Legal Question in Real Estate Law in Pennsylvania

Keeping the house due to death

My Mom passed & my neice & her 3 kids live in her house, she owes a lot of money, I need help for them, I want them to live there, her one boy is special needs, they need finical help as well. Can the mortage co. just take the house & kick them out? Where do I turn? The 6 yr. old is begging not to lose the house.

Asked on 12/31/06, 10:27 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Douglas Humes Law Office of Douglas P. Humes

Re: Keeping the house due to death

Your motherís house should go not to where you think it should go but to where your mother may have directed in her will; or if she had no will, then to the beneficiaries entitled to share her estate under the intestacy laws. In order to do this, her will needs to be probated or an administrator appointed for her estate. That's the first problem.

The second problem is that the house apparently has a mortgage and no one is paying it. If you don't pay the mortgage, then yes, eventually you lose the house. You can slow down the process, but you will never get the bank to agree to let your niece and her family live there and not pay off the mortgage. The bank loaned money to allow your mother to buy the house. Your mother agreed to pay the bank back. If not, then the bank can sell the house to recover its loan and its costs. Any extra would go to your motherís estate.

And the third problem, your niece and her three children have no money and no place to live. That unfortunately is not a legal issue. You need to see what assistance your county provides to allow your niece to get back on her feet.

Problems 1 and 2 would benefit if you sat for an hour with a lawyer and gave them more details. Some lawyers provide a free initial consultation. Find one of them and lay out the problems and see if they can help you find some way to handle them.

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Answered on 1/02/07, 7:55 am

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