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I may have a civil lawsuit against me, how can I protect my…

I may have a civil...
I may have a civil lawsuit against me, how can I protect my home from leins and such?
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Answered in 11 minutes by:
10/18/2017
barristerinky
Category: CA Real Estate
Satisfied Customers: 42,138
Experience: Attorney practicing real estate law for over 17 years
Verified

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney and will try my best to help with your situation. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I type out an answer or reply.

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Has a lawsuit already been filed against you?

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If so, do you anticipate losing it?

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Do you have any equity in the property?

.

.

thanks

Barrister

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
No. I don't believe that there is a lawsuit yet, but there could be. I have no knowledge of it. From what I understand if a criminal case restitiution payment is ordered by a judge and it is not paid by the end of probation it turns into a civil judgement. I don't know if that is automatic, or if there has to be some sort of legal notifications to everyone, but that is the situation. I have full equity in the house, I own it.

Ok, are you saying that the house is entirely paid off?

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
It is my only asset besides my vehicle and personal belongings

Ok, then that presents a bit of a problem because if you own the house outright, CA only has a homestead exemption for $75,000 for a single person. You may exempt up to $100,000 if you live with a family member; $175,000 if you are 65 or older, or physically or mentally disabled; $175,000 if 55 or older, single, have a low income and creditors seek to force the sale of your home. If you are married but separated, you may claim the homestead exemption in community property occupied by your spouse.

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So you might want to consider deeding the property out of your name to a family member you trust. That might not protect it if the creditor discovers the transfer, as it could be considered "fraud on a creditor" and if challenged in court, the judge might rule it was a fraudulent transfer and reverse it and allow them to foreclose if it is worth more than the exemption amount..

.

But it is your best shot at protecting it..

.

.

thanks

Barrister

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
what about putting it into a trust?

That could work as well, but if it wasn't an irrevocable trust, it wouldn't provide any protection at all... And you still can run into the fraud on a creditor issue if the creditor is smart enough to research the property records..

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
with an irrevocable trust would I ever be able to change it back to my name or into someone else's name? Please tell me about any options of an irrevocable trust. Thank you

with an irrevocable trust would I ever be able to change it back to my name or into someone else's name?

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No, not unless the trust was drafted so as to terminate after a certain period of time.. which would be the wise way to do it..

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An irrevocable trust provides protection from creditors unless a judgment is imminent... as in 6 months or so away.. If it was longer than that away, then any challenge to the transfer could be fought with a good chance of success.

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Just one more question please.....you said....No, not unless the trust was drafted so as to terminate after a certain period of time.. which would be the wise way to do it..Question: what would be the shortest amount of time that I could set the irrevocable trust to terminate?Thank you for all of your help.

There is nothing that says how long a trust has to last.. So you could have it drafted to last however long you want it and to terminate upon a certain date..

barristerinky
Category: CA Real Estate
Satisfied Customers: 42,138
Experience: Attorney practicing real estate law for over 17 years
Verified
barristerinky and 87 other CA Real Estate Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
thank you
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