If a quit claim deed was signed giving the home over to my ex, am I still responsible for the mortgage payments?

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If a quit claim deed was signed giving the home over to my ex, am I still responsible for the mortgage payments?

My ex-husband and I filed for Chapter 13 in 2006. In 2008 we separated; divorce becoming finalized in June of that year. He was still living in the house so we agreed to sign the home over to him using a quitclaim deed. I do not believe that he ever filed the deed and he stopped making payments soon after the divorce was finalized. The home is now facing foreclosure. I need to find out what I need to do regarding the mortgage and if I am responsible. They are unable to locate him so I am receiving all correspondence. How do I handle the mortgage company and clear up my credit? Will I be held responsible for half? Also, what if my ex-husband never filed the quit claim deed paperwork?  And finally, the Chapter 13 and divorce took place in AL, I now live in GA. Can I retain an attorney here to handle things?

Asked on January 3, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Georgia

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

What happened here is so common in divorce cases.  You agreed to give your husband title to the property via your settlement but that has no effect on the mortgage what so ever.  The only way that it would would have been if he had refinanced the house in to his name.  And even if your agreement stated that that is what he had to do you have no recourse except to sue him for a breach of the agreement.  You are most likely jointly and severally liable for the mortgage meaning they can come after you for the entire amount.  Again, your recourse is to sue him for the money.  What you need to do is to deal with the foreclosure first and then your credit.  If the property is located in Alabama then that is where you need to deal with it.  Seek help from a real estate attorney as to your options.  Can you pay up the back amount owed then sell it and pay off the mortgage?  Can you do a short sale or a deed in lieu of foreclosure (remember to ask the bank to waive the deficiency if any)?  Seek help.  Good luck.


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