to pay it.
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I am sorry that I don’t have better news, but please understand that I do have an ethical and professional obligation to provide customers with legally correct answers, even when an answer is not favorable to the customer.

.
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

Thanks for your help. What I do not understand is possibly being held responsible for a shortfall when they could have foreclosed after only a few months of delinquent payments. A mortgage is an unsecured debt and the remedy is foreclosure.It sounds like I will be held responsible for the job they did not do per the mortgage agreement. Can a lien for anything related to this house be place on my current property?

Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.
A mortgage is an unsecured debt and the remedy is foreclosure.
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Actually a mortgage is a secured debt....but it is the lender's choice as to whether they foreclose or not. Ex may have gotten his attorney to file numerous diversionary claims that the lender would then have to respond to that can take years. So the lender may have actually been trying to foreclose all this time, they just couldn't get traction to do so...
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Can a lien for anything related to this house be place on my current property?
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The good thing is that TX is a very debtor friendly state and they have an unlimited homestead exemption. So the creditor can't lien your home if you own it. They also don't allow wage garnishments, so they can't come after your wages. About the only thing they can do is try to come after non-retirement savings or paid off assets like cars, boats, RVs, etc. to seize and try to sell.
.
.
Thanks
Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 22669
Experience: 14 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 24+ years
Barrister and 5 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you

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