Athens, TN asked in Contracts, Real Estate Law, Insurance Bad Faith and White Collar Crime for Tennessee

Q: My late mother paid a mortgage co for title insurance but they never done one, is that illegal?

My mother paid a mortgage co for title insurance in 2007. The mortgage company did not do the title search until after my mother's death 8 years later, thus finding out the land wasn't signed off by my uncle back in 5/02, leaving him owning a security interest in the land. The title company is trying to get my uncle to sign a quitclaim giving them complete ownership due to the mortgage company foreclosing on my mother's part. Can he ask for some type of compensation for his security interest in the land, or maybe even recover just the land without the mobile home on it? Considering the mortgage co did not have any part of the land, but misrepresented what they needed my mother to sign in the first place? Also, the title company did not contact my uncle until a year after my mother's death about this problem. my mother paid them $567 to do the search on 4/07, why had it not shown up until 8/16?

1 Lawyer Answer
Anthony M. Avery
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  • Insurance Claims Lawyer
  • Knoxville, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: You have not provided all of the necessary data, but I can tell you this much. It appears that your uncle has a superior or first deed of trust on the property.. It may include fixtures also, and if the mobile home does not have wheels, it might be arguably affixed to the land and part of the security. Possibly your uncle's promissory note and deed of trust includes future advances and recovery for taxes, insurance, legal expenses, etc. All of this could add up to alot of debt which upon foreclosure of his deed of trust, should extinguish the so called mortgage (actually a deed of trust). It is probably beneficial for you or your family to have the uncle or his assignee foreclose his priority deed of trust. The mortgage company might pay up some money to protect their interest, or might walk away from their stupidity leaving the one that bids your uncle's note in the owner.

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