Since my mother has passed away and left her house to me as part of her living Will, if I let it go into foreclosure what is the legal impact on me?

UPDATED: Nov 17, 2012

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Since my mother has passed away and left her house to me as part of her living Will, if I let it go into foreclosure what is the legal impact on me?

The problem is that she still had a $40K mortgage. In addition, the house will require another $30K in repairs just to sell it. Am I liable for her debt?

Asked on November 17, 2012 under Estate Planning, Texas


Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You are not liable for your mother's debt.  You inherit her interest in the property, which sounds like negative equity.  If the property has some equity and you can sell it, then you receive the proceeds that exceed the mortgage.  However, this sounds like a losing proposition.

Not only are you not liable for the mortgage, you are not required to open an estate to manage this house.  If you want to let it go in foreclosure, you can do that.  The mortgage company can open an estate to foreclose on the property.  If you are named the personal representative in your mother's will, you would have preference to serve in that capacity, but you can waive your right to serve.  This would leave the entire process up to the mortgage company.  Your only role would be to waive your right to serve as personal representative of the estate and disclaim your right to any interest in the property.

I hope this eases your mind.  Good luck.

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