Mocksville, NC asked in Estate Planning, Foreclosure, Real Estate Law and Probate for North Carolina

Q: Do I have to use the surplus funds check from my deceased dad's house to pay any debts?

He passed away in 2021, the house went into foreclosure last year, and then they auctioned it off, and that was the last I heard about it until I was just contacted about there being surplus funds from the sale.

1 Lawyer Answer
Lynn Ellen Coleman
Lynn Ellen Coleman
  • Foreclosure Defense Lawyer
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: Excess funds from the sale belong to his estate. The reason why you were notified that the Clerk is holding excess funds is because there was likely a second mortgage, home equity line of credit, judgment lien, or tax lien (often more than one of these) that remains unpaid. You should contact a real estate attorney to look into what liens did not get paid from the sale, and how much is owed on those liens. Those lienholders get paid first - and there may not be any funds left over for your father's estate. If there are, yes his estate will need to publish notice to creditors, and the creditors have to be paid before the heirs are entitled to any money. If there will be any excess money a probate attorney will be helpful to handle the estate.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.