Riverview, FL asked in Family Law for Florida

Q: Unfortunately my spouse passed of Covid in January of 2021. I am not on the home loan.

Mortgage company will not assist me. At this point I am afraid that I am going to lose our home. I don't have the means to pay for an attorney. I want to know my rights as a surviving spouse in Florida? Thanks in advance.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Rand Scott Lieber
Rand Scott Lieber
Answered
  • Hollywood, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: As a surviving spouse you have a legal ownership interest in the real property (house). However, you are also financially responsible for the house. If your spouse was the only person on the loan (mortgage) then you will need to refinance in your own name moving forward. Because the lender was only in a legal contract with the owner who passed away they have no legal relationship with you. Speak with a local real estate attorney for more specific advice.

Bruce Alexander Minnick agrees with this answer

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick
Answered
  • Tallahassee, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: Any surviving spouse has significant legal rights to the real and personal property owned by the deceased spouse.

However, the decedent's personal debts do not just disappear into thin air, especially when secured by something valuable, like mortgaged real property or a Title lien against cars and boats, or by some other form of security.

Unless you or someone else refinances the secured debt owed by your husband the mortgage company will foreclose on the mortgage, which means you will have to relocate. Now is a good time to ask the family to help save the home.

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