Dallas, TX asked in Real Estate Law, Divorce and Family Law for Texas

Q: Me an wife divorced about 3 years ago she passed away recently,she was awarded house on Decree

Bank says I’m responsible now is the house 100% mine again ? She never legally got it switched into just her name …

1 Lawyer Answer
John Michael Frick
John Michael Frick
  • Frisco, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: If the house was awarded to your ex-wife in your divorce decree, the house will only pass to you if she left it to you in a will executed after your divorce case. Otherwise, it will pass through the intestate laws to her children or her siblings, etc.

Your divorce decree should indicate who is responsible for the mortgage against the home. Typically, the party to whom a residence is awarded is also ordered to be responsible for the mortgage as between the spouses. Typically, you would be awarded a deed of trust to secure assumption, which should be recorded in the deed records. If your spouse (or her estate) doesn't pay the mortgage, you can foreclose on your deed of trust to secure assumption and regain ownership of the house, subject to the mortgage.

You should discuss the particular facts of your situation with the attorney who represented you in your divorce proceeding to insure that all of the appropriate documents were prepared and filed. That attorney is in the best position to help you resolve the current issues with the least amount of cost and in the least amount of time because he/she already knows what transpired in your divorce and what documents were prepared and filed.

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