Asked in Criminal Law, Foreclosure and Elder Law for Pennsylvania

Q: My 71 yr old father is facing forclosure due to a scam.

My father got involved with a woman facing legal troubles and believes he is funding a big top secret lawsuit against a gov. agency. However, no legitimate lawyer is ever produced when asked and some tragic event always occurs to prolong the case. It's been 5 yrs. He gave away all of his inheritance (estimated over $1M disappeared). He took out a loan on his house and hasn't made any payments since 2018. He is now panhandling for money to find the case. He is completely unwilling/unable to listen to reason. The Aging Agency says he is competent and gave us a list of homeless shelters to help. He will not see a doctor and will not sign anything. I'd like to pay his debts so he doesn't lose the only thing left (his home). How can I protect myself and him from his bad decisions?

2 Lawyer Answers
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
W. J. Winterstein Jr.
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Foreclosure Defense Lawyer
  • Boyertown, PA
  • Licensed in Pennsylvania

A: If your father refuses to sign any documents, even for a loan from you, you can (if the amount is doable) approach the holder of the Note and Mortgage and offer a pay-off in exchange for an assignment of the existing Mortgage and endorsement of the Note to you. The bank should be happy to work with you, especially if the mortgage debt is in default. Use a lawyer to prepare the documents (a Mortgage Assignment and endorsement of a Note are simple tasks, and the fees should be cheap).

it might be worthwhile approaching your local District Attorney's office to report what you believe to be a scam. The DA may or may not take action, but if others also approach the DA about this or related scams, the DA's interest should be piqued.

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
Answered
  • Wyomissing, PA
  • Licensed in Pennsylvania

A: I agree with Mr. Winterstein. The local office of aging may have a contact at the AG's office. At the DA's office ask for the victim assitance coordinator. I would consult an elder law specialist (they are board certified) to see if there is some type of limited conservatorship you can have to block this.

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