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 Lucy, Esq. Your Own Question
Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 29262
Experience:  JA Mentor
Type Your Real Estate Law Question Here...
Lucy, Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

1. I used the equity in my home approximately 7 years ago to

Customer Question

1. I used the equity in my home approximately 7 years ago to purchase my son, daughter-in-law and at that time, two children. (Now 4)
2. The verbal agreement was that the house remain in my name until it was paid off. Terms were for 17 years, with them making the monthly payment, paying taxes and insurance.
3. For the past year, there has been a major gambling problem and they have made no payment on the house for the last 4 months, let the insurance on the property lapse, and paid no real estate tax. Other debts have also not been made.
4. Unfortunately, I need to remove them from the property because I am semi-retired and can no longer afford to support them. I have also been excluded from all birthday and holiday activities.
5. There is approximately $20,000.00 left to pay on the loan. I know t
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.


I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that you're having trouble with your son and daughter-in-law.

It appears that your question got cut off. Can you take a look and fill in the part that's missing? I apologize for the inconvenience. It would also help to know which state the house is located in. And can you confirm whether your name is ***** ***** name on the title and/or the mortgage?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The house is located in Tulsa, OK and is in my name ONLY.The rest was not important.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The rest was just frustration and hurt feelings.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

I'm sorry. This sounds like an awful situation for you. But thank you for letting me know.

I'm typing an answer for you now and it should be ready in just a few minutes.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Great, thank you so much.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

A verbal agreement that you'd transfer the house into your son's name when it's paid off would not be legally enforceable, even if they had gone ahead and made all the payments. However, since they're not paying, they really don't have any legal claim to the house, because your obligation to transfer title isn't triggered until they finish making the payments. At this time, they're essentially your tenants because they're in the house with your consent under an agreement that they'd make the payments. And that actually means you can have them evicted. The law says that a landlord can ask a tenant to either move out or pay the amount owed in full by serving a 5 day written notice. If they don't or can't pay, you can go to the local courthouse and file forms to have them evicted on the sixth day. The courthouse should have forms you can use to open the case. This site has more specific information on the process that might help.

Now, an eviction means your grandchildren are also evicted, so if you prefer, you can get a judgment against them for the money you're owed, which includes the mortgage payment, property tax, and insurance. You're allowed to ask for up to $7,500 in Small Claims Court, but it sounds like they might owe you more than that. If it helps, you could divide the property-related cases into one lawsuit and save payment on the other debts into another. That's an option.

If you can establish that the children are in danger because their parents are not looking out for their health and safety due to their gambling addiction, then you can get the state involved to ensure that the children are cared for. But if that's not the case, I'm sorry to say, Oklahoma law allows married parents to decide on their own who can and cannot see their children. Grandparents have no legal ability to bring a lawsuit in this situation unless you can prove that they're unfit parents. That's tough - and it would be best to have a local attorney help you because the law isn't on your side. The best chance you have at seeing the grandchildren is to see if you can appeal to your son, get him to agree to do the right thing.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What type of attorney handles this type of case? How can a 5 day written notice be served? Certified mail, etc. I really don't want to handle this myself but I would be open to sending the 5 day written notice myself.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

A landlord/tenant attorney would handle evictions. Or if you found a litigation attorney, they could handle the eviction, any other debts you're owed, and possibly if you wanted to have your son and his wife declared unfit parents.

Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

If you have any questions or concerns about my responses, please reply WITHOUT RATING. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.

Related Real Estate Law Questions