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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 44549
Experience:  17 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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This question is in concerns with the state of North

Customer Question

This question is in concerns with the state of North Carolina real estate. Please let me know if the "Pure race statue" is acceptable in this case. Recently we found out that my deceased grandparents home doesn't have a deed, instead a deed of trust was established. On the deed of trust my mother was listed as well as her 3 siblings, two sister-in-laws and her ex-husband. The deed in trust was established over 10 years ago when my grandmother was still living, I would assume the this deed of trust was associated with a loan to paid the home off in full? No liens are on the home as far as well know. During this time the home was on and off the market never to be sold. Time has passed and all three of her siblings has passed and my mother set out to sell the house. The local tax office informed my mother that the home had no deed and her parents (my grandparents) did not have a will. The tax office considered this property hier land. My mother provided the "deed of trust" to dispute this and they replied that the "deed of trust" was not a deed and no longer valid(perhaps due to the loan being satisfied). My mother is the only surviving sibling and feels she is entitled to her parents home in full over her sister-in-laws etc. My mother wanted to know if she could file a deed in her name only and sell the house clear of title due to the "Pure race statue". My mother has an interest in the property and due to the " deed of trust" has paid the value of the home. From what I've read if she could create a deed with her name before anyone else since currently no deed in place and be able to take claim of property due to the "Pure race statue" with no contest. Would this be correct?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.

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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From what I've read if she could create a deed with her name before anyone else since currently no deed in place and be able to take claim of property due to the "Pure race statue" with no contest. Would this be correct?

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That isn't going to work because the way deeds work, the current owner has to sign the deed over to the new owner. The current owner is grandparent's estate if no one ever filed a probate case to settle their estate and transfer the property out of their name to your mother and her siblings..

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So there is no one who can legally sign the deed on behalf of the estate over to mother..

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A deed of trust is just a document similar to a mortgage... it isn't a deed and doesn't convey any ownership..

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So if no one ever settled grandparent's estates, then all the children would inherit the house equally (or their heirs) if a probate case is filed. If all the siblings are deceased, then their heirs would inherit their 25% of the house and mother would get her 25%.

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The only way mother can end up with the house solely is if she pays taxes on it and maintains sole and exclusive possession of if for 20 years and then files a quiet title lawsuit against everyone under the adverse possession laws and claims legal ownership of it. See NC Statutes § 1-40

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Grandparents are deceased and siblings are deceased. Could she sign it on the behalf of the estate? technically she is the only living sibling. Would it be to late for this? And if she could not sign it over to herself could she sign it over to someone else
Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.

Could she sign it on the behalf of the estate? Would it be to late for this? And if she could not sign it over to herself could she sign it over to someone else

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No, she has no legal authority to do so.. Only a judge can appoint someone as the legal representative of an estate and give them the power to sign a deed over. Otherwise it is a fraudulent deed and would actually be a crime..

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If she filed a probate case to settle the grandparent's estate, then she would have the authority to sign a deed from the estate, but she has to still follow the intestate laws and transfer the property to the heirs at law....which would be all the children (or their heirs) equally...

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So she couldn't file a probate case and then just sign a deed as rep of the estate over to herself solely since legally her siblings/estates are entitled to their 25%. The thing is that if this had been done properly back when grandparents died, it would have turned out the exact same way...just the siblings would have been living..

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I am very 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 based on my knowledge and experience, even when I know the answer doesn’t make the customer happy...

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Your being very helpful and I appreciate this. I wanted to know, if she filed a probate case to settle my grandparent's estate, then she would have the authority to sign a deed from the estate. Could she then sell the property and just mail the 25% to each of the heirs? Only because we don't want to have to keep the home for another year and pay taxes again. Getting the hiers to sign a deed an agree on how much the home should be placed on the market would delay forever. I believe she would have more of a chance to get the home sold in a reasonable amount of time, then send of the monies to everyone involved .Would she need to obtain an attorney in order to do this and make sure everyone gets there share? Or is it possible without an attorney. Also what steps would the probate process consist of?
Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.

I wanted to know, if she filed a probate case to settle my grandparent's estate, then she would have the authority to sign a deed from the estate.

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Correct.

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Could she then sell the property and just mail the 25% to each of the heirs?

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Yes, that would be the way I would do it. As rep for the estate, she has the authority to sell the property without having to ask permission from all the heirs..

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Would she need to obtain an attorney in order to do this and make sure everyone gets there share? Or is it possible without an attorney. Also what steps would the probate process consist of?

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It isn't mandatory, but it would probably go more smoothly and faster. She files a petition to be appointed Administrator of the estate, mails notice to all the heirs about it, then there is a hearing where she is appointed as Admin. Then she has the authority to gather all assets, file an Inventory with the court, liquidate them, pay any bills, taxes, or debts, pay herself as Admin, then distribute the money to the heirs, file an Accounting, and close the estate. It will take around a year from start to finish as there are mandatory deadlines that must pass before the estate can close.

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It was my pleasure to work with you and help with your question. If you ever need me in the future, you can post a new question with "For Barrister" in the title and the JustAnswer employees will get it to me.

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If you feel I have answered all your questions, I would very much appreciate a 5 star rating by clicking on the rating scale on your screen as that is the only way I receive credit for my work.

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Thanks much

Barrister

Expert:  Barrister replied 11 months ago.

Hello again,

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I just wanted to touch base with you and check in.

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Did you have any further questions I can help with?

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Thanks much

Barrister