does living children have to get into debt to pay off mothers mortage

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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does living children have to get into debt to pay off mothers mortage

my mom who is now deceased has her land divided between the 3 children, unfortunately she has an unexpected loan out on her farm, I received a portion of this which is located the woods, I have no interest in this property but have been told I need to come up about 80.000 to pay off my inheritance that I would receive to the debt/ loan collector.I have a house and car loan and have a single income, would not want or be able to pay for an additional loan.

Asked on May 1, 2018 under Estate Planning, Wisconsin


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If you accept the home (or a share or, or interest in, the home), then if you (and the other heirs) want to keep it, you'd have to pay off the balance of the loan: the loan came due when your mother passed away. But if you reject (called "disaffirm") your inheritance to the home, you of course would not have to pay anything--and you have an absolute to disaffirm this inheritance, since no one can be forced to take or inherit something against their will.
Or even if you take the home, you could then refuse to pay and (unless the other children come up their all the money, including your share) let the home be foreclosed.
That's the important thing: the home is at stake--if the loan is not paid, the lender may foreclose on the home. But the heirs are NOT personally liable for the loan and can refuse to pay without any impact on their credit andwithout being sued: it is not your loan, but only the person(s) who took out the loan are liable for it. So if you are willing to give up the home or let it be foreclosed upon, you don't have to pay.

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