Can you foreclose on a condo when the owner died and the personal representative (and heir) did not put the deed in her name?

Asked about 1 year ago - Washington, DC

An owner in our condominium association died, and the property was inherited by two relatives. One relative was named the executor and personal representative, but did not transfer the property into her name. They have been renting out the apartment, but have not paid condo fees. We are owed $12k and rising. Can we foreclose, with notification going to the presonal representative?

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Lawrence Roger Holzman

    Contributor Level 12

    Answered . You should contact counsel quickly. There are estates issues that have timeliness components to them. Under the Maryland Contract Lien Act, you can institute a lien by first giving notice of intent to file a lien (usually you first accelerate the year's assessments), then if the owner doesn't file a complaint in circuit court objecting within 30 days, you can file the lien in the land records. After that you can start a foreclosure proceeding through the Maryland Rules 14-01 et sec.

    Your condo attorney should be well-versed in this process and how to accomplish it including how and where to give the notice.

    Since you are a condo, you have to use and attorney to accomplish the foreclosure anyway -- so you might as well contact your condo's counsel and ask them to start up the process.

    If you wish to discuss this further, I am happy to chat with you. Just give me a ring. I have litigated all sides of these issues, and participated in recent hearings at the Maryland legislature relating to foreclosure of condo /hoa liens.

    Larry Ho.

  2. Steven M Buckman

    Contributor Level 2

    Answered . I presume this is a DC building? If so I would urge you contact counsel. I have handled several condo lien foreclosure. I would recommend a super lien foreclosure which will wipe out the mortgage on the property. Usually the lender pays the arreage to prevent loss of the property. DC has a defacto foreclosure moratorium on mortgages so the lender is helpless to institute its own foreclosure. The lien you are foreclosing upon is mandated by the Bylaws so suit is not required to perfect the lien. Read more on my blog at Buckmanlegal.com .

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