Legal Question in Credit and Debt Law in Tennessee

Problems in Tenneesee

My husbands' uncle has put his mother (my husbands grandma) into a lot of debt. He has put her in about 70K worth of debt. Her house was paid for before all this started, but she had to take a 20K loan out on it to pay off some of uncles bills, which he propmtly ran right back up. She signed for a moblie home for him, and he missed payments, so she has had to pick up the slack on that as well. He has maxed out about 4 credit cards as well. Grandma is 73, and not in good health. Uncle is 53 and not in good health. My question is this, who is responsible for all this debt when grandma dies? I know the moblie home will be repo'd, and that is 32K of the debt, but what about the house loan and credit cards? Uncle and my husbands father are to recieve the house when she dies. Uncle may die before she does, and we do not Father to have to pay for all of uncles debts. Grandma owns another peice of land as well. Thanks for any input.

Asked on 8/05/03, 8:12 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

James R. Becker, Jr. Becker Law Firm
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Re: Problems in Tenneesee

This is a situation that you may need to sit down with an attorney to sort through. Based on what you are saying, a lot of the outcome will be determined by the nature of the debt (secured v. unsecured), the value of the collateral, the means of transferring the property after death and the timing of the collections actions and anyone's passing.

Without answers to these questions (or at least a more detailed overview of the situation) it is impossible to meaningfully answer your question. The outcomes could be as divergent as the difference between the creditors taking the house and property to pay the debt and the creditors walking away with nothing. Additionally, this sounds like a situation in which some careful planning (and cooperation) can help to maximize the value of your grandmother's estate upon her passing. For all of these reasons, I would strongly urge you to consult with an attorney who handles probate and estate planning matters.

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8/06/03, 11:13 am

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