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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 33404
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
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My wife of 45 yrs died 19-19-2015. Am I responsible that are

Customer Question

My wife of 45 yrs died 19-19-2015. Am I responsible for debts that are in her name, signature loan for one. Also our house and car are in both our names, she had no will. I'm lost
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts.

Some debts you could be responsible for. If, for instance, you knew of and provided income information for a loan and the loan proceeds were used for a purchase of something you both used then the bank could argue it was really a joint loan. Also, if the debt is for an "essential" such as emergency room treatment then generally a court will hold a spouse jointly liable.

If, instead, the loan was made to her only, without your knowledge, and you neither consented to the loan nor used any of the proceeds then it is likely the judge would not hold you responsible.

What you need to do at this point is visit with a local lawyer to determine what kind of probate is needed of the estate. You have to do some kind of probate to clear title to the house and car but there are a variety of types of probate, some less complicated (and less expensive) than others. The only way to know which ones apply to your unique facts is to sit down and go over them with a local attorney.

Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 1 year ago.

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