Can creditors for unsecured credit cards and personal loans put a lien on my home?

The home was paid off before it was gifted to me as an early inheritance. I have a personal loan with one creditor as well as 2 credit cards with small balances that I have been unable to pay since being laid off. I cannot pay anything or accept a settlement with them because I can barely pay my monthly expenses. Can they put a lien on the home without my knowledge? And would I be forced to sell the home to pay off the loans?

Asked on August 29, 2011 Florida


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation.  They are unsecured creditors and because they are unsecured they will first have to sue you to obtain a judgement before they can try and collect on that judgement.  Once they obtain a judgement then you have an option to have the debt wiped out in bankruptcy.  But how that will impact on your home you will need to ask a bankruptcy attorney.  And I would not consider bankruptcy if you think that your financial situation will get worse before it gets better because there may be other debts you need to wipe put and you can not file again.  So. once they obtain the judgement they can indeed file a lien on your home. You will have notice of this all - or you should.  Can they make you sell the home?  Probably not.  Flroida has very good laws to protect homes.  I would look in to that matter if you can.  Good luck.

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