Is there something I can do without having to pay to have a succession done just for the house? 18 Answers as of March 07, 2014

My husband died 7 years ago without a will. The only thing in his name was our (paid for) home. It is in my name and his. The bank is telling me that I can't get a home equity loan because my only child (whom is 28 and lives with me) owns half of the house? Is there something I can do without having to pay to have a succession done just for the house? The loan I want is small in comparison to what my property is worth. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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Law Office of Jeffrey T. Reed | Jeffrey T. Reed
Check your deed, if you & your husband are listed as joint tenants the creates a right of survivorship in California and all you need to do is record an affidavit of death of joint tenant and a copy of the death certificate to transfer title to you alone. If you are listed as ?tenants in common? then yes, your son would have an interest, probably no more than a 25% interest under California?s intestate succession rules though. In that case you would need to go to the probate court to get the title straightened out. If the value is less than $150,000.00 you can use a summary procedure that is quicker and cheaper. Check with your local legal help center to see if you can do it yourself.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/7/2014
Durham Jones & Pinegar | Erven Nelson
If your son is cooperative, you could have him sign a deed to you which would give you full ownership of the house. If the house was in joint tenancy with you and your husband, you could file an affidavit terminating joint tenancy along with a death certificate to get the house in your name.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 3/7/2014
Goldsmith & Guymon
Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
You need to sit down and address your issues with a probate attorney in your area.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 3/5/2014
Law Ofices of Edwin K. Niles | Edwin K. Niles
All owners must sign the new promissory note. Therefore, it is necessary to get your husband's name off the title. If it's like 99% of deeds, yours probably says, as joint tenants?. If so,all you need to do is record an affidavit of death. Any lawyer who does probate work should be able to do this for a charge of one hour, around $300 or so. Once title is in your name alone, you should be able to move forward with a loan.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/5/2014
James Law Group
James Law Group | Christine James
Consider a private loan or put your son on the loan with you.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/5/2014
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    Obtain the services of a probate attorney and take care of this matter the right way, without mistakes; you will need an affidavit terminating the joint tenancy.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Frederick & Frederick PLC | James P Frederick
    I am not sure why you would need a "succession" on the house. It sounds like what you need is agreement from your child/step-child. A succession would not appear necessary, under your limited facts. After reviewing your deed a lawyer could help you determine how best to proceed.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
    You use the term "succession," so I'd encourage you to note that this is the Oregon area of this website. If you're not in Oregon, my answer won't apply. The answer to your question depends on when you and your husband bought the house. In general, spouses own real property in Oregon as "tenants by the entirety," which is a survivor-ship estate. At certain times in the last 30 years the law required that your deed actually state that you are husband and wife, in order to create tenancy by the entirety. If it didn't say "as tenants by the entirety" or "husband and wife," then you would be tenants in common, in which case your late husband's part of the house would be in his estate. If your husband had any children who are not also your children, then his children would own a part interest in the house. If not, then you would still own the whole house, but you'd have to do a probate to transfer his half to you.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    The Law Office of David L. Leon
    The Law Office of David L. Leon | David L. Leon
    Yes, you can do some summary proceedings, assuming that the child is willing to sign off. The costs are much less than doing a motion to determine heirs. The cost would be less than $1,000.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    You should see an attorney, one of my suggestions might be having the other half owner of the home agreed to subordinate his interest to the bank's mortgage.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
    If you owned the home as joint tenants with rights of survivor-ship you can record an affidavit terminating joint tenancy. If you owned it another way, you may have to probate it to get title in your name and your child's name. If he is on the home's title you will need his consent to borrow against the home.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    You might want to see a probate attorney. In most states, when one dies intestate (without a will), the decease's estate goes to the surviving spouse. If no spouse, then the children.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Edward L. Armstrong, P.C. | Edward L. Armstrong
    I am curious as to how your son's name got on the title to the house. There must have been a deed given to him and recorded in the Recorder of Deeds office for the County where the property is located. Check that out. If your son's name shows up on the title transcript, have a quitclaim deed prepared for him to sign relinquishing any interest he may have in the home.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Elder Law Office of Mark Schaefer PC | Mark Schaefer
    Your child actually owns only a quarter of the house (half of your late husband's half), but as long as you own less than 100%, the bank will not want to lend against it. If you child will relinquish his or her share, you could have him/her sign a quitclaim deed transferring his or her interest in the house to you. That might be enough.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd.
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd. | Randall C. Romei
    The wording on the Deed will determine if the house was owned by you and your husband in Joint Tenancy or Tenancy in Common. If the house was held in Joint Tenancy then as the survivor you would be sole owner, you need only record a Joint Tenancy affidavit and a certified copy of the death certificate. If the property was held by you and your husband as Tenants in Common, then your share of the ownership interest remains with you and your husband's share of the ownership interest would have passed to you and to your husband's children. If the deed does not describe the ownership interest held by you and your husband as Tenants in Common then It would seem likely that you would be a owner and you husband's child would own of the home. If the bank is telling you that you own half of the home that could mean that you were not an owner, with your name on the deed, at the time of your husband's death. The deed must be examined to determine the proper ownership interest. The transfer of your husband's ownership interest to you and his son will require opening a probate case.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Ben T. Liu Law Office
    Ben T. Liu Law Office | Ben T. Liu
    Have an attorney look at the deed. If the house is owned by you and your husband jointly with right of survivor-ship or as tenants by the entirety, you should be the sole owner of the house. Otherwise, you may have to probate.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Attorney At Law | James G. Maguire
    You can probably do the succession through affidavits. You should have an attorney to prepare these documents for you, but it is a fairly process, with no court costs involved.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 3/5/2014
    Fluhr & Moore, LLC | Steven S. Fluhr
    It depends on how your home is titled. If owned by you and your husband as tenancy by the entirety then the bank is wrong. You own the property and need only file an affidavit of survivor-ship with the recorder of deeds. If for some reason the title is in both names as tenants in common (which is uncommon for a husband and wife) then you would have to talk to a lawyer to see if an action can be taken to get the property in your name.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 3/5/2014
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