Parkville, MD asked in Family Law and Real Estate Law for Maryland

Q: My father recently passed but he has a house in his name with someone as well that was falsely added

He purchased the property in 2003 but years later a women was added what should I do

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: Hire a lawyer to look into the title records, and provide a whole lot more details about who this woman was, her relationship to your father, whether she ever was romantically involved with him, or resided in the house, etc. If your father had a will, that should be reviewed. If there was an estate opened, or one open now, that needs to be reviewed. Once your father passed, only the Personal Repesentative of the estate can pursue actions to set aside a fraudulent deed or transfer in his name. If the PR refuses to act in the face of clear evidence, then any "interested person" (you, for instance, are an interested person because you are a legal heir) can petition the probate court to direct the PR to act, or to remove the PR and appoint a different PR. If all this happened years ago, and the estate was closed more than 18 months ago, there are going to be potential problems with the timeliness of your raising this issue now. If the woman whose name was added to the title was also the PR of the closed estate, then that may not be an issue as it would be deemed an extention of her fraudulent conduct. However, unless you can prove a forgery with a handwriting expert who will testify that it is not your father's signature on the deed that transfered his interest to her, then you will need to prove with competent evidence that he lacked the mental capacity to sign the deed at the time it was signed, or he was subjected to undue influence by someone and had no free will in the matter. Those are very difficult things to prove after so many years.

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