Rockledge, FL asked in Real Estate Law, Landlord - Tenant and Probate for Florida

Q: Ejectment after being deeded property from a Will.

I was the executor of my father's will. He owned a non-homestead house in another county. I filed a probate case and was deeded the home after disposition. A half sibling (step brother to my father) has been living in the home for 17 years and was on the mortgage (not the deed). I am now responsible for this mortgage and I want to sell the home. Since the deed is now solely in my name, can an ejectment be filed to remove them from the house? Would the person living there have any claims to the property?

If there are any lawyers willing to take this case, please respond with contact information. Thank you.

2 Lawyer Answers
James Clifton
James Clifton
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Fayetteville, GA
  • Licensed in Florida

A: Yes, an ejectment action would be appropriate to remove the occupant. However, they may have an equitable claim for the amounts paid on the mortgage, assuming they paid some portion of the mortgage that they signed for. Please feel free to reach out for a free consultation.

Barbara Billiot Stage agrees with this answer

A: The step-brother may have been paying the mortgage and might have a claim for those payments as well as any money he invested into maintenance and repairs if he was not paying rent. It seems a bit unusual to me that he was on the mortgage but not the deed. Usually someone signs a mortgage to acknowledge they are an owner on the deed or have some other right to possess the property (usually through marriage) and their interest could be foreclosed. A title search would need to be performed to make sure he has no interest and a review of the probate documents would need to occur to make sure he had an opportunity to assert a claim if he had one, otherwise attempting to sell the property could run into some obstacles. While an ejectment action could be filed, you should also have a real estate attorney represent you in any sale of the property. No one should buy or sell real estate without a lawyer.

Anthony M. Avery agrees with this answer

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