What can I do if my son is trying to defraud me of 50% of my house?

I bought my house for cash 9 years ago. My son was added to use his credit to apply for an equity loan. Soon after he was added, he stated to me banks are no longer doing equity loans. Since then he has refused to remove his name. I had my house sold but my son refused% to sign any paperwork for the sale unless 100% of the sale goes into his own bank. He gave me false intentions to gain 50% of my home. What can I do to get him removed from the title?

Asked on September 24, 2017 under Real Estate Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You put him on the title: he is therefore an owner of the home. You cannot remove from the title unless he voluntarily agrees to be removed; this is why you *never* put anyone on the title unless you are actually jointly buying the house with them and are prepared to have them as co-owner. 
He is not entitled to any more than his share: i.e. 50% of the equity, since he is one of two owners. If he attempts to "hold you up" for more than that, you can bring a legal action in "chancery" court (a part or division of country court) for a court determination ("declaratory judgment") that he only gets half (or even less; if you have paid taxes, mortgages, etc., the court can give you a credit for that) and also ordering him to do any paperwork required for a sale. This type of action can be procedurally complex; you are advised to retain an attorney to help you.

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