Spring Branch, TX asked in Real Estate Law for Texas

Q: If I wrote and signed a piece of paper giving my brother full rights to my home 5 years ago could I evict and reclaim it

I inherited it from my father who was his stepfather. I was not in a good mental state at all when I decided to just give it to him as living in the home was too hard and overwhelming for me. That piece of paper is the only thing I ever signed regarding the ownership of the home. My brother has been paying the property tax all of these years. He has also put some work into remodeling it. But I am in a better emotional and mental state and realize that he took advantage of my grief during that time. I have since lived from friends house to friends house, sometimes homeless and now paying an absurd amount of rent and would like to reclaim the property.

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

A: It depends on the piece of paper and what it says. It may also depend on whether you can prove you were mentally incapacitated. Being "emotional," or "sad," or "overwhelmed" may not be sufficient to prove you lacked the mental capacity to transfer ownership of the home to your brother.

An eviction suit is likely not the best route. You likely would need to file a suit to quiet title or a suit to set aside the "piece of paper" you signed due to mental incapacity.

Realize that this type of lawsuit is likely to become nasty, lengthy, and expensive. Depending upon the particular facts and circumstances of your case, you may not be able to recoup attorney fees from your brother and you may be required to pay him for property taxes and remodeling he has done in order to reclaim title. You may also be facing a time issue based on the statute of limitations. Build up a financial war chest of $50,000 as quickly as you can and consult with an experienced litigation attorney in or near the county where the property is located.

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