Knoxville, TN asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee

Q: In Tennessee who pays an existing mortgage with a Living Will, the Life tenant or the remaindermen?

My deceased father's WILL listed monies from a home that was sold outside of the current estate to be used for payments but that account was co-owned by my father and I which I was told left me as the owner. I was told I did not have to use those funds to pay the mortgage but I did anyway until the funds were drained. Now the Life tenant says the remaindermen have to pay it because she isn't paying anything since the WILL didn't require her to.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Anthony M. Avery
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  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Knoxville, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: It sounds like you were joint owner of a bank account, which left you the sole owner at Father's death. So the Will did not include such money even if it had such a clause. The remaindermen takes the real property as they vests in possession, which here is subject to a Deed of Trust. If not paid, it will be foreclosed. Apparently no grantee signed the Note. The Will has no effect on any of this. If you want the home, someone will have to pay the Note. A Partition Sale will not repay your payments. You might ask other remaindermen to deed their interests to you now while there are Note payments due and the future interests have not vested in possession.

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